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Philippians 3:1 “Caring For Our Spiritual Family Members”

 

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

 

Php 3:1 – “Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Paul now begins the remaining part of his teaching to the church at Philippi…

Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord.

 

“Finally” (the remaining portion), my spiritual relatives, find calmness and happiness in the Lord.

What a very important teaching for us all… to be content in Christ alone. In other words, all Christians have a great need to find joy in Christ, no matter what the circumstance or condition in which they may find themselves.

Php 4:11 – “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.”

 

To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe.”

 

Teaching the need for Christ-based contentment affects both the teacher and the students.

It affects the teacher, in this case Paul, because it shows he is not being lazy nor is he lacking in his teachings to the people. It proves his love for them, the proactive nature of much of his teaching, and his diligence is caring for the saints of Philippi.

It affects the students who hear this teaching, by giving to them instruction that does not fail to provide for their security. When we learn to be calm and happy in the Lord during great trials of our faith, we find peace in the midst of the storm and joy in the midst of sorrow. We are like a ship that is securely docked to the harbor of Christ as the storm rages. Without this contentment in our lives we are more like ships being tossed to and fro with fear and sorrow ruling the day.

This principle was displayed by Christ as He drew his disciples attention to Himself, and in doing so, gave them peace in the midst of the storm (Matt 14:22-32).

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

The need to find calmness and happiness in the Lord no matter what our lives may hold for us is one of the great keys to successful Christian service. It opens the doorway to encouragement in the midst of discouraging times, joy in the midst of the sorrows of life, and peace when the storm rages.

May we all keep our eyes upon Christ, and Christ alone, and draw from His presence peace and joy as we enter each new day. May we seek to be consistent servants no matter what the day may hold for us.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:28-30: “Caring For Our Spiritual Family Members”

 

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

 

Php 2:28-30 – “I sent him therefore the more carefully, that, when ye see him again, ye may rejoice, and that I may be the less sorrowful. Receive him therefore in the Lord with all gladness; and hold such in reputation: Because for the work of Christ he was nigh unto death, not regarding his life, to supply your lack of service toward me.”

 

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

 

I sent him therefore the more carefully, that, when ye see him again, ye may rejoice, and that I may be the less sorrowful.

 

Paul would take great care to hasten Epaphroditus’ departure for Philippi knowing that it would be an joyous encouragement to the people, which would result in Paul’s encouragement as well.

 

 

 

Receive him therefore in the Lord with all gladness; and hold such in reputation:

Because of Paul’s great care in sending Epaphroditus to them, the Philippians were to treat him as a brother in Christ, receiving him with genuine delight. Based on his reputation, they were to hold him up as an honorable servant of Christ and the Apostle Paul

 

 

 

Because for the work of Christ he was nigh unto death, not regarding his life, to supply your lack of service toward me.

 

Epaphroditus had proven himself as a faithful servant of the Lord. In the course of his service to Christ, he willingly risked his life. He did all of this simply because, in the Philippian’s absence, he was to stand in for them, working to meet the needs of Paul.

 

 

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Folks, Epaphroditus willingly risked his life to do the work of the Lord. How many of us can say the same thing? May we all ask the Lord for grace and enabling to choose Him over our own life when necessary.

For some of us, our spirit is willing to die for Christ, when necessary. But because of the blessings of God upon our nation, the opportunity to die for Christ is very limited here. Not so, in many foreign lands. In some countries EVERYDAY Christian’s willingly place their lives on the line in an effort to serve their King, the Lord Jesus. May we be in daily prayer for those who face death every day in an effort to serve Jesus.

We have much to be thankful for, living as citizens in a country where Christ, for the most part, is allowed to be worshipped without persecution. However, things are changing. May we always be thankful for the grace the Lord has shown to us and be in prayer for our country that we might continue to serve the Lord without fear of losing our lives in His name.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:25-27: “Caring For Our Spiritual Family Members”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

 

Php 2:25-27 – “Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants. For he longed after you all, and was full of heaviness, because that ye had heard that he had been sick. For indeed he was sick nigh unto death: but God had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow.”

 

 

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus,

Along with Timothy, Paul would be sending to the Philippians a man named Epaphroditus.

The name Epaphroditus means to be devoted to the goddess Aphrodite (Venus).

If this was his given name, it helps us to understand much about Epaphroditus. Apparently his parents were devoted followers of the goddess Aphrodite and desired their son to follow her as well. Therefore, in honor of this false goddess, they gave their son the name “Devoted to Aphrodite”.

If Epaphroditus was a “nick name” given to him by his friends later in his life, then this tells us that in his younger days Epaphroditus was probably a devoted follower of Aphrodite who was later converted to Christ.

