The path to unity is not waiting on everyone else to align themselves with you. Fight against personal selfishness and work toward humble servanthood.
2 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
The Reason to Fight Selfishness (2:1)
- “Encouragement in Christ” – You shouldn’t need the acceptance of anyone else if you are confident that you are in Christ.
- “Comfort from love” – Through the deepest suffering of this life, I am comforted by a God who maintains a mesmerizingly amount of love for me.
- “Participation in the Spirit” – Since all believers are indwelled by the same Spirit, we should not have opposing directions.
- “Affection and sympathy” – God showers us with steadfast affection and genuine sympathy to remind us He hasn’t given up on us.
- You don’t have to fight for your best interests because Christ has already died for them.
The Goal to Oppose Selfishness (2:2)
- As a church, our joy can’t be complete if we each believe it to be contingent on different things.
- Unity is not uniformity, but it is unidirectionality.
- A church will be united with one another when all are aligned with Jesus.
The Way to Stop Selfishness (2:3-4)
- If your greatest concern is your personal agenda, you are unable to experience God’s fullest will for your life.
- If you truly know yourself, humility should not be a difficult trait to pursue.
- Following Jesus means that I should live in such a way that every other person is more important than myself.
In Christ, I received what I didn’t deserve, so I should be able to give others what they don’t deserve.
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.