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He Made Himself Nothing -P2R Week 7-

 19.2.11

 

 

Week 7 :: Philippians 2:5-11

 

"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,
who, though he was in the form of God,
did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the form of a servant,
being born in the likeness of men.
 And being found in human form,
he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death,
even death on a cross.
Therefore God has highly exalted him
and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,
so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father."
- Philippians 2:5-11


How can you repeat day after day these words without having a lump on your throat and not falling to you knees in prayer... "{He} made himself nothing..."

This is the mystery we just can't grasp with our limited mind, yet it is a Truth we must believe if we are to be saved, and a model we are commanded to follow: "Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus..."

John MacArthur says,

"In light of the profound reality of Jesus’ full and uncompromised deity, His incarnation was the most profound possible humiliation. For Him to change in any way or to any degree, even temporarily by the divine decree of His Father, required descent. By definition, to forsake perfection requires taking on some form of imperfection. Yet without forsaking or in any way diminishing His perfect deity or His absolute holiness, in a way that is far beyond human comprehension, the Creator took on the form of the created. The Infinite became finite, the Sinless took sin upon Himself. The very heart of the gospel of redemption is that the Father “made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21). Although that infinitely marvelous and cardinal gospel truth is impossible to understand, it is necessary to believe."

He descended to save sinners like me, He came to rescue me when I was running away from Him and did not look for Him. This is where Grace meets us, in our sin not in our self-righteousness!

I keep muttering these words, I meditate on them while cooking and walking. I am commanded to have this same mind, I am commanded to humble myself, to make myself nothing, to be obedient to the point of death.

This doesn't come easy. I love my flesh, my skin.... isn't this the way I was taught by the secular media and the modern evangelical churches in which I grew up? 

We don't work toward having a good self- esteem, that is already there. Naturally we love ourselves more than God. We are never inclined to make ourselves nothing, to descend, to bow, to make ourselves servants.


Think of the moments your husband is sick, or when your children ask you to read them one more story, or when your neighbor needs help... does saying no to yourself comes easily? Not for me. 


The gospel calls us to live dying in our every day walk. It is not something mystic, it is there in your kitchen, in the marriage bed, in the moments that are woven together that we must make ourselves nothing. Yes, this seems like foolishness to the unsaved, but it is the message of the Cross. I must lay down my life, my minutes to God by serving those around me.


MacArthur says,


"It is the attitude of selfless giving oneself and one's possessions, power, and privileges that should characterize all who belong to Christ. They should be willing to loosen their grip on the blessings they have, which they have solely because of Him. Christians are set apart from the world as children of God and joint heirs with Jesus Christ. Yet they must not clutch those privileges and blessings. Instead, like the Lord, they must hold them loosely and be willing to sacrifice them all for the benefit of others"


and then he says,

"Christians obviously can't empty themselves to the degree that the Lord emptied Himself, because He started so high and Christians start so low. Believers have infinitely less to empty themselves of. Even what they have is given to them by grace. Believers are obligated to follow the Lord's example by emptying themselves of everything that would hinder their obedience and service to Him."


Isn't the home the perfect place to practice this? Isn't among our family that we find the best opportunities to practice emptying ourselves so that His name might be exalted?

I am learning; I do not want to let these opportunities pass by ...







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If I am happy it is because of God! God, in His sovereign grace, has called me out of darkness into His Admirable light. He has opened my eyes and has shown me the way to Eternal Life. He has set my feet on a journey, and now I am walking Daily on My Way to Heaven. I did not find Jesus, He found me. I did not seek Him, yet He called me. I did not love Him, yet He loved me. I deserved death and He gave me Life. This is the place where I keep a journal of my life under His sun and by His grace!
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Borrowed Words

"It becomes us to spend this life only as a journey toward heaven... to which we should subordinate all other concerns of life. Why should we labor for or set our hearts on anything else, but that which is our proper end and true happiness?"

Jonathan Edwards

"I am still pondering God's greatness in His creation. I have so many questions that I would like to ask the Lord about the universe, creation, the fall of man... But when I'm in heaven, I wonder if I will even remember them. At that time, being in the presence of God will be enough. I'm thankful that I can look forward to that day."

-Persis

“Heaven is not here, it’s There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next. God is forever luring us up and away from this one, wooing us to Himself and His still invisible Kingdom, where we will certainly find what we so keenly long for.”

- Elisabeth Elliot, Keep a Quiet Heart



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