The Bible is not a conglomeration of mysterious and convoluted words strung together; it’s a book filled with sentences you can read. And from those sentences and paragraphs you can learn how to live differently than you’ve lived before. You can learn how to handle those who are difficult to be around. You can learn how to endure a divorce without being eaten up with bitterness or scarred by what led to that painful decision. You can be guided and strengthened through suffering. You can be stabilized when you get the report from the MRI. The Bible will strengthen you because you have been hearing it and read it for yourself.
Archives For suffering
Continuing my series going through the book of Philippians, let’s look at Philippians 1:27-30 today.
“Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News. Don’t be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself. For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him. We are in this struggle together. You have seen my struggle in the past, and you know that I am still in the midst of it.” (Phil1:27–30, NLT) 1
Paul was a mentor to the Philippian believers and he hoped that they would not disappoint him. Phil 1:27 sets the stage for several other things Paul wanted the Philippians to do. However, Phil 1:27 is the most basic and comprehensive of all the things he was going to tell the Philippians to do:
- suffer together (Phil 1:28-30);
- focus on others (Phil 2:1-4);
- have the same attitude as Christ (Phil 2:5-11);
- shine brightly for Christ (Phil 2:12-18).
In these four verses (Phil 1:27-30) Paul is talking about suffering for Christ, and the way that you endure that suffering is by sticking together. The outcome of that sticking to together is that the good news is spread. Therefore, the one thing Paul hoped that they would do (whether he ever got to see them again) was to conduct their manner worthy of Christ
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I. TOGETHER UNITED (Phil 1:27-28)
A. Together United as Christians (v. 27)
“Conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the Gospel of Christ, in order that whether I come and see you or hear about you, stand firm in one spirit, one soul, fighting for the faith in the Gospel” (Phil 1:27)
1. Only, at all costs Continue Reading…
- Unless otherwise noted, all translations are from the New Living Translation ↩