 

my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants.

 

Epaphroditus fulfilled many roles in his service for Christ. He is described as:

1. my brother – member of the same spiritual family as Paul

2. companion in labour – he shared in Paul’s labors for Christ

3. fellowsoldier – he was an associate in spiritual warfare with Paul

4. your messenger – one sent from Philippi with a message for Paul

5. he that ministered to my wants. – He served Paul by helping to supply that which he lacked.

 

Why would Paul send Epaphroditus with Timothy?

 

 

For he longed after you all, and was full of heaviness, because that ye had heard that he had been sick. For indeed he was sick nigh unto death: but God had mercy on him;

 

Epaphroditus had fallen ill while with Paul. He had a likelihood that he would die. However, the Lord graciously delivered Epaphroditus from death and restored him to health. In doing so He was showing him mercy, because he did not deserve to rescued from his impending death.

The church at Philippi, Epaphroditus’ home church, heard of his illness and was worried about him. Because of the church’s great concern for Epaphroditus, he began to worry about them and the sorrow his sickness was causing them.

Paul wanted to send Epaphroditus back to the church at Philippi, to comfort both the church and Epaphroditus.

 

 

 

and not on him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow.

When the Lord healed Epaphroditus, he was not only showing his mercy to him but also to Paul. Epahroditus had been a wonderful blessing and help to Paul. If he would have died, Paul would have had his burdens and sorrow greatly increased.

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

In this text, we can see several examples of Christians appreciating and caring for the feelings of their spiritual brothers and sisters.

1. We can see that Paul appreciated Epaphroditus as he recounts the roll that he had in Paul’s life.

2. We can see Epaphroditus’ love for the church at Philippi as he longed for them and was full of heaviness for them.

3. We can see the church’s care for Epaphroditus during his time of illness

4. We can see Epaphroditus’ care for Paul as he labored to meet his needs

5. We can see Paul’s concern for the church at Philippi as he sees his need to send Epaphroditus to them

WOW what a wonderful text that helps us to see the great need to always be empathetic towards our spiritual family members and seek to help them in their times of sorrow, concern and trials in any way we can.

May we all live according to the instructions Paul had previously given to the church in Philippians 2:1-4…

Philippians 2:1-4 – “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. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.”

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:22-24: “Helping Others Through Friends”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

 

Php 2:22-24 – “But ye know the proof of him, that, as a son with the father, he hath served with me in the gospel. Him therefore I hope to send presently, so soon as I shall see how it will go with me. But I trust in the Lord that I also myself shall come shortly.”

 

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Paul now promises the Philippian believers that he will send Timothy to them soon…

 

 

But ye know the proof of him, that, as a son with the father, he hath served with me in the gospel.

 

The Philippians were familiar with Timothy and his life that has been proved to be faithful to the Lord. He had worked for Paul in spreading the gospel, much like a son would labor to meet the needs of his father. This would include loving Paul, respecting Paul, protecting Paul, and learning from Paul much like in a son’s relationship with his father.

 

 

Him therefore I hope to send presently, so soon as I shall see how it will go with me.

 

Paul hoped to send Timothy very quickly, just as soon as Paul knew his fate. This would help Paul to understand what his short-term needs for Timothy might be. As soon as Timothy was no longer an absolute necessity for Paul, he would be sending Timothy to them.

 

 

But I trust in the Lord that I also myself shall come shortly.

Paul’s hope was to also visit with the Philippians very soon. Again, this would also be based upon what Paul’s future would hold.

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Paul’s sending of Timothy to the Philippians is a good example of self-sacrifice for the good of others. Paul was willing to temporarily give up his “right hand man” for the sake of the believers at Philippi.

But also, we can learn a very important lesson about using other Christians to help those whom we cannot help. The Philippians needed to be encouraged and strengthened following them hearing of Paul’s imprisonment. Although Paul could not visit them and personally encourage them, he would be sending Timothy to fulfill that task.

There are times when we cannot help others who we see in need, whether due to a lack of opportunity, lack of talent talent, lack of experience or other reason. In those cases, we are to look for other Christians who will be more able to meet the need.

Likewise there are times, as Christians, when we are approached by another Christian about their inability to meet a need of another, we are to be willing to step in for them and seek to meet the need at hand.

Do we see those with needs around us? If so, are we willing and able to meet that need? If we are unable are we seeking others who can stand in our place to meet the need?

Has a Christian brother or sister asked us to step up and meet another’s needs? If so, are we willing to do so, even if the one in need is a total stranger to us?

