Bringing the Text to Life

Stand Against or Walk Alongside? Philippians 2:5-11

Jesus never "stood against" anyone. He always "walked alongside" everyone. He journeyed with people where they were and as they went. Over and over again, Jesus crossed the street and "came to where he was" as he crosses the streets and comes to where we are today.

During the course of his earthly ministry, Jesus was always on the move. Most rabbis and their disciples established "schools," centralized locations where others could come to them for information, debate, discourse. The great rabbis taught from a seated position, demonstrating that they were in their place, while their students crowded about them, standing at attention to hear their words.

Jesus broke with this tradition. He spent his entire career as an itinerant, wandering from place to place, refusing to set up a permanent place of residence, a "Jesus school." To be a student in the Jesus seminary meant a walk-talk pilgrimage.

Jesus went out to the lakefront to talk Simon Peter and Andrew into becoming disciples. He sat kicking his feet in the dust at the edge of a well to meet the Samaritan woman. He made a healing house call to cure Simeon's mother-in-law. He walked right in to Levi's tax booth to invite him to "follow me." He interrupted a funeral to raise up the widow of...

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