Oct. 23, 2020

What Does Philippians 2:6 Mean? Part 2

What Does Philippians 2:6 Mean? Part 2

Philippians 2:6 (ESV): Who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped

In Philippians Chapter 2, Paul has been encouraging the church in Philippi to humble themselves and remain unified. And Paul uses the most perfect example of someone who did this - Jesus.

Today we look at the phrase "did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped" and dig deeper into the original Greek language to see what Paul is saying here.

Listen now!


Hey, welcome to The Simple Truth. I’m Julie Carruth. 

Philippians chapter 2 verses 6-11 contain some of the richest text about Jesus Christ. Many say that this is one of the most important passages in the entire Bible.  

Yesterday we learned that Jesus at his very core was, is, and will always be God and nothing can change that under any circumstances.

Picking back up in verse 6 the NIV says “Who (meaning Jesus), being in very nature God,did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage.

The ESV gives us a more literal translation that might help us understand this better. It says, Jesus quote “did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped” 

So, what did Paul mean here? 

In the original Greek language, this gives the idea of someone clinging to or grabbing hold of a treasure and never letting it go. So, it’s like Paul is saying that Jesus didn’t need to grasp for or cling to equality with God. Why? Because he already possessed that treasure. From the beginning of time, Jesus was God. And yet, Jesus chose to take the form of man and not cling to his rights as God or use them for his advantage. His humble attitude, or “mind” as Paul calls it in verse 5, was one that always thought of others. 

So, your simple Truth for today: Jesus had every right to take advantage of his positional authority as God, and yet he didn’t. He came to serve rather than to be served. 

In our next episode, we’ll explore a hotly debated question of “Did Jesus become “less God” when he became a man?” It’s easy to join. Simply ask your Amazon smart speaker to “Play Bible Study.” 

I’m Julie Carruth. And I can’t wait to see you again very soon.