May we all be used of the Lord in great ways to meet the needs of others and seek out help for those whom cannot help ourselves.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:19-21: “Naturally Caring For Others”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:19-21 – “But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also may be of good comfort, when I know your state. For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state. For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Paul voices his concern for the believers at Philippi. Because of his concern, Paul sent Timothy to them to deliver this letter, encourage them, and find out how they are doing….

 

 

But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you,

Paul was trusting the Lord to watch over Timothy and give him a safe arrival at Philippi.

 

 

that I also may be of good comfort, when I know your state.

 

Timothy’s return to Paul, with a good report of the Philippian’s condition, would encourage Paul and put him in good spirits.

 

 

For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state.

Paul knew he was the only one with the same care and concern for his Philippian brothers and sisters in Christ. It was only a natural set of feelings for Paul to have for them. After all, he was instrumental in their salvation, the founding of their local church, and the situation they faced there.

There was no one else who played this same role in the lives of the Philippian believers. He is ending them Timothy because he is the only one currently with Paul who shares in some of Paul’s concern for the Philippian believers.

 

 

For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s.

 

The prevailing attitude among Christians was an attitude of selfishness, possessing an attitude of care for their own self only. They did not have a servant’s heart towards Christ and others. They did not have a concern for the wellbeing of others, nor did they want to help others to serve Christ in greater ways.

 

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Stop and think about it. The heart of a Christian should be to place the Lord and others before self. Christ gave Himself for us. It should be only a “natural” thing to give of ourselves in return. We all were lost but now we are found. It should only be “natural” we want to give of ourselves for others so they can see Christ in us and come to a saving knowledge of Him as well.

Sadly the “norm” among Christians today, as in Paul’s day, is to possess a selfish attitude centering on our own needs, wants, and desires. This stands in stark opposition to the “natural” attitude for the Christian should be to possess a humble spirit placing the Lord and others above ourselves.

What personal sacrifices have made for Christ and others? This will help us to understand what is in our heart…

Do we have “naturally” a heart like Paul and Timothy or are we the “norm” among Christians?

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Do We Rejoice When We Sacrifice For The Cause Of Christ?

SIH HALTAL ICONPhp 2:17-18 – “Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all. For the same cause also do ye joy, and rejoice with me.”

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-4s1

Philippians 2:17-18: “Rejoice… You Are Called To Be A Sacrifice For Christ”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:17-18 – “Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all. For the same cause also do ye joy, and rejoice with me.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith,

 

Here we find that Paul was willing to give his life for the sake of the salvation of those at Philippi. Paul is picturing the giving of his entire being (his body, wellbeing and physical life) by the pouring out of a drink offering. Just like a cup is emptied as the drink offering is poured out, so too Paul was willing to be emptied of all his physical strength, health, and even physical life, to see the Philippians come to a saving faith in Christ.

Paul is saying that he was called upon, and willing to, give his all in his service for Christ.

 

I joy, and rejoice with you all.

Not only was Paul willing to give his all during the course of service to Christ, but he actually counted it his joy, which would be shared by those who came to faith in Christ at Philippi.

“I joy” refers to Paul being joyous because he was given the opportunity to sacrificially give of himself for Christ.

“rejoice with you all” refers to Paul being joyous for the Philippians who had come to faith in Christ and were not eternally secure in Him.

 

 

 

For the same cause also do ye joy, and rejoice with me.”

Paul knew the Philippians shared in this reciprocal joy with Paul.

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Folks, are we willing to give our all for Christ?

Above that, are we thankful and joyous for the opportunity to empty ourselves for Him?

What a blessing and privilege for us to be able to give of ourselves for the cause of Christ, knowing our service will reap eternal rewards for us and make an eternal difference in the lives of those around us!

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:14-16: “Shine As Lights In the World”

 

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:14-16 – “Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Paul now instructs the Philippians on how to have testimonies that will shine brightly in the midst of a fallen world….

Do all things without murmurings and disputings:

The Philippian believers were to do all things without complaining or arguing. These had to do with their willingness to be submissive to the authorities over them. They were to willingly submit to the will of their family leaders; church; government; masters; and, most importantly, their Lord.

 

 

 

That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; Holding forth the word of life;

 

 

This testimony of submission to higher authorities would result in them being seen as:

1. be blameless and harmless – unable to be accused and innocent

2. the sons of God – members of the family of God

3. without rebuke – without fault

4. among whom ye shine as lights in the world; – lights that shine brightly revealing Christ and His Word

This wonderful light-filled testimony would take place “in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation” in other words, in the midst of a twisted, corrupted world.

 

 

that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.”

The shining testimony of the Philippian believers would bring rejoicing to Paul’s when he stood before the Lord to give answer for his ministry. Their faithfulness would be proof that Paul’s service on their behalf was not worthless.

