He Emptied Himself That I Might Be Full

Philippians 2:7 says: “(Jesus) made himself of no reputation.” That phrase is translated in the American Standard Version to read: “He emptied Himself”. That’s what the KJV means. The verb “kenoun” is used there and it means “to pour out”, with Christ being the object. So, what did He empty Himself of? He emptied Himself of Himself. This is what Isaiah 53:12 was meaning when Isaiah prophesied about the Messiah, that “He hath poured out his soul unto death”. The Steve Green song, “Broken And Spilled Out”, captures Isaiah’s thought. The last line of the song says, “Broken and spilled out and poured at my feet, in sweet abandon Lord, You were spilled out and used up for me.” When Jesus cried from the cross, “It is finished”, He meant that everything that needed to be done to secure our salvation had been done. He literally emptied Himself of everything He had to offer, including His own blood, for you and me that we might experience abundant life in Him. “He poured out His soul unto death” so that His resurrection life could be poured into our empty lives and we in turn, live. We serve a God who specializes in filling empty lives! If you are not experiencing God’s presence in your life, it may be because you are not empty of your own self. When someone says about someone else that he is full of himself, that’s not a compliment, no more than it is to say he is full of bologna, or full of pride or anything else. We must die to selfishness and self interests in order for there to be room for the fullness of His presence. We need to be emptied of sin today! God can’t fill a vessel that has no room to pour into. How can He fill our life if sin, or something else, already does? He can’t! We need to be emptied of sin so there is room for Him to fill us! In case you haven’t caught on yet as to how the devil works, the world offers you its best at first, until you get hooked, and then it’s all downhill from there! The best day you will ever spend in sin will be the first day, and then like I said, it’s all downhill from there! The best high you will ever have will be the first one and it will leave you searching for a better one that will never come as you are hooked in your addiction! We serve a God who specializes in filling empty things. Twice in the Gospels that we have record of, once with 5,000 men with empty stomachs plus women and children and another time with 4,000, Jesus filled all those empty stomachs with a few loaves of bread and a few fish. In both cases, after everyone had eaten until they were full, the disciples gathered up the leftovers and had more than what they started with. Both of these incidents teach us that little is much when God is in it! They also teach us that God specializes in filling empty things. I talk to many people today who tell me they are running on empty. Life today can have that effect upon us. By that I think they mean they would like for life to slow down a bit to allow them to catch their breath. You’ve probably heard me write about the shots they give me for my cancer treatments that take 90 % of my testosterone away, as well as my pep, but pep is not what I’m referring to when I speak of running on empty. Running on empty may have more to do with emotional or spiritual issues, than physical. If I wait upon the Lord, Isaiah 40:31 says, and let Him fill me when I have no pep, He will still “renew my strength”, and I can still “mount up with wings as eagles”, I can still “run and not be weary…walk and not faint”. How can I do that if I have no pep? I can because it’s not necessarily physical strength He’s talking about—it’s spiritual strength. Jesus can fill empty vessels with Himself, even old and tired and sick vessels, when those empty vessels allow Him to do so. We sing a little chorus around our church that one of the lines says, “When we’re empty, you fill us till we overflow”. Do you know yet what that little chorus is talking about? A crucifix sort of rubs me the wrong way. It’s different than a cross in that it has Jesus still hanging on it. Jesus hung on one for a few hours, that’s certainly true, but He’s not there anymore! So why have Him still hanging there? The fact that the cross is empty tells me that it is full of God’s promises for me. The empty cross tells me my sin has been paid for and that I can be forgiven of it all! Jesus tomb is also empty. Our religion is the only one on earth whose founder’s grave is empty. Empty is good unless you’re talking about an empty gas tank or an empty bank account. My hope centers on the fact that there is both an empty cross and an empty tomb. Because they are empty, my life can be filled with Jesus’ presence and all that I need to bring me salvation and abundant life in Him! Rev. Darrell Nicklow Orbisonia Church Of The Nazarene—447-3640

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