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St Paul in his epistle to the Philippians stressed the need for a sense of humility among the church members. As at the time paul wrote the message , great disunity existed among the church members as a result of lack of humility. Paul therefore advised them to be in harmony and not to do anything out of selfishness or conceit. They should not be self -centered. They should consider in interest of other above their own.
St paul used the case of Jesus Christ to show them what humility is all about.He said jesus christ was in the form of God but he did not count himself equal to God. He took the form of an ordinary servant and was born in the likeness of man. In the human form, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross which was considered as one of the worst forms of death.
For this reason he said:
"God has highly exalted him and given him a name which is above every name ;that at the name of jesus every knee must bow in heaven and earth, and under the earth , and every tongue must confess that Jesus Christ is Lord , to the glory of God the father (Philippian 2:9-11)".
(i) God loves the humble minded and exalts him but debases the proud
(ii) God favors the humble
(iii) God rewards the humble with riches, wisdom and long life
The synoptic writers agree that Peter and his brother, Andrew and the Two brothers, James and John the sons of Zebedee were the first four disciples to be called by Jesus. Matthew(4:18-25) and Mark(1:16-20) have the same setting for the call of disciples.
According to Matthew, Jesus was walking by the sea of Galilee. He met two brothers, Peter and Andrew. They were casting a net into the sea for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, "follow me and I will make you fishers of men". Immediately, they left their nets and followed Jesus.
A little further from where Jesus called Peter and Andrew, he met two other brothers, James and John the sons of Zebedee. They were in a boat with their father mending their nets for they were also fishermen. Jesus called them immediately, James and John left their boatyard their father and followed Jesus.
(i) It teaches Christians the right attitude to adopt towards God's call to serve him.
(ii) Christians should make quick response to God's call to be evangelists.
(iii) Christians must also respond immediately to God's call to serve the nation in any capacity.
Moral weakness of Eli's children(1sam 11 - 56). Eli's son were Hoplins and Phineas. They were worthless men. They had no regard for the Lord. The treated the offerings and sacrifices people brought for god with contempt. The practice was that when any man offered sacrifice, the priest's servants would come while the meat was boiling, with a three - ponged fork in his hand, he would thrust it into the pan or kettle or pot,all that the fork brought up, the priest would take for himself. But Eli's sons arrogantly violated that custom and the law. Furthermore, before the fat was burned, they would come and say to the men who was sacrificing "Give meat for the priest to roast, for he will not accept boiled meat but raw. And if the men said, "let them burn the fat first and then take as much as you wish. They would say, NO you must give it now; and I will take it by force. They treated the offering of the Lord with contempt. Besides these, Eli's chikdt ń lay with women who served at the entrance to the tent of meeting. They were sexually reckless.
(i) Eli did not train his children in the way of the Lord.
(ii) He failed in his parental duties.
(iii) He was careless about the things of God.
(i) It breeds evil deeds in the life of children.
(ii) It also leads to stubbornness in the life of children.
In the epistle, Christians are encouraged to give whole heatedly and bountifully. Paul, the founder of the churches in philippi and Corinth taught and instructed them about the importance of giving. Every Christian is expected to share with others. Christians are enjoined to give to the poor, the needy, the widows and orphans, whole heatedly and bountifully. For God loves a cheerful giver. Ministers of the word of God should be helped materially, Paul says it is their right. Christians should therefore share what they have with the needy among them. This means giving to a Christian is a continuous affair. Paul wants the Christians in Corinth To Help the needy in their midst. Their gifts should be liberal and deliberate.
(i) Christians will be rewarded in multitude.
(ii) God will increase them.
(iii) Christians will never lack any good thing.