Peter tells us not only that Jesus Christ is the model but what are the tools and pieces to put together so that this model is complete and working for God's glory and our security in our lives.
I remember getting a model car for a birthday present when I was about 12. It was a really neat kit with what seemed like literally thousands of tiny parts all molded onto a plastic frame with a tiny stamped number either on the part or if it was too small, right where you broke off the model part from the frame.
Instead of reading the directions and taking the time to study where each part was or where it went, I foolishly started snapping off the little pieces from the frame and piling them back into the box. I thought I would know where to glue them with no problem.
As I recall most of the little pieces never made it onto the model. I got the shell together and the doors, roof and wheels glued on and called it finished.
Why does the little book of Philippians spend so much of its content on models for life? What does this tell us about our need for models to build our lives by today?
Like the Philippian Christians and all other Christians we read about in the New Testament, we need mature Christian models to pattern our lives after. We need mentors who show us how to live this life for Christ. Besides Jesus Christ himself, who do you think is mentioned most as a model for us to follow in building a Christian life?
The Apostle Paul wins hands down. He doesn't just live the life of a Christian, he shares his Christian life with us as an example and model for us to follow. And, not only that, Paul boldly and clearly commands us to follow his example. He doesn't just suggest that we might imitate a few of the better things we see in his life.
Related Text Illustrations
Contributed by Brian Mavis on Oct 27, 2000
You share Christ by imitating Christ. A story is told – by Fredrick Beuchner I believe – called “The Happy Hypocrite." It is a story about a man who was born with an awful facial deformity. He grew up alone and lonely. When reaching adulthood, he decided to move from his town to begin a new life. ...read more
Contributed by Tim Zingale on Dec 12, 2000
Remember the opening scene: the village and you see a fiddler on the roof and Tevye says:"A fiddler on the roof. Sounds crazy, no? but in our little village of Anatevka, you might say every one of us is a fiddler on the roof, trying to scratch out a pleasant, simple tune without breaking his neck. ...read more
Contributed by Owen Bourgaize on Oct 18, 2000
Polycarp, the bishop of Smyrna was brought before the Roman authorities and told to curse Christ and he would be released. He replied, "Eighty-six years have I served him, and he has done me no wrong: how then can I blaspheme my king who saved me?" The Roman officer replied, "Unless you change ...read more
Contributed by Philip Makari on Jan 17, 2001
Here I speak of a special type of giving, the giving of our total selves first to God. It is the giving of body, soul and spirit for God’s use that we may achieve, for ourselves and for others, the higher ends of God. This is not, as you can see, charity giving. This is dedication giving. ...read more