ilThe life of Christ shows that the way up is by stepping down, that the way to gain for oneself is by giving up oneself, that the way to life is by death, and that the way to win the praise of God is by steadfastly serving others. The teaching of Jesus during his years on earth was articulated not only by the words he spoke but by the life he lived… In his humility, Jesus did what he asked others to do. And it was his great act of humility that was sung about by the church as its members met together to worship and praise him who is now exalted to the highest station in heaven. Placing the Christ-hymn precisely in this place in his letter, Paul simply wants to say, “Follow this example, pattern your life after his life.” Imitation of Christ, then, is the pattern of discipleship in Philippians.
 G. F. Hawthorne, “The Imitation of Christ: Discipleship in Philippians.” in Patterns of Discipleship in the New Testament Edited by R. N. Longenecker (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996), 169.