INTRODUCTION TO OUR SERIES:
Background to Philippians…
The Apostle Paul wrote the epistle (personal letter) (1:1) to the Philippian church, probably during his imprisonment in Rome. The letter was written from a heart of love and concern for the Philippians. Due to Paul’s imprisonment, he could not personally visit with the church so he sent this letter with Timothy to encourage them and bring back news of their condition to Paul. (2:19).
Some of the main divisions of the book include:
1. Introduction to the book: 1:1-2
2. Paul’s thankfulness for the Philippians: 1:3-11
3. News of Paul’s imprisonment and dedication: 1:12-26
4. Following Christ’s example is our duty: 1:27-2:18
5. Paul’s representatives and the need to treat them kindly: 2:19-30
6. Paul’s example of living a joyous life: 3:1-11
7. The Christian’s heavenly calling: 3:12-21
8. The need for Godly living: 4:1-9
9. The love offerings of the Philippians: 4:10-20
10. Closing to the book of Philippians: 4:21-23
Php 2:1-2 – “If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.”
Paul uses the blessings of Christ to encourage the Philippians believers to be united with one another…
If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies,
Paul now reminds the Philippian believers of a few of the innumerable blessings that the Lord has given to them….
1. consolation in Christ – security and peace stemming from His presence beside us during every event in our lives
2. comfort of love – encouragement that comes from a knowledge of His love, and watch care for us.
3. fellowship of the Spirit – communion with the Spirit allowing us to share in the blessings of Christ
4. bowels and mercies – the Lord’s deepest sincere longings and pity being pointed towards us.
Paul is pleading with the Philippian church members, since these wonderful blessings are graciously given to you by our Lord, it is only proper for you to….
Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.”
Bring a deep, sincere joy to Paul’s heart by sharing with their brothers Christ-like …
1. like-minded – beliefs and opinions
2. having the same love – self-sacrificial love
3. being of one accord – passions, priorities and goals
4. being… of one mind – thoughts, attitudes and reasonings
It only makes sense. If the Lord has exclusively given to His people the blessings of security and peace, encouragement, communion, His deepest sincere longings and pity; surely the Philippian brethren should enjoy a close, intimate unity with one another.
Folks, do we ever stop and think about all the blessings of God that we share with other believers and especially, the members of our church? Stop and think about all these blessings that we have in common one with another.
Yes, we do hold many things in common with all mankind around us. Many of our physical needs, our employment, our education and our community affairs are the same for both lost and saved.
However, all these blessings of God we share in common with only the people of God, which allows us to enjoy a closer level of communion with our spiritual brethren than that of the lost world.
As a matter of fact, the doctrines we believe and the goals of service that we share as members of a specific local assembly will be unique from many of the other believers that are around us. These blessings which are shared in common allow an even closer level of fellowship between ourselves and the members of the the church in which we are members.
May we all stop, recognize God’s blessings, recognize those with whom we share these blessings and strive to develop close, long-lasting relationships with them knowing that it is pleasing to God.
Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?
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