who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,
I think this is one of the most profound statements about Christ. He was in the form of God. He was God, the same that was in the beginning with God (John 1:1-2). Even though Christ is one and the same with God, He is still submissive to Himself the Father. Contrast that with Adam (and with you and I). We are created, in the image of God (Genesis 1:27), not the form. We are not God, and yet Adam and Eve’s first recorded act is to decide they wanted to be God. Or at least equal with Him. This verse in Philippians is a summation of Christ’s righteousness that will be imputed to us: He did not try to grasp equality with God; He did not even regard it as a thing to be grasped. We spend our whole lives attempting to find control, to create ourselves, to transcend creation. Here is a man who was God and yet laid that aside. What perfect righteousness is ours in Him!
In the thought of one who is at ease there is contempt for misfortune;
it is ready for those whose feet slip.
I think this is how I was brought up: poor people are poor because …well, because it’s their fault. And for some, that may be true. But I know that I am less forgiving and empathetic when I am resting comfortably. A large portion of our country feels this way at the moment — “those people” don’t need help because they’ll just waste it on drugs / they had their opportunity and partied instead / they already messed up their country so why give them ours / they rejected the Gospel that one time I just barely mentioned it so God must not have chosen them / they voted for an orange guy.
Yeah, it’s an ugly attitude, contempt for those whose feet have slipped.
Though he slay me, I will hope in him;
yet I will argue my ways to his face.
Incredibly faithful. LORD, make me hope in you even when you slay me.
But arguing to the face of God? A bold move, Cotton — let’s see if it pays off!
Verses 14-17 speak of the forgiveness (and resurrection) that comes through Christ!