Paul pictures his service to Christ as a race and as working at a job. Both have an end goal, both take much effort and both are done according to guidelines that were given. So too, our service to the Lord. The Lord gives us specific opportunities to share Him with others, according to guidelines He has given to us, which will take effort on our part and enabling on His part.

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

When we have are in submission to those who are placed over us, we find ourselves shining brightly, revealing Christ to others around us. One of the hallmarks of Christ’s ministry on the earth was His submission to His Father and the other authorities over Him. When we willfully submit to our authorities, we are placing before others a wonderful example of the submissive spirit of Christ.

May we all strive to live in submission to the authorities around us as we seek to show Christ to a lost and dying world.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:12-13: “God Hath Highly Exalted Christ”

 

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:12-13 – “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Wherefore, my beloved,

Before Paul gives the Philippian believers practical instruction, he reminds them of his great love for them. He was writing to them out of a heart of concern and care wanting only to help them and encourage then in the Lord. He was not instructing them out of a critical, fault-finding spirit, nor did he teach these things for his own personal gain.

 

 

as ye have always obeyed,

 

First, Paul commends them for their consistent service for Christ. He describes their service as “always obey(ing)” Christ. In other words, they served the Lord at every opportunity, without regard to the individual opposition or circumstance they may face.

The Greek word for “obeyed” is a very interesting word. It combines the ideas of listening, following and submitting. They obeyed the Lord consistently by SUBMITTING to His authority in their life which was shown by them LISTENING to His teachings and FOLLOWING His instructions and example.

 

 

not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence,

Paul also commends them for not hypocritically serving the Lord, just for appearance sake. Paul recognized they did not serve the lord only when Paul was present to receive his praise. On the contrary, Paul saw that they continued faithful in service even when he was not there to see them, encourage them, and praise them.

 

 

work out your own salvation

Paul is not telling the believers to work faithfully in an effort to gain, or retain their salvation. Paul is clear in many, many other places of Scripture that the initial salvation experience, the retention of that salvation, and the completion of that salvation are all entirely of God’s grace apart from the works of man.

“work out” – in other words, work to completion, do not stop before the task is accomplished

“your own salvation” – the change that has taken place in your life through the graces you have been given.

In other words, Paul instructs the Philippians to serve the Lord faithfully until each task is complete. They are to do this by exercising the graces given to them, as ones who are saved from their sins. This would include spiritual fruits, Holy Spirit empowering, etc etc. In that sense, they are to “work out”
their “own salvation”… ie “actively use the graces related to your salvation experience to bring the task at hand to completion”

This principle is brought out in Rom 6:18-22:

 

“Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness.

For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness. What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.”

 

 

with fear and trembling.

Two of the great motives that are to drive the believer to faithfully complete each task presented to them is “fear” and “trembling”…

1. “fear” – alarm, fright, dread. The Greek word for fear is the word “phobos” from which we get our word “phobia”

2. “trembling” – to shake, to quiver from fear.

 

The above words, when taken together, CANNOT simply mean to reverence the Lord. The basic meaning of “phobos” along with the idea of shaking in fright, clearly presents fear and dread as a motive in our faithful service to the Lord.

In what way are Christians to be in dread of the Lord? Are they to fear a loss of salvation or eternal condemnation? Of course not, the Bible makes it plain that the Lord will always bring to completion the work of salvation that He has begun in the heart of the believer…

Php 1:6 – “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:”

Rom 8:29-30 – “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.”

 

If this is true, then in what way are Christians to fear their Lord? They are to fear, or dread, His chastening hand upon those who are willfully disobedient to Him. From experience the Christian knows that the chastening of the Lord can be very stern and painful, meted out in an effort to bring the rebellious Christian back to a close walk with Christ.

Christian’s are to be much like a child who fears the chastening hand of his father, though the child knows he is loved and will always be a part of the family. So too, Christians are to fear the results of the chastening hand of God, while still confident in His love, adoption, and eternal security. After all, God’s chastening hand, although harsh, is meted out from a heart of love, for the believer’s good.

 

Heb 12:5-11

“And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.

Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.

Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.”

 

 

 

 

 

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.”

The Philippian believers were to keep in mind that all of their labors for Him were, in actuality, the Lord working within them. In other words, the believer’s exercise of spiritual gifts as they served the Lord was actually an act of the Lord enabling and empowering them in their walk with Him.

This is why they should not faint. This is why they should not quit in the midst of hardships. The Lord was working in them enabling them to complete the task that has been placed before them.

