DO and DO NOT – Book of Philippians 2:3

Today we are continuing to look at my list of “Do and Do Not” in the Book of Philippians Chapter Two, trying to find out how God expects us to conduct ourselves during this life on earth.

I believe that the Book of Philippians is a God inspired guideline for our walk and being in this world. And just as a reminder, the Book of Philippians is not the only book in the Bible to give advice for life. We have to take the whole of Scripture into consideration and it’s important to keep all of it in context.

So, here we go:

Philippians 2:3 (NKJV)
Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.

Let’s unpack the “Do” and “Do Not”.

Do not be selfish!
Take the example of Jesus Christ; if He had been selfish we would not have the gift of eternal life and would all go to the lake of fire.

Do not try to impress others that would be you taking the glory instead of giving the glory to God.

I know and understand that it feels good to see others being impressed with our achievements in life. I beam too when someone tells me that I did a great job or only I could have done it. But, ask yourself the questions:

“Why am I able to outperform others?”
“Where did I get the strength from?”

God is the answer! He gave us the abilities and the strength we needed to do the job; and He prepared us to be successful. He opens and closes doors. Be thankful and give glory to Him! Do anything as if unto the Lord.

To give some extra explanation to Philippians 2:3, I would like to quote William MacDonald who published The Believer’s Bible Commentary:

Nothing whatever should be done through selfish ambition or conceit, since these are two of the greatest enemies of unity among the people of God. Selfish ambition is the desire to be number one, no matter what the cost. Conceit speaks of pride or self-display. Wherever you find people who are interested in gathering a clique around themselves or in promoting their own interests, there you will find the seeds of contention and strife. The remedy is found in the latter part of the verse. In lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. This does not mean that we must consider criminals as having better moral characters than our own, but rather that we should live for others unselfishly, putting their interests above our own. It is easy to read an exhortation like this in the word of God, but quite another thing to appreciate what it really means, and then put it into actual practice. To esteem others better than ourselves is utterly foreign to the human mind, and we cannot do it in our own strength. It is only as we are indwelt and empowered by the Holy Spirit that it can ever be practiced.

I think we can sum it up into this: “do not be selfish but be humble at heart.”

Philippians 1:9-11 (NKJV)
And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

I hope this post is an encouragement to you in your walk with the Lord.


What are your thoughts on Philippians 2:3?
Do you struggle with selfish ambition and trying to impress?
Please feel free to leave me a comment; I would like to hear from you.


To God be the Glory!


Next week we will continue in Philippians 2:4.

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