Listen to this morning’s Scripture Song – Psalm 61:1 – 3
Read the “1212 Evening and Morning“ devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon.
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:” (Philippians 2:5)
“For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 2:16)
I just want to jot down a quick thought from the Scriptures this morning that I hope will be a blessing to you. Jesus is God. As God, He is equal with the Father in everything. Jesus is omniscient, meaning that there is nothing that He does not know. There is nothing that escapes His mind, unless He chooses to not remember it. Here in our text, the Bible is not referring to omniscience, but rather it is referring to Christ’s attitude. He had the mind of a servant; not the knowledge of a servant, but the humility of a servant. As God, He could have demanded that all of humanity bow the knee to Him. He also could have demanded that every creature in the universe should serve His every desire. But that is not what He did, is it?
It is funny how little, sinful man who is by nature a lowly servant, and has no right to boast at all, is always trying to magnify himself; trying to make himself look better in the eyes of other men. Yet Jesus, who deserves all of the glory, humbled Himself, even unto death. Why, because He loves us. If He demonstrated His love through a form of humility, ought not we do the same thing. We are so full of ourselves. God tells us here that we should have the same mind, the same humble attitude that Christ demonstrated when He came to this earth to be born of a woman, to live a selfless life of service to men, and finally to die a horrible death on the cross in order to atone for your sins and mine.
“And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:44-45)
“Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” (John 13:13-17)
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Memory passage for the month of November – Luke 1:26 – 38
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Micah 6:8
“I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing. Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.” – (Philippians 3:14-17)
“Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” – (1 Corinthians 11:1)
“Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.” – (Hebrews 13:7)
Have you noticed that there are a lot of people out there in this world who are trying to get you to follow them. They want you to follow them on Facebook, or on Twitter, or on some other social media site. Some people want you to follow them politically. Some people want you to follow them as they perform for you in athletics, or in the entertainment world. But, where do these people want you to follow them to? Just where are they going? Did you ever stop to think that the people you may be following are going in a direction that you do not want to go?
Paul exhorted several different groups of people in the Scriptures to follow him also, but Paul was very careful to point out that people should only follow him as he was following the Lord. I do not have a problem with following the example of other men (or women), as long as they are going the same direction that I am going:
“Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” – (Amos 3:3)
The Apostle Paul was going in the right direction. He was pressing toward the mark. What was his mark? What was He aiming for? Where was he going? He wanted to get close to Christ:
“That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;” – (Philippians 3:10)
Paul was following hard after the Lord. He was, as A.W. Tozer would put it, “in pursuit of God”. I can follow a guy like the Apostle Paul. I can also follow some men that are alive today that are also pursuing God, and are a little further down the road than I am. I must be careful though: my goal is not men, but Christ; and if one of my mentors veers off of the path, I must forsake him, and keep my focus on the Lord. Paul teaches us this principle also in Philippians 3:18 – 19
“(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)” – (Philippians 3:18-19)
We need to be careful who we are following. Many of the leaders in Christianity are not going in the right direction.
I also need to keep in mind that I have an obligation to the ones who may be following behind me. I need to lead them in a straight path to the Lord. I need to be the right example. Paul admonished Timothy that he needed to be the right role model for the people who followed him:
“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” – (1 Timothy 4:12)
So we need to be careful to only follow those who are leading us to the Lord, and then we must also make sure that we are being the right example to those who are following after us.
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(Second Milers also read – Psalm 56 – 60; Memorize – Micah 5:2)
“Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;” – (Philippians 1:27)
If a church is going to be able to fulfil the Lord’s Great Commission it will have to have unity. Paul wrote to this church in Philippi encouraging than to have one spirit and one mind as they are fulfilling their one purpose. Of course they had to be unified in the right thing. Paul explains in chapter two that the mind that they were to have was the mind of Christ:
“Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. 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:” – (Philippians 2:3-7)
As a church, the Bible says that we are to strive together for the faith of the gospel. The word “strive” has the idea of laboring together and in harmony with those around us. We labor for one purpose. We have both a common cause and a common enemy. Because the need is so great, we set aside our petty preferences and differences for the greater good. There will be many minor issues that we may not agree about, but because our faith and our love for our Saviour is strong we fight on together, winning people to Christ and training the disciples of the Lord.
Soulwinning is the glue that seems to hold our people together. Soulwinners don’t get sidetracked into squabbling about the small stuff. They keep “the main thing the main thing”. As a church, we must keep the winning of souls at the forefront of everything we do. If the church keeps a soulwinning fervor, their will be little for us to fight about amongst ourselves. However, when we stop fighting the devil on the outside of the church, we will find ourselves fighting each other inside of the church.
Let’s stay on the battlefield striving together against the devil for the souls of men.
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