For me, verse 2 is a challenge, and verses 3-4 are instructions to help us achieve the unity that brings about joy. However, verses 3-4 are themselves a challenge as well, and I should be continually evaluating my actions, intentions, and motivations to determine if they are selfish or selfless. Anything I do that is done with the mindset that I am just as good or better than others needs to be re-evaluated, not because I don’t have worth, but because I shouldn’t be focusing on my worth relative to others.
Thanks Peter. Good word. Reminds me how various other passages encourage us to obedience and suffering and humility from a place of victory. We aren’t asked to be humble because we are worthless , but because we are irrevocably children of God (as you said)! From this place of victory, we can freely stop thinking of ourselves and be used for the sake of others, knowing our God has an inheritance and a reward waiting for us. Like it says later in the chapter, Jesus was obedient for the glory set before Him.
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