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The Christ Hymn

Philippians 2:1-13

Therefore, if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort in love, any sharing in the Spirit, any sympathy, 2 complete my joy by thinking the same way, having the same love, being united, and agreeing with each other. 3 Don’t do anything for selfish purposes, but with humility think of others as better than yourselves. 4 Instead of each person watching out for their own good, watch out for what is better for others. 5 Adopt the attitude that was in Christ Jesus:

6 Though he was in the form of God, he did not consider being equal with God something to exploit. 7 But he emptied himself by taking the form of a slave and by becoming like human beings. When he found himself in the form of a human, 8 he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore, God highly honored him and gave him a name above all names, 10 so that at the name of Jesus everyone in heaven, on earth, and under the earth might bow 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

12 Therefore, my loved ones, just as you always obey me, not just when I am present but now even more while I am away, carry out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 God is the one who enables you both to want and to actually live out his good purposes.


Amy G. Ogdon explains the paradox of Jesus this way: “God chooses downward mobility against all expectations of a deity. In the ancient world, a god who was “born in human likeness” (verse 7) was a self-demoting God, hardly the sort of God useful for human life. This God doesn’t sound like a “winner,” like a mighty deity who comes to the aid of powerless humans or like a super kick-butt-and-take-names deity we want on our side. In fact, ancient folks were unlikely to trust the judgment of a “loser God” who chooses this sort of downward mobility.”


  • Jesus is a radically different God than the kind which we are used to, even if we grew up in church. How does Jesus choosing humanity reveal something special about who Jesus claims to be?

  • If humbleness is an essential part of being a Christian, how does you practice humility?


God of love, with praise we celebrate Jesus, who humbled himself so that every knee should bend and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Amen.

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