07.03.2022 | MORE & MORE | Wk 4: “Emptying Like Christ”
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What is the biggest sacrifice you’ve ever had to make for someone else?
On Sunday, we continued our series More & More, E3’s summer series on the Book of Philippians (Paul’s letter to the church in Philippi).
First, read Philippians 2:1-4. Paul begins this next section of his letter by discussing the critical importance of unity & humility in Christian community, holding up both as central to our way of life & witness to the world.
What imagery & characteristics standout from Paul’s description of Christian community here?
What makes the image of community that Paul describes here so challenging & counter-cultural?
Next, read Philippians 2:5-11. In this second section, Paul moves into the Christ Hymn, which acts as the centerpiece of Philippians. For Paul, the example of Christ found in this beautiful hymn empowers & models for us how to live out the image of community found in the previous verses. Paul depicts Christ as:
- Radically humble
- Utterly self-sacrificial & selfless
- Willing to empty himself of honor, status, & prestige
- Refusing to use his power & privilege as the Son of God for his own advantage
- Exalted through his humiliation/humility (not by avoiding such things)
How do these two sections intertwine?
How does this image of Christ turn upside-down things like power, authority, & influence?
How does this image of Christ impact how we think about our own moments of humiliation & ego-defeat?
Why does Paul believe that this image of Christ is central for empowering us & modeling for us how to create true Christian community?
Why is embodying this hymn in our own relationships & community central to our counter-cultural witness as the Body of Christ?
Where do you struggle & succeed at embodying the image of Christ found in this hymn within your own relationships & community? In what relationship or community situation do you need to adopt it to a greater degree in this season?
Getting Out of the Hole
During this series, take time each week to read & meditate on each section of Philippians that we cover. This week:
- Read Philippians 2:1-11. In particular, focus on the image of Christ found in verse 5-11. Write down or underline key words or phrases in the passage.
- Meditate on where Paul’s description of Christian community & Christ speaks into your own relationships & behavior in your community (either to convict or uplift).
- Journal on where this image of Christ might upend how you engage issues of conflict, control, power, sacrificial service, community involvement, & leadership. Where do you need to embody this image of Christ in your life more & more over this season?
- Read through Philippians 2:1-11 again. Ask God to help you further adopt the image of Christ in this passage so that you can help build the beautiful image of community depicted. Commit to taking a step forward within our E3 community before the end of summer.
Journal, reflect, & pray on how God might be speaking to you through each week’s teaching. Share your experience with your growth group next week!
The Story of God Bible Commentary by Lynn H. Cohick
Resident Aliens by Stanley Hauerwas
A Hidden Wholeness by Parker Palmer
Coming Up This Week:*
Sunday, July 10rd: Join us next Sunday for week 5 of our series More & More, where we will continue walking through Paul’s Letter to the Philippians! * Please see mye3.org for details.