Enjoying The Self-Emptying
Philippians 2:5-11 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
The fact that Christ came in flesh – becoming a man, being humiliated, suffering, and taking on the form of a servant so that you could enjoy him far greater than ever before – should bring the believer to enjoy this truth of the gospel, to glorify His work.
Christ came to earth taking on the believersâ€™ flesh, nature, and the humiliation that came with it; suffering in it and becoming a servant, to then lay down His life for what He took on. How great that is! Christ, fully divine – the Lord of all creation – came and not only took on this human flesh, but lowered Himself like us. This is what we call the doctrine of the Kenosis. This doctrine is the fact that the eternal existence of Christ came here to earth. In doing so, it is a fact that, He being the Lord of all, Christ in full deity came and lowered Himself into a human body – being like that of humanity and placing His divinity aside. He did not lose any of His divinity, but placed it aside (in the sense that He took on humanity). It is of most importance when dealing with this truth of the gospel, to know that Christâ€™s self- emptying and the permitting of His human state did not take away or lose any bit of His deity in any way, shape, or form. Christ was fully human and divine!
86This emptiness was self-imposed, as Christ wanted to take on this human form for the believer. Christ knew what this meant for the sake of the gospel, as it would be that which would take on the sins of the world. By doing so, Christ knew that this humanity that He would take on would have to bear those sins upon the cross. To this He became a slave. His becoming the likeness of men, for men, is amazing! How great it is that the Lord in divinity, came down to become like that which He loved so dearly; and even more so for the believer to boast in that they serve a Christ who came and emptied Himself so that He could provide a way of victory over sin – being their sin bearer.
Christ, allowing Himself to do so, must be boasted in. Christâ€™s full deity came to partake where the believer sins every day, every hour. And how great it is to say that He never sinned! Christ fully left the heavens, and He never sinned one time in His humanity – and He did this for the believer. However, He did not do this so that the believer can get a free ticket to heaven and use Him. He did this so that the believer can enjoy Him, in making God center of their lives, and Christ magnified among all things. In Americaâ€™s culture today it is often looked upon that Christ was human; and that is not tested. But when boasting in Christ – since He came here to earth in both humanity and divinity – the believer must stand for this truth; and finding delight in that Christ did not lose anything when He came for them, makes it glorious. But most important of all for the believer who boasts in this, is to live it out. The believer can boast in the exact resemblance of what the believer should be like. The believer, learning how to be humble, lifts Christâ€™s life here on earth above all things. As well as becoming a servant to those around them and helping others in areas of need, they may resemble what Christ did for His people. That is, giving their life; for if the cause of Christ calls them into suffering in remote places of the earth, they make Christ be known and boasted in, for the believersâ€™ delight in life. Christ living out these truthsÂ accomplished two things: it showed how He gave the gospel to the believer, and also how to live theÂ gospel.