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

What is a Christian to do? Based upon these instructions by Paul, we are to faithfully serve the Lord and bring our tasks to completion, without hypocrisy. We are to serve Him out of a recognition of His chastening hand and his gracious enabling in our lives.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:9-11: “God Hath Highly Exalted Christ”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:9-11 – “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

 

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:

Because of the humility, obedience and service of Christ towards His Father and others, God has placed Him in the highest possible position of authority. This took place at His ascension when Christ was seated at the right hand of God (Mark 16:19, Acts 2:32-36).

Christ’s accomplishments while on the earth would bring about the highest possible level of reverence for His name. His name Jesus, Jehovah is our Savior, is now placed above every other name on earth. Through His humility, obedience, and service (which led to His sacrificial death on the cross) Christ became the Savior of all mankind.

 

That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;

 

The recognition and reverence of Christ’s name results in complete universal worship. Beginning at Armageddon and continuing throughout eternity, Christ will be universally worshipped by human beings throughout God’s creation. The saved in heaven, whose living on the earth during Armageddon, and the lost in the Lake of Fire, will all bring honor and glory to Christ and Him alone.

 

 

 

And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Not only will the name of Christ be honored above all others, but the Lordship of Jesus will be proclaimed by every tongue. This will not only bring praise to Christ but also to His Father who has rightfully exalted Him. The exaltation was deserved by Christ due to His obedience and sacrifice for the Father… the exaltation of Christ not only reveals the greatness of Christ, but it also cries out of the perfect justice of the Father.

 

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

At least two great blessings can be had by us from these verses…

First of all, we are reminded of the greatness of the Lord that we serve. He is the One that is exalted above all others, He is the One whose name is held in reverence above all names; He is the One who is in control of all things in heaven, in earth, and under the earth. He is truly King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Secondly, in this text we can easily see the greatness of the sacrifice that our Lord has made on behalf of His people. His sacrifice was so great that He deserved to be exalted above all, worshipped throughout all eternity. His sacrifice was so powerful His name will forever be held in the highest of esteem.

Wow, stop and think about it. We have the privilege of serving the Lord of this universe. This privilege comes to us through His sacrifice which he worked on our behalf. May we praise and honor Him throughout our lifetimes for what He has done for us and in recognition of His exalted position as lord and Savior of man.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:5-8: “The Mind Of Christ”

 

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:5-8 – “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Paul now encourages the Philippian believers to share in Christ’s attitude of humility and servanthood…

 

 

Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

Christ was in the “form of God”. This does not mean Christ had the physical appearance of God. It is speaking more of Christ displaying God to man through His wisdom, grace, miracles, life, death, resurrection and glorification etc. Christ was constantly showing God to man through the many events of His life on earth.

However, Christ was not simply a man who displayed God throughout His lifetime on earth… He was also God Himself, coming to earth as a man. This is why, although Christ was on the earth as a man, He still did no injustice by claiming to be God Himself.

 

 

But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:

Although Christ was God Himself, He willingly humbled Himself. The humility of Christ is clearly shown to us as He:

1. “made himself of no reputation” – Christ, who retained His divinity while on earth, “emptied” himself of all His divine trappings and choose to not take His rightful place as Sovereign God over all. He did not come to the earth as Sovereign God but came as a baby born in a manger, who lived a simple life of servanthood on earth.

2. “took upon him the form of a servant” – Christ, who is King of Kings and Lord of Lords, choose to not exercise His ruling authority, but lived the life of a servant living to meeting the needs of others around Him.

Just like being in “the form of God” (vs 6) involved displaying God to man in His works, and lifestyle; so too, being in “the form of a servant” involved displaying His attitude of servanthood in all that He did. Everything Christ did during His life, was an act of servanthood to God and man. His life was filled with works that fulfilled His Father’s commands and met the needs of all mankind.

3. “and was made in the likeness of men” – Christ, as His first coming to the earth, appeared as a man, although He was God. His physical appearance was that of a man. His needs for sleep, food, oxygen etc was that of a man. When others saw Him both in appearance and lifestyle, they simply saw a man.

 

And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

Christ, who was God Himself, came to the earth in human form, living a life of humility and service. The greatest proof of these principles is found in the death of Christ:

1. Proof of Christ’s humanity – God cannot die, for Christ to be able to die on the cross He had to come as a man. When Christ died on the cross it was His human life that departed from Him, His Godly nature exists eternally with no end, unable to be touched by death.

2. Proof of Christ’s humble obedience – Christ’s death was an act of obedient service to His Father. His death was also an act of humility, love, grace and mercy as He made the ultimate sacrifice on the cross to meet all their spiritual needs. His people did not deserve for Him to die, on the contrary, they only deserved to be eternally punished for their sins. And yet, in spite of this, He gave His life for them. This is true humility… giving of ourselves to those who do not deserve our kindness.

