Metropolitan United Methodist Church, Indian Head, MD
Philippians 2:5-10
April 10, 2022

Philippians 2:5-10

April 10, 2022

Metropolitan UMC, Indian Head, MD

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 Philippians 2:5-10

New International Version

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

Who, being in very nature[a] God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death—
        even death on a cross!

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

The word translated “mind” means perspective, frame of mind, outlook. Paul is continuing a theme he introduced in his opening prayer. He wants his friends to think things through under the authoritative guidance of Jesus Christ. This perspective will bring the kind of unity he is seeking in these Christians. It will also enable them to put each other ahead in line (this is the meaning of the phrase in v. 3). At this point Paul illustrates his encouragement theme over against its opposite, the selfish ambition, conceit theme.

The integrity of faith demands that we give up the illusion of perfection and face the truth about the world, ourselves, and the church. And this is what Paul does. There is one problem in the church at Philippi that now surfaces in Paul’s letter. There are tensions in the congregation that cause certain members to oppose each other instead of teaming together in the unity of soul and spirit. Later Paul will name three people in the fellowship who are involved in the arguments that now endanger the unity of the church.[1]


Notes area


[1] Earl F. Palmer, “Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost, Year A,” in The Lectionary Commentary: Theological Exegesis for Sunday’s Texts, Volume Two, ed. Roger E. Van Harn (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2001), 350–351.

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