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How can a Christian Spiritually Grow into Christ-likeness
To continue to desire the Word of God
To passionately pursue the Knowledge of the Lord
To seek to have an eternal Focus
To endeavor to live the Mind of Christ
1 Corinthians 2:16 “For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.”
It is an amazing thing to have the mind of Christ. As Christians, our minds are renewed by God through His Word and by His Spirit.
It is one thing to know the mind of Christ, but it is another thing to Live it.
It is one thing to know the Will of God, but it is another to fulfil it.
It is one thing to hear the Words of Christ, but it is another thing to observe them.
Do you know we can be entertained by the truth of God’s Word by being heavily convicted, but doing nothing about it? As growing Christians we must endeavor to have the mind of Christ and live it.
Galatians 5:25 “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.”
As we have the mind of Christ revealed to us by The Word of God and by His Spirit, we must live it out.
By the Way, there are so many blessings that come from submitting to what we know we ought to do as Christ-Followers.
Note: When we live the mind Christ:
What kind of life did He live before us that we might follow?
TURN TO: Philippians 2:1-8
Philippians 2:5 “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:”
Paul is now going show before the eyes of the Philippians the example of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Philippians 2:6-7 “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:VS 7But made himself of no reputation…”
Jesus Christ – God, is the perfect example of someone who was selfless. He had others on His mind. The next verse before us describes what it means when Jesus “…made Himself of no Reputation…”
Philippians 2:7 “But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:”
2. SERVING MIND - “…and took upon him the form of a servant.”
4. SUBMISSIVE MIND
Philippians 2:8 “And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
Jesus humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death. He obeyed even though it cost Him His life.
2 Timothy 4:3 "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears"
The Apostle Paul warns Timothy that there will come a time when people will not tolerate sound, divine teaching; but because of their lustful desire will follow after teachers that will tickle ears by preaching and teaching things that justify lustful, selfish living. They will even twist the Word of God to do it.
The most popular verses and messages people love to hear are those relating to personal blessings and possessions. But the unpopular verses and messages are those relating to separation, sacrifice, and surrender. People love to hear about the love of God, but when it comes to the Holiness of God and the righteousness of God they shy away. People love to hear about what God has sacrificed for them, but when it comes to sacrificing something for God it is hard to the ears. You will notice the loudest Amen’s are when we pray giving thanks for our food, but when a message is given on fasting it is usually shot down as a religious tradition that is only practiced by legalistic religious people.
The Christ-like life is all about Sacrifice and Surrender to the will of God. The whole Bible from Genesis to Revelation is all about living to submit to the ways of God and striving to be like God.
Proverbs 6:23 “… and reproofs of instruction are the way of life:”
We are living in that “time” – the time when fewer and fewer people want to hear convicting and challenging messages, and instead labeling them as negative preaching. They are more comfortable in hearing positive messages that only appeals to fleshy and carnal nature. However, God gives us a reason why people turn away their ears from sound divine teachings.
2 Timothy 4:3 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts…”
They give in to their lustful ways. Instead of fearing God, obeying the Scriptures, and changing their ways, they would rather listen to a teacher that changes the Word of God to fit their comfortable, unholy lifestyle. They love themselves too much; so therefore they despise preaching that challenges them to live fully and wholeheartedly for God. They are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.
Paul is encouraging Timothy and every preacher not to change the message to fit-in with people’s lifestyle, but rather to PREACH THE WORD as it is.
2 Timothy 4:2 “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.”
Someone once said “We preach the Bible as it is; to men and women as they are.” “In season, out season…” At all times, and in every season, just PREACH THE WORD! whether people want to hear or don’t, whether you feel like it or don’t, JUST PREACH THE WORD as it is; and we as listeners that are disciples and students of the Word must endure sound, divine teachings that are the whole counsel of God’s HOLY Word. 1 Thessalonians 5:19-20 “Quench not the Spirit. Vs 20 Despise not prophesyings.”