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Christ’s humility and servanthood were on display consistently in every area of His life. Everything that He did was in submission to His Father’s will and for the benefit of His people. This is the attitude we are to share with Christ.

It is an attitude of desire to follow the will of our Lord, and in doing so, meeting the needs of those around us. This is why humility and servanthood go hand in hand. A humble spirit engenders acts of servanthood towards God and man. May we all share in this most wonderful attitude!

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:3-4: “Esteem Others Better Than Ourselves”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 2:3-4 – “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Paul continues to help us understand proper motivations we should possess as we cultivate Godly relationships with other Christians…

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory;

Godly relationships cannot be motivated with desires for:

1. strife – conflict, confusion and disorder

2. vain-glory – worthless praise

Neither of these motivations should hold any place in the lives of Christians. When these motivations are present they are to be replaced with humility…

 

 

 

but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

 

We are to, with a humble mind, we are to see others as more valuable than ourselves. This attitude will cause us to put the welfare of others first and to be willing to make personal sacrifices for them.

 

 

 

Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.”

When we see others as better than ourselves, we will begin looking out for their welfare and seek to meet their needs. We will no longer be self-centered and discouraged due to our own personal wants but our attention will be centered upon Christ and working to help others along life’s way.

The Lord’s mandate to “look …. on the things of others” does not give us the liberty to judge others in an ungodly way, become tattlers of their affairs, or noisy interferers. Please keep in mind, when we have a truly humbled heart pointed towards the welfare of others, the mistreatment of others will not be an option for us.

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

1Jn 3:14 – “We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.”

Rom 15:1 – “We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.”

 

When we develop a selfless attitude towards the people of God, we are showing ourselves to be genuinely saved and spiritually strong. What a wonderful testimony to have before the lost around us. When they see us enjoying Godly relationships, willing to make sacrifices for others, they are seeing the love of Christ at work in us.

May we all continue to come to a better understanding and application of the Lord’s word given to us through the Apostle Paul which will allow us to develop more Godly relationships with our brothers and sisters in Christ and be living testimonies of the love of Christ in the eyes of those who are lost.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 2:1-2: “Love & Unity”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

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.”

 

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

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.

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

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?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

Philippians 1:21-24: “For Me To Live Is Christ”

 

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

 

 

TODAY’S TEXT:

 

Php 1:21-24 KJV – “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not. For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.”

 

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

Paul recognizes that he will be delivered from prison by release or his physical death (vs 19-20). He now stops and considers which type of deliverance would be more preferable for himself and others …

For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

If Paul was released from prison, it would open up continuing opportunities for Christ to be glorified and served with his life. However, if Paul’s deliverance came about due to his death, he would be home with His Lord. His death would result in a better end for himself, but would be a loss for those around him.

 

But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not.

If Paul continues to live physically (“in the flesh”) he will reap eternal blessings as he continues to faithfully serve his Lord. In either situation, Paul will benefit. If he dies, he goes home to the Lord; if he lives, he will gain more eternal rewards for his service.

In spite of all this analysis of his death and life, and who gains and who might lose through it all, Paul affirms that all he wants is the will of God done with his life. It really it doesn’t matter what Paul wants… it is all about what His Lord wants.

 

 

For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.

Paul was in a very tight place caught between two options for his future. He was torn between his desires (death to be with his Lord) and what is good for others (release from prison to continue to spread the gospel of Christ.)

What was his conclusion to all of this? Lord, your will be done!

 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:

Folks, how often in life do we face events that are out of our control, that will either fulfill our desires, or that will bring about what is best for others? For what are we to pray?

Paul helps us to understand that, when we are confronted with events that are not in our control, we are to simply submit to the Lord’s intervention and seek to be submissive to whatever the Lord has for us.

May we all be in submissive to the will of our Lord for our lives and follow his example as we pray about the upcoming events in our lives….

Luk 22:42 KJV – “Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.”

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions?

Email me at: rob.barkman@settledinheaven.org

Homepage…  http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog…  http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog… http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

To Love As Jesus Loved: “Charity Endureth All Things”

SIH TOTT ICON“And though I bestow all my goods to feed [the poor], and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

Charity suffereth long, [and] is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Charity never faileth: but whether [there be] prophecies, they shall fail; whether [there be] tongues, they shall cease; whether [there be] knowledge, it shall vanish away…  

And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these [is] charity.

(1 Corinthians 13:3-8, 13)

The Lord’s great love moved Him to willingly accept horrible false accusations, abuse and even death.

