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  • Shawn Thornton

Make Much of Jesus!

Sunday - August 9th Scripture to Read for Today's Devotional: Philippians 2:1-11

Today's Selection from our Sermon on the Mount Reading Plan: Matthew 6:1-4

In your relationships with one

another, have the same

mindset as Jesus Christ.

Philippians 2:5

Sometimes, I love to read a text in an English version of the Bible and then read it in a paraphrase of the Bible. There is a difference between a Bible "version" and a "paraphrase." A Bible "version" is produced by a committee of Hebrew and Greek translation experts. A Bible "paraphrase" is a translation from an English version into someone's own words. Individual Bible scholars or pastors with a known quality for their ministries tend to be the ones who get their paraphrases published. Generally, their wording of the Scriptures is written in current common language and expression (usually not slang).

You can click on Philippians 2:1-11 above and read the Scripture text about being like Jesus in the New International Version. After you have read that, read the paraphrase below of the same passage in Pastor Eugene Peterson's The Message. You will read the same passage you read in the New International Version, but in The Message. In our world today, it is so important to know how Jesus lived and loved. Philippians 2:1-11 gives us a clear picture of how Christ lived and loved. Reading it in a version and a paraphrase can help you see different facets of what it means to be like Christ!

Philippians 2:1-11 (The Message)

If you've gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care— then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don't push your way to the front; don't sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don't be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.

Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn't think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn't claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death—and the worst kind of death at that: a crucifixion.

Because of that obedience, God lifted him high and honored him far beyond anyone or anything, ever, so that all created beings in heaven and on earth—even those long ago dead and buried—will bow in worship before this Jesus Christ, and call out in praise that he is the Master of all, to the glorious honor of God the Father.

Whatever you do today or wherever you go, Make Much of Jesus!

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