So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.
This passage is so rich with gospel truth that entire books are written on the subject. It is impossible for me to cover or unpack this entire passage in a few brief words, but I do want to take a moment to point us toward how to walk in greater freedom.
If you take a moment to read the passage above, it would seem contrary to the human intellect that I would talk about increasing our freedom in Christ by pointing to this chapter. In our cultural context, we think of freedom as the ability to do whatever we want to do, whenever we want to do it. However, I want to make the claim that true freedom is defined quite differently.
Freedom, real Christ-given freedom, is not the absence of rules or regulations. It is not the ability to do whatever we want, whenever we want it. True freedom is doing exactly what you were created to do. It is only when we discover our true destiny and calling that we can fully walk in our God-given freedom.
To think of others as more significant as ourselves (verse 3) or not dare grasp at equality with God or men, but rather to be humble (verses 6-7) are patterns of living that seem counter-intuitive to our happiness. However, it is in dying to ourselves that we truly find our lives (Matthew 16:24-26)
Today, I want us to think about where we are buying into the lies of our culture; where we are wanting to exert our own desires over and above the desires of God. My prayer is that as we read this and recognize the profound way in which Christ emptied himself in submission to the will of God. Furthermore, that we would be gripped by Christ’s example to empty ourselves of our own plans and purposes for life. It is in expressing obedience to the will of God that we find the sustaining freedom that only Christ can give.