 

Christ’s Life:

 

The Characteristic of Scriptural Love: Perseveres Under A Heavy Burden

What great patience and perseverance is shown by our Lord as He withstood this abuse. Especially when we keep in mind that, at any time, He could have called legions of angels to come and rescue Him from this great burden of abuse that was placed upon Him…

Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?

In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.

But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled. (Matthew 26:52-56)

 

What was the motivating force behind Christ’s willingness to suffer long under this mistreatment? It was His love for His Heavenly Father and the people that His Father had given to Him:

 

1. His love for His Father – Christ was driven to fulfill His Father’s will for His life which included facing this horrible abuse.

But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.(John 14:31)

Christ declared His love for His Father through His obedience to His Father’s will.

But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of [things] in heaven, and [things] in earth, and [things] under the earth;And [that] every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ [is] Lord, to the glory of God the Father.(Philippians 2:7-11)

Christ’s submission to abuse and death did it as an act of obedience to the Father. This same faithful obedience resulted in His exaltation as Lord over all.

 

Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;(Hebrews 5:7-9)

It was through His sufferings that Christ learned of obedience. Likewise, it was through His suffering that He became the Savior of His people.

In Isaiah 53:1-12, we find a prophetic compilation of the many types of suffering that was borne by Christ as an act of love and obedience to His Father.

 

 

2. His love for the people given to Him by the Father – Christ’s great love for His people drove Him to willingly bear the horrible abuse, and in doing so, paid the price for their sins.

And from Jesus Christ, [who is] the faithful witness, [and] the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him [be] glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.(Revelation 1:5-6)

 

 

Our Lesson To Be Learned:

May we be willing to give of ourselves for our Lord and those around us, motivated by the love of Christ in our hearts…

“Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.” (Ephesians 5:1-2)

That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,May be able to comprehend with all saints what [is] the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.(Ephesians 3:16-19)

To Love As Jesus Loved: “Charity Is Not Puffed Up”

SIH TOTT ICON

And though I bestow all my goods to feed [the poor], and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

Charity suffereth long, [and] is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Charity never faileth: but whether [there be] prophecies, they shall fail; whether [there be] tongues, they shall cease; whether [there be] knowledge, it shall vanish away…  

And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these [is] charity.

(1 Corinthians 13:3-8, 13)

 

As we continue looking at events in the life of Christ that set a wonderful example for us of Scriptural love. In this devotional, we will see Christ’s willingness to unhesitatingly, humbly, submit to others as He stoops low to meet their needs…

 

 

 

Christ’s Life:

 

The Characteristic of Scriptural Love: Is Not Puffed Up (Is Not Proud)

From Christ’s entrance into the world until His exaltation following His ascension, we see Christ (God Himself) ministering to others in the midst of abuse and mistreatment.

 

Christ’s humility was shown to us in many, many ways as He ministered to fallen mankind…

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.

All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
In him was life; and the life was the light of men…
He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
He came unto his own, and his own received him not…
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
(John 1:1-4, 10-11, 14)

 

Christ, the eternal God and Creator of all things, was the source of all physical and spiritual life. It is this same Creator God who humbly came to the earth as a Man to give the world the light of the revelation of His Father. In spite of all He did for fallen mankind, they did not recognize, nor kindly receive Him.   Yet, He remained faithful to His people and finished His work on our behalf…

[Let] nothing [be done] through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.(Philippians 2:3-8)

This is true humility motivated by love… love for His Father and love for those to whom He came.

 

Christ summarized this aspect of His ministry as recounted by Matthew…

But Jesus called them [unto him], and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:

Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

(Matthew 20:25-28)

 

Our Lesson To Be Learned:

 

Christ set the example for us of ministering to others instead of living a life of  of pride, arrogance and rulership over others. During one of the most shocking displays of His humility, He taught all of His followers the need to, with no hesitation, place no limits on our service to others…

 

So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you?

Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for [so] I am.If I then, [your] Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.
For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.(John 13:12-17)

 

Are we willing to serve in ANY WAY to which we are called? Are we willing to stoop low to meet the needs of those who do not merit our aid? This is a genuine mark of our Lord for our Lord and for those around us.

 

 

SIH Homepage: http://www.settledinheaven.org
SIH Text Blog: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/
SIH Video Blog: http://youtube.com/settledinheaven/
SIH Email: settledinheaven@gmail.com

Finding God’s Will For Our Lives Part # 4

SIH STSTA ICON“Oh what a feeling…”

Prov 3:6 – “In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

 

In this short 12 word verse, we find one of the most precious promises of the Bible… the promise for the Lord’s leadership and guidance in our lives.   But in this same verse, we find one of the most difficult aspects of the Christians life… following the path the Lord desires for our life.

