What does it mean to be human? I find Jesus’ take shocking. When I survey our culture’s opinions I see anything from a triumphalistic ‘Top of the heap’ to ‘A virus wreaking destruction’. For many Christians, people are made in the image of God, and so to be respected.
My shock came looking at the logic of Philippians 2:7, starting at the end.
… he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.
Firstly, Jesus was made in human likeness. Then going back, I read ‘the very nature of a servant …’ The implication is that the nature of a human being is to be a servant! I am shocked! We live in a culture that exalts freedom, yet our nature is to be a servant.
The fact is our nature is seen in our attitudes. We use freedom to pursue our passions, yet we become servants to whatever we exalt. If I exalt money, I become a slave to money. If I lift up family, I become a slave to family.
These false masters destroy us as we pursue them and their dream turns out bankrupt. When I pursue Jesus, He leads me down a path that fulfils. He said,
‘If you hold to my teaching you are truly my disciples, then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.’ John 8:32
Jesus’ teaching is love. When I pursue Him, He frees me to serve in love, and I discover I am loved.
A more detailed study in Philippians 2 – ‘Who are we before God?’