Thinking of Others

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”  Php 2:3 ESV

Love is the greatest commandment given by God to His people.  When Christ was asked what the greatest commandment in the Law was, His response was, ““You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”  Mat 22:37-40.  Notice the focus on love in these two commandments Christ considered most important.  Everything the Law and the Prophets said and did was grounded in love. 

Let us look at the Ten Commandments and see where love fits into this focus.

  1. I am the LORD your God, which have brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 3 You shall have no other gods before me.
  2. You shall not make unto you any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: You shall not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my Commandments.
  3. You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
  4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shall you labor, and do all your work:  But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God: in it you shall not do any work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger that is within your gates:  For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.
  5. Honor your father and your mother: that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God giveth you.
  6. You shall not kill.
  7. You shall not commit adultery.
  8. You shall not steal.
  9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
  10. You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is your neighbor’s.

Commandments 1-4 are regarding our love and honor to God specifically.  Commandments 5-10 are regarding not just God, but anyone else.  I say God as well for you can steal from God and bear false witness against Him.  It is important for us to understand that these ten commandments are not rules per se.  We are commanded to love, and they are ways in which we can show our love to God and all we come into contact with.  For instance, if we steal someone’s car, we have shown them that we do not love them for we have robbed them of this car, which denies them the use of their own property.  If we commit adultery against our spouse, we have shown them we do not love them but will deeply hurt and humiliate them by sharing what was only theirs with someone else.

Going beyond the ten commandments, we can show our lack of love in ignoring people, holding grudges and gossiping against them.  If love is the focus of our lives, we will, as Paul said, think of others more highly than ourselves.

I am going to do something a bit different with this blog topic.  This week I have introduced the focus verse, which is Php 2:3.  I have also set the foundation for the next five postings, which will come once a week for the next five weeks.  Each of these weeks I will discuss a different person or group and how we can humble ourselves as we show them or love for them.  Here is the order they will be addressed.

  1. God
  2. Friends, Family and our Christian Brothers and Sisters
  3. Strangers and those in need
  4. Our Enemies
  5. The Unborn

I hope that over the next five weeks these postings will be helpful and give you a few things to think about.  I know I will have much to ponder and pray about.  And I hope you share with me your thoughts so that we can learn from each other.  You know, iron sharpening iron.

So, the next post will be on ‘In humility count God more significant than ourselves.’  I pray that God speaks to your heart over the next five weeks as He has spoken to mine during my preparation for this series.

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