The point of the passage is made with,
God highly exalted him, and gave unto him the name which is above every name.
- If God is exalting Jesus
- giving him the name above all others
We don't need to be Greek experts to grasp the significance of ALL the things God did to and for Jesus to realise that Jesus cannot be God. That, or the whole exalted thing is a colossal charade. We simply cannot have a Jesus who is God, but can also be tempted and die. He is either God or he is not.
This Jesus, who 'learned obedience from the things he suffered' Heb 5:8, cannot be the Great Almighty God who made all things. Who is Jesus obedient to? His Father. If Jesus is also God as many seem to think, then (as the bible says quite often) they are not remotely equal. This requires a reading-in of all kinds of humanly devised ideas not vaguely represented by the inspired text.
Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master. John 15:20
I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. John 14:28
We can dance around these plain statements or we can simply accept they are the truth and nothing but the truth. Whether Jesus says them in his fleshly, mortal, 'mastered by death' (Rom 6:9) state or his ascended, exalted, immortal state is irrelevant. He still has the same God he always had. God is still making Jesus Lord, Christ, heir, judge, immortal, giver of life. Jesus, as the man he said he was,
now you seek to kill me, a m-a-n who has spoken to you the truth that I heard from G-o-d. John 8:40
is dependant on God for a-l-l things - including being raised from the dead!
Sound theology and basic logic does not adopt a premise that a verse here or there, when read in isolation or from a poor translation, can make Jesus as God and coequal with the Father. The scripture is abundantly silent - this alleged vital truth is never stated anywhere - save a (seemingly) ambiguous passage or three like Phil 2 which proves nothing of value as isolated texts, but is merely clutching at straws to save a sinking ship.
What meaning would Philippians 2:9 have if Jesus is equal with God?
It would have the same meaning as making Jesus God anywhere in the scriptures. No sense at all.
I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God. John 20:17
We don't need to be scholars to interpret this UNambiguous verse. It too, is the truth and nothing but the truth. Should we have any reason to doubt this or add special logic and profound reasoning to have it make perfect sense? No, and neither do we when we examine Phil 2 - when we take it in context and in concert with the NT and the Apostles' consistent teaching on who Jesus was and is - at no point is he made to be God. This idea came 100's of years later. There are a parade of verses that say Jesus isn't God. Strangely, that seems very hard to accept.
How would robbery/seizure" be needed pertaining to the question of equality?
Who, existing in the form of God, did not consider to be equal with God something to be grasped, 7but emptied himself Phil 2:6
It's readily seen that Jesus always was less than God. Having a God is a good start to seeing this aspect of Jesus relationship with his Father. So in what way could Jesus seek equality? Jesus is from heaven (not literally of course) but he is not of this world. Neither were the disciples, of this world because they were his. John 17:16
God is not of this world either - that's why Jesus could say my Father has sent me, to represent Him in all things. By being of heaven Jesus has a status far removed from the sinfulness of this world, it's people and it's ruler. Jesus had every right to Lord it over the scum and sinners all around him - children of the devil he said of them! But no, Jesus had another course in mind - to choose the will of his Father and be the servant of God and man - humbling himself. This holy, sinless son of God, unto death on a cross. He chose to be equal with us rather than seek his birthright status of equality with God.
We know the parable of the son of the landowner sent to the vineyard to get the overdue rent Matt 21. The son was the equal authority of the father - he represented him in all things - not as a hired hand but as the son. But he was NOT equal with the father in all things now was he? And so neither is Jesus equal in all things with his Father (and God) as to BE God. This the scriptures does not express anywhere - but is demanded by another doctrine the Apostles did not teach.
Before we jump to faulty conclusions about ONE verse, let's be sure we are not refusing the revelation of all others. To make Jesus as God from poorly interpreting this passage, is to reject all those that oppose such an idea.
There is no need to invent a Jesus with two-natures in order to be both God and man. Why can he not simply be the man spoken of by the entire NT including by Jesus' own words?
For brevity, the matter of having the 'form of God and the servant' is explained here.