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About-Him.Com Devotional 06-26-2014

The Mind of Christ

The apostle Paul told the Philippian church that they were highly honored to be allowed to have been Ordained for Suffering.  While they were suffering, they were not to become selfish and ignore the sufferings of the other saints who were also suffering. They were encouraged to maintain Unity in the Body in spite of their sufferings. 

The burden is much easier to bear when everyone is sharing the weight. I remember an example that my father used to share. He had pastured in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia back in the twenties. An elderly  church member who made his living by cutting wood, would fill his donkey cart and haul the wood up and down the mountain. When he came to an uphill grade, he got out of the cart and helped the donkey pull the cart up the mountain. When he came to the downgrade, the donkey gave hill a free ride down the hill.  That still works today! 

These are high sounding principals which we will not be able to uphold unless our carnal mind has been replaced by the mind of Christ. 

Philippians 2:5  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 

Notice the first word of this verse is, "Let" and let is an act of our will. 

When I feel prompted to pray and read God’s Word and I put it off until the urging has passed, then I’m guilty of not letting the mind of Christ possess my being. I need to remember that this prompting is not of myself but comes from the One who works in me, both to will and to do His good pleasure (Php. 2:13). 

John 6:38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. 

Philippians 2:6  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

Oh, to be able to fully comprehend the mystery of the incarnation of God in Christ Jesus. We will someday, but in the meantime, I think we all agree that Jesus Christ is the Almighty God manifested in the flesh (1 Ti. 3:16).   

Philippians 2:7  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 

When Jesus arrived in Bethlehem, He was and still is the eternal Word made flesh (Jn. 1:1,14). The  Christmas carol Oh Come Let Us Adore Him expresses the thought quite well as, “Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing.” He didn’t beat a drum and say, Here I Am, I’m God and you had best fall down and pay me proper homage.” No, He made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Himself the form of a servant, such as when He washed His disciples feet (Jn. 13:14). He who shared the form (nature) of God (Jn. 17:5) was pleased to walk among us, bearing our form (He. 2:17). 

How easy it is to feel that we’ve paid our dues and to expect others to recognize that fact. Well, if we receive the adoration and respect of men, that’s the only reward that we’ll be receiving and the praise of men doesn’t last very long either. Do we remember how the crowd at Jerusalem wanted to make Jesus a king and three days later they crucified Him? There is a day coming, when every act that we’ve done for the Lord will be duly noted and rewarded, even to giving a cup of water in His name (Mk. 9:41; Mt. 25:31-40). 

Jesus ministered to large crowds, but He was happy to go out of His way to minister to one lonely soul, such as the women at the well in Samaria (Jn 4:7-26). He, as our good Shepherd, would be happy to leave ninety nine righteous saints shouting the glory at the church house and to seek out a single lost sheep (Mt. 18:12). I trust that we feel the same way. 

There are millions of lost souls in this world who will never pass through the doors of our churches, unless someone gets off of the beaten path and seeks them out. Jails, nursing homes, homeless outreach  and assisted living facilities are full of downtrodden souls eager to hear an uplifting word.   

Philippians 2:8  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 

Jesus walked among men for thirty years before He began His ministry. He was not immune from the everyday household chores of His earthly family. He learned how to sweat and get His hands dirty while working in Joseph’s carpenter shop.  He also learned to have empathy for those who opposed themselves,  such as when He wept over those who were milling about as sheep who had no shepherd (Mt. 6:34) and for those whom He mentioned in Luke 4:18: The poor, the captive, the blind and the bruised  and  the broken hearted. When He suffered the temptations that are common to us (He. 4:15), He could have called legions of angels. No, He humbled Himself and did the will of His Father who had sent Him (Jn. 6:38). 

Hebrews 2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto [his] brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things [pertaining] to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. 

Jesus willingly submitted to humiliation and death  on the cross. It was not His will but He obediently submitted to the will of His Father. 

Luke 22:42 Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. 

It’s not likely that we’ll be suffering the agony of the cross, but it is still necessary that we submit our will to the will of God in each and every moment of the day. If we practice this in the little things, we'll be able to cope with the bigger things.   

Next week, we’ll see how God exalted Jesus because of His obedience to the cross and gave Him The Name that is above every name. 

Song: To Be Like Jesus

Somebody Has Said
 The devil knows that if he can capture our mind, he holds our future.  - Joe Campbell

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Don and Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries

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