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Read Introduction to Philippians


“But made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.”


Today we come to the third statement of our Lord’s descent from His glory as God.

“taking the form of a bondservant”

The word “form” here means inner essence. He came in His essence as a slave. He did not come as a King. He might have been born in a castle instead of a cradle. He could have come to Rome instead of Bethlehem. He could have been born of a wealthy and noble family, but this was not His strategy.

For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45)

Jesus planned to come as an abject slave (the idea of the word “servant” in the Greek). Jesus graphically portrayed this mentality when He washed the apostles’ feet in John 13.

The word “taking” indicates that He did this willingly. He was not pressed into this service. He did it of His own volition. In verse 6, He existed in the “form of God”; here, He took on the form of an abject slave. What a contrast! He laid aside the medallion of His majesty to become an abject slave.


Jesus, though He possessed the prerogatives of deity, in His humanity He held a servant mentality.


We can correct the victim mentality of our day by adopting the giving mentality of Jesus.