Opening Prayer Thoughts
Praise and confession.
- Praise God that He has revealed to us, in simple language, what the Lord Jesus did in coming to earth, living and dying on the cross.
- Confess the sin of knowing these truths but not fully grasping the implications of them for your life.
Doctrine for the Mind and Heart.
Westminster Shorter Catechism, Question 55 – What is forbidden in the third commandment?
Answer – The third commandment forbids all unworthy use of anything by which God makes himself known.
Proof Texts – Leviticus 19:12; Matthew 5:33-37; James 5:12
Comment – Great care has to be taken when speaking of God, His names, His titles, His character and His works. Thoughtlessness is, and can be, no excuse.
This is taken from https://matt2819.com/wsc where you will find proof texts.
Verse to memorise.
Philippians 2:5-7a. “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who though He was in the form of God, … made himself nothing.”
Pray and ask for the Holy Spirit's help as you read God's Word.
Please read Philippians 2:5-7.
Notes written by Rev. Philip Dunwoody (Dervock, RPCI), with slight amendments.
Ch 2:5-7. Our Humble God.
It is no exaggeration to say that these passages are among the most important of the whole Bible. We should pay close attention, and think reverently and carefully about what we find here concerning the person and work of Jesus. We saw last week that Paul wants the Philippians to be humble Christians who put the needs of others ahead of themselves. Now, he gives the greatest example of this imaginable.
Notice the description of who Christ is (verse 6). Paul says Jesus "was in the form of God"; other translations say Jesus, "being in very nature God…". Our minds struggle to understand this, but before Jesus was the baby in the manger, he was God from all eternity. Jesus had no beginning. Father, Son and Holy Spirit were there before the earth itself existed.
Notice also the position Christ gave up (Verses 6-7). Paul says that Jesus "did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped" - in other words, Jesus didn't try to cling on to his rightful place as God to avoid doing an unpleasant job; he sacrificed his authority, the highest place in heaven, to come down into the misery and darkness of this sin-cursed world. Sometimes we try to excuse ourselves from difficult or unpleasant tasks because we think we're too important for them. Someone else can talk to that strange new neighbour; someone else can clean up after the big event; someone else can serve in that way in the church. We avoid these things perhaps thinking we are too important to do them.
But Jesus Christ, the second Person of the Trinity, didn't cling on to his rightful place as highest, greatest, most significant; he gave it up - "made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant". We will consider tomorrow what Jesus the Servant did for us. But for now, consider this: the most important Person, who ever lived, came to earth and took the lowest position on offer. He came to serve, and to save. Yet, should we not remember the heights of glory in which our God dwells; and the depths of service to which he was willing to stoop?
Sing with joy in your heart to God.
Psalm 107D. Link to the words. Link to it being sung.
Thank God that we can experience new life through the death of the Lord Jesus. Pray for the help of the Holy Spirit to live that new life to God’s glory.
Yours in Christ,
Rev. Dr. Andrew Quigley
Minister, Ottawa RPC