Wednesday, December 17, 2014

LEARNING FROM CHRIST: CARING FOR OTHERS

Do we appreciate the selfless sacrifice of Jesus Christ?
In Philippians 2, we have presented the selfish Christ who gave His all for the salvation of sinners. He "emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant" and "humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point fo death, even death on a cross" and He did this for us and our eternal salvation, v7,8.
For what reason is Paul telling the Philippians this? Because he says they need to "work out their salvation", v12. This is an admonition that immediately follows the reminder to them of what Christ has done for them. How should they respond to the work of Christ to save their souls? They should strive for unity with their fellow Christians and care for others and not just themselves.
He said, "Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others", v4.
Selfish Christians are not allowing God to work in their lives. After telling the Christians to "work out their salvation with fear and trembling", Paul says, "for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure", v13. It seems that the message of Jesus should cause the good heart to yield to God so that God can then work His good pleasure in the Christian.
When the church is divided and treating one another with unkindness, there is no real appreciation for the selfless sacrifice of Jesus.

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