A Guided Tour

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

Who, being in very nature 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 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,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

- Philippians 2:5-11

Here’s the entire hymn that Paul quotes to inspire his friends to serve with all the strength that they have in Jesus. He points them to Jesus and paints this powerful picture.

We want to encourage you to take a guided tour of this text on your own today. We know that many of you will discuss this passage in your small groups. And lots of you will listen to a sermon (or two!) on this passage this Sunday (live or online). But there’s something special about pausing for a beat to study on your own.

Here are some things to notice about the passage:

  • Notice how Jesus is described in the hymn
  • Notice the ways in which Jesus is active and the ways in which events happen around him
  • Notice the moments where Jesus steps down and up the ladder of social status
  • Notice the relationships in this passage (Jesus to God, Jesus to humanity, us to each other)

Read through the passage slowly two or three times and ask yourself:

  • What is God highlighting for me in the passage today?
  • What about Jesus’ mindset do I find inspiring? Challenging?
  • How might Jesus’ example help me past the things that are keeping me from serving the people who God’s placed in my life?

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