Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus… Php 2:3–5
I believe the key to the Christian life is found within the incarnation of Jesus Christ. Only when the divine is one with man can man even to think to achieve the abundant life that Jesus promised us.
But, this is not a means to boast, being one with the divine. But, it is a means of humility.
Jesus himself, who is one with the Father, united in substance and holiness, did not count his greatness with God has something to keep. Rather, he humbled himself in obedience.
And Paul tells us to have this same mind.
Pastors teach from these verses exhorting their people not to seek their own glory, their own welfare, above anyone else. As Christians, we are too out not only for our own welfare but also the welfare of others.
It is good that pastors teach these Scriptures, they should be taught more often. However, how pastors usually preach (I am guilty of this myself) is to preach service to those in our immediate local fellowship right along with the world that is lost.
In other words, we preach as if we are the only church in our community – we preach as if we are a monochurch.
But our own fellowship is not the only church in our own community. There are other churches, co-churches for the kingdom of God.
We teach each person represents Christ in the world. The Bible also teaches that the church represents Christ in the world too. Just as multiple individuals represent Christ, so too can multiply churches represent Christ.
Each church is to have the mind of Christ! And what is that mind? Paul tells us here in Philippians.
Do nothing from a selfish ambition. What is the ambition of your church? Do you want the largest church in the city? Do you build it at the expense of other local churches through transfer growth?
Do nothing from conceit. Do you speak ill of other pastors, other churches? Do you live within the idea your church is the only church? The only church worth serving the community? Do you use other churches and community events as a means to build your own church? Your own kingdom?
Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Let each church look not only to their own interests, but also the interests of other churches. Some would say this is impossible. You are right. But with God, all things are possible.
In order for churches to live the divine, incarnation life that Jesus Christ has called us to be, we must look to each other, serve each other, in humility and respect.