Philippians "Have This Mind In You"
Each book in the Bible gently guides God's people into a more intimate relationship with their Creator, as He knows must occur, for His people to receive Him in the depth of the relationship that He purchased for them. Each day we are covering, in sequential order, one of the twenty-seven books of the New Testament and expecting people’s lives to change through the revelation of His leading in this way.
Today is the eleventh day of the series, and the book is, Philippians, the eleventh book in the New Testament as it appears in our Bible. Philippians is a letter written to a Christian community that Paul had an intimate relationship with, who had been contributing financially to his ministry for a considerable amount of time when this letter was written. The letter’s focus is to help people mentally know the positional relationship with God that is rightfully all of God’s children’s inheritance through Christ and the depth of God’s people’s relationships being valuable enough to be willing to wait to go to heaven.
In chapter one Paul tells his audience, “For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.” There is an utmost confidence in Paul’s tone that conveys the knowledge that if he departed from his body, he would definitely be with Christ. This knowing is not only for Paul, but God wants His people to know what lies ahead of them as well. When this knowledge is front and center of a person’s understanding, the stressors of life will be received differently than they were in the past; because knowing the worst thing that can happen to a human being is actually what allows Christians to be with Christ. This is extremely liberating to anyone who is able to receive it.
Paul continues by giving his people, “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:” Paul is sharing the mind of Christ with his audience, and this is revolutionary for people of his time and ours; however, it is what God has told us to have from Him. This statement says let this mind be in you. God is not telling people to conjure a mindset that is man-made, but to be freed from a human’s way of thinking and know it is neither unrealistic nor is it against God’s will to have God’s children understand what their rightful place of being is. This place is a level that enables God’s people to have a relationship with their Creator that is on an equal level. God is absolutely still in control and leading the way, but He desires His people to be comfortable with Him in a family style relationship that is not foreign in any way.
Paul then tells his people, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” This is conveying to the people of God that He gives His people both desires of their heart to desire what He has for them to desire and the ability to do the works that are set in their future to fulfill those desires. This is removing the works mentality even more out of the equation of what people had misunderstood all of their lives in the culture they lived in Paul’s time and in ours.
Paul continues by sharing, “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.” This is again attacking people’s earthly mindsets of all times. There is no room in God’s kingdom for people who are not in communion with Him and those who are not thinking like He does He will either correct them into His way of thinking or give them over to a mind that does not have the ability to receive His correction and is eternally damned.
In the fourth chapter Paul writes, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.” Which gives his people the things they are to be focused on and the reward of doing so. It is not about earning to receive, but there are automatic gifts that are received as God’s people live their lives in a certain way, and the ways of God that bring peace are not humanly achievable, but all things are possible with God.
Paul now shares with them what he has learned, “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” He is letting them know that he has received the ability to be content in whatever situation he is in and how it does not control who he is or how he feels. This state of freedom was not common during Paul’s time, and it is not common in our time, but it is able to be received through the grace of God. God knows what His people need to have in their lives and His people can be content knowing this is what shall always be.
The examples in this blog are only a limited sample of the deepening relational revelation described through the letter to the Philippians which displays how God desires for His people to know what their relationship should look like and what level of confidence this will bring.
The intent of the blog is to demonstrate the difference in the revelation that God gives to His people as they intently follow Him and focus on what He has told them through their individual lives and the revelation they’ve received through the Holy Spirit and His Holy Bible.