Philippians 3:18-21 "(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: vs 19 Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.) vs 20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: vs 21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself."
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
This verse (John 3:16) is a famous Bible verse amongst the believers and non-believers. It is a rich verse that proves God’s love through one of the greatest promises ever given to man – the promise of “everlasting life”.
DL Moody once said, “God never made a promise that was too good to be true.”
God planned, prepared, and promised eternal life with Him in Heaven before the world even began.
Titus 1:2 “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.”
Unfortunately, in the beginning of creation the devil effectively deceived people into rebelling against God and living life without Him, causing them to miss out on God’s greatest promise.
To rebel against God and live without the Creator is sinful and has brought about an eternal death, which has been passed on to all of humanity.
Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:”
Notice what Jesus said prior to John 3:16…John 3:14 “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:”
In John 3 Jesus is speaking to a Pharisee named Nicodemus, and Jesus points him back to the time when the children of Israel fell into sin as Moses was leading them to the Promised and Land (which is a picture of eternal life). Jesus was reminding Nicodemus of God’s Great Salvation that he offered them.
John 3:16 reminds us about a few things regarding Salvation:
1. The Source of Salvation
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world…”
2. The Sacrifice of Salvation
John 3:16 “…that he gave his only begotten Son…”
3. The Scope of Salvation
John 3:16 “…that whosoever believeth in him..."
4. The Seriousness of Salvation
John 3:16 “…should not perish..."
5. The Security of Salvation
John 3:16 “…but have everlasting life.”
Jesus said in John 10:10 “...I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”
Philippians 2:2 “Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.”
As we serve the Lord and one another, the Lord desires us to be in the “same love, being of one accord, of one mind.”
This love and mindset is not self-seeking, but rather it is to be other-esteeming; it is unconditional. It expects nothing in return. We never ought to serve to get gain, or do a good deed to be praised. We should never keep a list of what we have done for others to use it against them.
Romans 12:9 “Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.”
We must love and serve without hypocrisy. This love is to be genuine. We are to serve others for others.
Romans 12:10 “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;”
Philippians 2:3 “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory;
Frustration and resentment will start to build up in a person’s life when they serve to be seen. Some will only serve to be seen or they will not serve at all. The Bible mentions that this is vain. Remember, we are all servants of the Lord, and we must seek to serve for God’s glory. If we have God’s glory in mind when we serve, we will be able to serve others better and esteem them better than ourselves.
Colossians 3:22-23 “Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God: vs 23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;”
Philippians 2:4 “Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.”
We all have a specific part to play in the body of Christ. One person is a foot, another a hand, and another is an eye, etc. We are to seek to help each other become all that God has planned to be in the Body. I have never seen any of my body parts not willing to help each other. When I have an itch on my leg, I use my hand to scratch it to bring some relief. I use my eyes to help me see what happened to my sore arm. When I seek to serve others with love I fulfil the Law of Christ. We are to have a heart that rejoices to see others used and blest by God and for God’s glory.
How can this be done? How can we esteem others better than self?
The Mind of Christ!
Philippians 2:5 “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:”
If we are to have the mind of Christ we are to maintain a close walk with God and His Word. Jesus is the greatest example to us; He lived a life that was fully submitted to the will of the Heavenly Father.
(Philippians 2:6) Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
Philippians 2:7) But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
Jesus Christ (who is God) was willing to become a servant in the likeness of a Man. What an amazing testimony! God demonstrates what it truly means to esteem others better than self. God was willing to be poor so we could be rich in Christ. God was willing to be a servant so we could be joint-heirs with Christ.
Obedient unto death
(Philippians 2:8) And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Jesus submitted to the Heavenly Father’s divine plan; however, with that submission came sacrifice. To esteem others better than ourselves means we must sacrifice.
Dr. J.H. Jowett said, “Ministry that costs nothing accomplishes nothing.” If we want to have a ministry toward God and others that truly matters, we have to be willing to make sacrifices and pay the price. This is having the Mind of Christ.