Thursday, September 21

What makes unity possible

Scripture: Philippians 2

Philippians 2:2–5 …complete my joy and be of the same mind, by having the same love, being united in spirit, and having one purpose. 3 Instead of being motivated by selfish ambition or vanity, each of you should, in humility, be moved to treat one another as more important than yourself. 4 Each of you should be concerned not only about your own interests, but about the interests of others as well. 5 You should have the same attitude toward one another that Christ Jesus had…

Observation

Paul appeals to the Philippian Christians to be united: “of the same mind, the same love, united in spirit, having one purpose.” How is that possible? 

It is only possible if each one puts others ahead of themselves and has the same attitude as Jesus (described in v. 5-8) who emptied and gave Himself for others. 

It is only possible if each one eschews selfish ambition and vanity, and embraces humility. 

Selfishness is the arch-enemy of unity. Humility, selflessness and love are it’s engines.

Application

Unity is not only Paul’s concern but God’s. It is the focus of Jesus’ great prayer in John 17. 

But unity is difficult to achieve whether in a friendship, a marriage, a family, or a church. I’m struck today by the obvious connection between unity and humility, unity and selflessness. As soon as we put self ahead of others, unity is jeopardized. 

So my task today is to “treat others as more important than myself” and “be concerned about the interests of others” and “have the same attitude as Christ.” Be others-focused, humble and selfless. 

Prayer: Lord I love You…and I need Your help to do this. You know that my selfishness runs deep. Help me today to put others ahead of myself just as You did.

More: Isaiah 41-42, Psalm 110, Matthew 3