Philippians 2:1-11 is all about humility. It is a beautiful reminder of the love and peace we receive from God when we enter into relationship with Jesus, the servant king. It then encourages us to be humble, like Jesus, and allow God’s love for us to overflow as love for other people. It says that when we value other people above ourselves we will experience joy.
The passage explains that we see perfect humility in the life of Jesus. In Jesus, the almighty creator God came to live on earth amongst his creation. He emptied himself to serve others and, in all his power and greatness, gave up everything for his people. To save us from sin, Jesus was obedient to God and died for us on the cross. This was the ultimate act of humility.
Jesus was humble because he wholeheartedly trusted God. Now, for those of us who believe in him, we are part of God’s family and have eternal life. Through Jesus, the servant king, we have a holy inheritance and a right relationship with our creator.
Philippians 2:5 teaches us that we should have the same humble mindset as Jesus. That we should trust God and value others above ourselves. Since Jesus was humble, by God’s amazing grace we have been saved. Since we have been saved through no ability of our own, our response should be to humble ourselves and follow God.
What’s more, when we follow God, we experience the most wonderful joy. As Christians, we are alive with Jesus who has been exalted to the highest place. We know the tenderness and comfort of God’s love. This makes us want to sing God’s praises and share his amazing love with others. In Philippians, it says a good way to do so is to serve others.
This is the complete opposite of what the world teaches. The world teaches us that to be happy or successful you should love yourself and do everything you can to accumulate your own glory. However, this does not result in joy or peace. The way of the world always results in disappointment. The world needs a saviour.
Once we believe that Jesus is our saviour, that he loves us, and has done everything for us, we are free from the downwards spiral of worldly passion, selfish ambition, and vain conceit. We no longer have to live for ourselves. We have the greatest joy because we know what God has done for us, and we can share his love with other people!
In this difficult and unusual time, Philippians 2:1-11 is a helpful reminder that humility is joyful. As we practice Christ-like humility, live for God, and share his amazing love with other people, may we be filled with joy!