Advent Day 15: Jesus the Servant (Philippians 2v1-11)

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So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,[a] 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant,[b] being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

The wonder of the Christmas story is not found in the Gospels and Old Testament prophets alone. Paul, in writing to Christians in Philippi, declares that Jesus’ birth was the greatest demonstration of humility the world has ever seen. Greater than Queen Elizabeth II choosing to live in a 1 bedroom bungalow. Greater than President Obama leaving the Oval Office to become a road sweeper. Christmas is about the Son of God leaving the throne room of Heaven to take on humanity. Jesus was born as one of us. But there’s more than that. As Paul declares here, Jesus took on the form of a servant (literally ‘slave’). God came to serve.  That’s why Paul expects Christians everywhere to serve God, one another and the community around them. That’s Christmas. 

Christ Jesus,[a] 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant,[b] being born in the likeness of men.

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