Reading this morning in Philippians and meditating on the humility of Jesus:
“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.” Philippians 2:5-7
We can trust Jesus because he showed us that He puts our needs before His own. He didn’t just think it was a morally superior concept to consider others than better than yourself- he made difficult choices in order to demonstrate it.
Think about it…Jesus, fully God, dwelling in glory and perfect unity with the Father and Spirit. Then one day the Father says, “Jesus, you know how much We love them (humanity). Would you go and communicate Our love to them? Will you be My very Word to them? It will be costly, it will require you being in their likeness forever.” And I can imagine Jesus with delight saying “Yes! I would love to serve them- it’s the very thing I love to do, I would be honored to lay down my life for them.”
These are some of the ways Jesus demonstrated humility:
1. Choosing to bear the image (body) of humanity forever.
When Jesus took on the form of a human being in Mary’s womb, he signed up to have a human body forever. Jesus has a physical, tangible, resurrected, and glorified body RIGHT NOW. We have even been given a description of what He looks like in Revelation 1. I love this because it helps me know that when I pray, I am talking with a real Man, at the right hand of the Father. Consider the proofs that Jesus gave after His resurrection- he ate food with them, he allowed the disciples to touch the wounds in His body which He will forever carry as the slain Lamb. And He plans to transform our bodies into the image of His- see Philippians 3:20-21.
2. Choosing to be born in low status.
If I was the King of the Universe and I was making a visit to the planet I created, I would probably want to do it in style and show. But Jesus was born into controversial circumstances to a young couple who were of no respectable status according to the times. In modern day, Jesus would have born into a family who probably couldn’t afford the latest technology and his earthly dad would have a blue collar job. Of course, none of this stuff matters in the eyes of the Lord- Mary and Joseph were chosen to parent Jesus because they had hearts that submitted to God and sought Him.
3. Choosing to die in humiliation.
Jesus submitted Himself to death just 3 years after beginning His earthly ministry. We would say He was just barely getting started in fulfilling His “calling”! But He trusted in the timing and leadership of His Father. He submitted Himself to a publicly humiliating death- crucifixion at the time was a typical death for common criminals. The Beloved Son of the Father allowed Himself to be killed as a common criminal! Who is this One?
He is the trustworthy One. I can trust Him because in every way where man would choose to exert power or justify himself, Jesus considers how he can benefit me, even when it caused Him to really suffer. I can trust Him to always be working for my greatest good. And I can draw strength from His Spirit in me, beckoning me to labor for the greatest good in others.