Philippians 2: Hanging onto "Stuff"

by Bob Young
[permission is given to reprint with credit noted]

Sermon Text: Philippians 2:5-11

I was recently reading Philippians 2. The text says that Jesus did not consider his position of equality with God as something to be grasped. He had to let go of it to accomplish his purpose. He emptied himself. As I read the passage, I noted that Jesus let go of a number of things in order to accomplish our salvation. I thought about our tendency to hang on to the "stuff" of life.

What are some of the things Jesus let go of to accomplish our salvation? What are some thing he did not hang onto? What did Jesus let go of?

  • Equality with God
  • Lordship, he became a servant
  • Exclusive Deity, he became human, somehow combining the divine and the human
  • Authority, he became nothing
  • Position, he humbled himself
  • Physical life, he was obedient unto death

    We Christians are tempted to hang on to the things that give us security, meaning, position, and stability. Some of these are mentioned by Jesus when he called his disciples to take up their crosses to follow him (Luke 14:25-27). What are the applications for us in our tendency to hang on to the "stuff" of life? What are the lessons and parallels for us? What do we want to hang onto?

  • Prestige and prominence
  • Reputation
  • Exalted positions
  • Authority
  • Possessions
  • Relationships

    What does it mean to follow Jesus in his attitude or mind? How do we imitate his "emptying" and sacrifice? What result can we expect?

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    Last updated November 4, 2011