Mindset of Jesus

Why do you think like that? We all have a pattern or direction of thought. Our minds are directed from something and directed to something. We all have a worldview, meaning our thinking is based on a set of principles or from a certain standpoint.

In Paul’s letter to the Philippian Church, he encouraged them to have the “mind of Christ”. If we think that having the mind of Christ is a far jump for us, consider that the Greek word in Philippians is a verb meaning to be minded in a certain way. It is like having our thinking oriented like Jesus or the direction of our thoughts and life is like Him.

As we are discussing this, why would the Word of God direct us to do something that is impossible? We often discount the possibility of what God wants to do in us and through us. So why would we discount the possibility of our thought patterns in line with Jesus?

Philippians 2:5-8 NKJV
(5) Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,
(6) who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God,
(7) but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.
(8) And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus”

These scriptures give a powerful rundown of the mindset of Jesus. As we read the list of His attributes, we can easily lose sight of its correlation and directives to us. He wants us to have a similar mindset to Jesus.

“Who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God”

Jesus knew who He was, the eternal Son of God. He never wavered from His purpose even when some wanted to get ahead of God’s program. Even Peter tried to reprimand Jesus after the disciples were warned of His soon arrest, death, and resurrection but received a rebuke from Jesus instead.

Jesus scolded him, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men” (Matthew 16:23 NKJV).

We need to have the mind of Christ, knowing our identity in Him and the purpose of God for our lives. Other people will always have a plan in mind for us that may not be God’s will or purpose. They will try to twist and turn us into what they want us to be. They may even try to shame us by our past trying to disqualify us for the plan of God.

Knowing our identity in Christ and our purpose from God will begin the journey of having the mind of Christ.

“Made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men”

The first sacrifice of Jesus was leaving the peace of Heaven for the chaos of earth. He is God yet he lays aside His robes of glory to wear the woolen clothes of the Son of Man. He left the golden streets of Heaven for the dust of Galilee and the dung filled streets of Jerusalem.

He is King of kings but was not born in a palace to a queen but was born in a stable to a common village girl.

When we have the heart of a servant, we are exhibiting the mind of Christ. Jesus often taught this kingdom principle saying, “And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:27-28 NKJV).

Learn to serve. In the Kingdom of God, if you are not willing to serve, you disqualify yourself for leadership.

“And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

Jesus humbled Himself even more by being willing to die even the excruciating death of the cross. Jesus’ primary purpose for coming in the likeness of men was to die on the cross for the sins of humanity.

The simple Gospel message is Jesus Christ crucified and resurrected for the sins of mankind. “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21 NKJV).

The simple message for those who desire to have the mind of Christ is, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me” (Matthew 16:24 NKJV).

“Therefore God also has highly exalted Him”

The follow-up scripture to Jesus’ mindset of servanthood is the Father’s exaltation of His obedient Son found in Philippians 2:9-11 (NKJV).

(9) Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,
(10) that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,
(11) and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

God exalts His Son Jesus to the point of being above all. Jesus was always God but subjected Himself to the confines of a human body and to human existence in order to ransom a lost world. So “therefore God also has highly exalted Him…”

Though we will never be exalted to the prominence of Jesus, God honors and exalts those who take on the mindset of Jesus. “And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted” (Matthew 23:12 NKJV).

Finally

Let this mind be in us which was also in Christ Jesus. Which way is our head turned? What is our mindset? Are we thinking in the direction of Jesus or the ways of the world?

In the grand scheme of things, in the culture of the Kingdom of God those who humble themselves as servants, who are willing to die to and in the purpose of God, are those who exemplify a life in Christ.

Yours on the Journey,

Harry L. Whitt

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