“Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited…” (Phil. 2:5-6)
Exploitation is a dirty word because it’s ugly and heinous for one person to use another, one race to put down another, one culture to consume another, and one gender to take advantage of the other.
All exploitation is a sin because it “misses the mark” on how God wants us to live and treat each other.
All exploitation is a lie because it denies that we’re all God’s children, all equal, all precious in God’s eyes.
All exploitation is arrogant. No disciple of Jesus can justify living like our needs and wants are greater than anyone else’s.
All exploitation is blasphemous. How dare we use anyone who’s made in God’s image?
Exploiting others is dangerous because doing so often makes enemies. Exploiting others may seem to work for a while, but it often leads to disaster. The expression “how the mighty have fallen” isn’t said with sorrow but glee.
Today’s scripture proclaims that Jesus “did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited.” Jesus didn’t exploit, didn’t leverage, didn’t use, and didn’t take advantage of being God’s son against us.
Instead of exploiting any of His divine privileges, Jesus served and laid down His life for us. The way to avoid exploiting each other is to serve, help, support, walk with, and pull each other up.
When we exploit each other, Jesus grieves. If we don’t want to grieve Jesus, I encourage us to have the “same mind” He had. Jesus didn’t come to use or consume or be served. He came to help and bless and serve. May we do the same.
- Have you ever exploited another child of God? If so, how do you think that made them feel? If so, do you need to make amends?
- Have you ever been exploited by someone else? If so, how did that make you feel? Do you need to do something to regain your dignity?
- Today’s scripture implores us to have the same mind to love and serve that Jesus had. If your mind is to be like His, do some parts of your mind need to change?