(Philippians 2:4-11), " Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."
We come to the third lesson in our series on, “The First Family of Christmas” in which we are examining a different member of this family to learn some lessons from their lives that will help us to keep our minds and hearts focused upon celebrating the true meaning of Christmas, but also help us to become better Christians and servants of the Lord. In our first study we examined “Mary, the Mother of Jesus” and the lessons that we learn from her life that can help us be better servants of the Lord if we apply them to our lives. We saw first, "The Commonness of Mary's Life" and learned that "God uses common ordinary people to accomplish His work in this world and that God wants to use you." Secondly, we saw the "Consecration of Mary's Life" and learned that "God wants us to live godly, holy lives, and if we do God Himself will commend us from heaven.” Lastly, we saw "The Commitment of Mary's Life" and learned that "we must willingly submit every area of our lives to God if we are going to accomplish His will in our lives." In this study we are going to examine Joseph, the earthly Father of Jesus.” In our last study, we examined the Joseph, the earthly father of the Jesus and saw, "The Commonness of Joseph's Life" and learned as we did from Mary, "that God uses common ordinary people to accomplish His work in this world and that He wants to use you." Secondly, we saw "The Consecration of Joseph's Life" and learned "God wants you to live a holy, godly life, and dedicate yourself to Him for His honor and glory." Thirdly, we saw, "The Courage of Joseph's Life" and learned "that it takes courage on our part for God's will to be done in our lives." In this lesson we are going to examine the life of Jesus and see some lessons from His life that will help us to be better Christians and servants of the Lord.
- THE CRADLE (JESUS, THE EXAMPLE OF HUMILITY) (Philippians 2:5-6)
As you study the life of Jesus in the gospels there is one characteristic in His life that was prominent over all the other characteristics of His life and that was "humility." Humility was the great characteristic of Jesus life because He is God who became man so that He might pay our sin debt so that we can be saved. Jesus taught us humility, not as a life-style, but as a death-style, as a dying to our self-life that comes when we humble and lower ourselves before God, and submitting to His authority through obedience to His Word and the Holy Spirit.
- THE CROSS (JESUS, THE EXAMPLE OF OBEDIENCE) (Philippians 2:5-8)
There is a very clear truth taught in the New Testament that is often overlooked and that is Jesus, when He was here on this earth, He honored His Father through complete obedience in carrying out every detail according to the will of His Father. Jesus was "Obedient as a Son" to his earthly parents. (Luke 2:52a), “And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them” Secondly, Jesus was "Obedient as a Servant" and lived a life of obedience to God the Father. (John 6:38), "For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me." Thirdly, Jesus was "Obedient as a Sacrifice" in which He died upon the cross for the sins of the world. (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’ full surrender and complete obedience to the Father is an example of how we all should live our lives before God.
- THE CROWN (JESUS, THE EXAMPLE OF EXALTATION) (Philippians 2:9-11)
Because Jesus humbled Himself and because Jesus was obedient unto the cross, He was exalted. God the Father has given Him a name at which every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord to the glory of God the Father. Here’s the lesson we learn: "God rewards those who humble themselves before Him and live in obedient service to Him."
Pastor Allen Jackson