"If You're Smart, You'll Say What I Think You Should Say!" (Philippians 2:9-11)

When I was in high school, I was paired with an obnoxious classmate who delighted in belittling me. We had been paired once before, in the same class, when he was appointed the group leader. He relished the opportunity to be a dictator, barking out orders and assigning the most unpleasant tasks to me. His personality made me reticent to express my opinion, a trait that he eagerly pounced upon to his delight.


The teacher asked both of us if we were able to take orders from the other. He was concerned since the project may lead to sensitive and uncomfortable situations and he wanted reassurance that both of us were able to stomach the experience. My classmate glanced at me and smugly said, “If you’re smart, you’ll say what I think you should say.”


“Oh really?” I flashed him an annoyed scowl.  “I have no idea what I am supposed to say.”


He sighed and shook his head dismissively and trumpeted, “You should have said, ‘Yeah, I’m a masochist, I served under you!’ “


This self-deprecating remark was his half-hearted attempt at humor but it was too late for that. I declined the project and asked the professor to pair me with another classmate. Serving under him was simply not an option.


Through the years, I have worked with similar individuals who lead by being a dictator. They demanded my answers only met their expectations, instead of allowing me to express my opinion. They were more interested in hearing themselves talk, expecting that everyone else agree with their opinion, rather than having a productive discussion about reasonable options.


Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:9-11 (ESV)


The irony is that as much as I dislike working with individuals who channel dictators, when Jesus Christ returns to rule this world in the Millennium, He will rule as an absolute dictator! He will rule with an iron rod. Every decision will be perfect. Everyone will be blessed! I can gladly and willingly submit to Him because He is God!


There will always be leaders who are motivated by ego or selfish desires. I can chose to not follow them. But I chose Jesus Christ to be my leader. I serve Jesus Christ now. And I am smart enough to know what I should say when Jesus speaks to my heart…


I want Jesus Christ to reign over me forever!




Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.