One of the most frequently asked questions is “How can I find God’s will for my life?”   In the next 6 blog entries we will be seeing what God’s word teaches us about this important subject…

  1. What is God’s will ?
  2. Not my will, but thine be done.
  3. Thus saith the Lord
  4. Oh what a feeling
  5. Open and shut doors
  6. Summary of the study

In part number 4 of our study lets study… “Oh what a feeling…”

THE SCRIPTURE:

Acts 17:10-11 (KJV)

And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming [thither] went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

 

Rom 12:1-3 (KJV)

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think [of himself] more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Phil 1:9-11 (KJV)

And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and [in] all judgment;That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ;Being filled with the fruits

of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.

Phil 2:12-13 (KJV)

Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure.

Eph 5:6-13 (KJV)

Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.Be not ye therefore partakers with them.For ye were sometimes darkness, but now [are ye] light in the Lord: walk as children of light:(For the fruit of the Spirit [is] in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [them].For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.

1Thess 5:16-22 (KJV)

Rejoice evermore.Pray without ceasing.In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.Quench not the Spirit.Despise not prophesyings.Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.Abstain from all appearance of evil.

THE STUDY:

In our search for God’s will, many times we find ourselves relying on our ”feelings” to help us determine His desires for our lives.  For example, a lack of a guilty conscience can be interpreted as the Lord’s approval for a certain action.  Likewise, a feeling of excitement, or certainty, can be interpreted as the Lord’s urging us forward in our plan of action.  How about a depressed, or anxious, feeling?  That can be interpreted as the Lord putting the brakes on our current life path, showing us a need to seek another. A fleeting thought that enters our mind, can be interpreted as the Spirit revealing to us the path the Lord would have us to take.  Seeing the need in the life of other people, many times, is interpreted as the Lord’s call to a certain ministry.

I am not denying that the Holy Spirit, at times can use our thoughts, conscience, emotions and desires to aid us in the understanding of His will for our lives.  However, we should never rely exclusively on these inward “impressions” to decide the life path for us to take.  So how can we discern the Lord’s will in our life “impressions”?

1 Thess 5: 21 gives us a very straightforward answer to our question… “Prove all things, hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil.”

The Lord gives us some basic principles of guidance to “prove” (put to the test) our feelings thoughts and emotions in Phil 1:9-11:

 … that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and [in] all judgment” –

Our life should be centered upon showing love… love for our Lord and love for others around us.

How do we show our love for the Lord?  One way, is to put His will for our lives ahead of our own.  Another way, is to become familiar with His Word (knowledge) and then apply it to our life decision making (judgment).

“That ye may approve things that are excellent” –

Another way to show our love for our Lord is to take the time and effort to put to the test all our life experiences ,and feelings, so we can know which ones He approves.  By using our knowledge of His Word and then exercising Godly judgment, we can discern which emotions, desires and feelings are coming from Him.

This point cannot be underemphasized…. One of the greatest uses of His Word is to use it to prove what is pleasing to Him.  This applies to any area of our life.  The teachings we receive, the world’s influences on our lives, and His will for our lives (including the events we experience and the feelings we have) are to be put to the test using His Word and a mind that is renewed through a growing knowledge of His Word .   See Acts 17:10-11 (the Scriptures), Eph 5:6-13 (the truth) , Roms 12:1-3 (a renewed mind).

“that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; Being filled with the fruits of righteousness”  –

What is the result of putting the teachings we receive, the influences of the world, and our life experiences and feelings to the test?

It is two-fold righteousness both an inward righteousness (“sincerity”) and an outward righteousness (“without offence”). These two types of righteousness combine to bring about a life that is fulfilling His will and bearing an abundance of spiritual fruit.

“which are by Jesus Christ” –

Living a life that is fulfilling His will is a work of Christ in our hearts.  Christ, through His Spirit enables us to serve Him in spite of our sinful, fallen nature.

“unto the glory and praise of God” –

Living lives that fulfill His will brings all the praise and glory to the Lord.  Why? Because we are living our life according to His will due to His will because He is at work within us.

Phil 2:12-13

Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure.

THE PRACTICAL APPLICATION

For those who are saved…

We can prove what is His will for our lives, through an attitude of submission to His will and the renewal of our minds.  This renewal comes through a consistent increase in knowledge and application of His Word.

The more we are familiar with His Word, the better we can discern His will for our lives.  The greater our knowledge of His Word, the easier it is to discern if our thoughts, feelings and urgings are from the Lord or elsewhere.

Again, as in our prior study, we find that His Word takes preeminence in our life decisions.  If our feelings, thoughts, or emotions run parallel to His Word we can follow them without hesitancy knowing that we are living within the instructions of His Word.

If however, our impressions, in any way, depart from the principles laid out in His Word, we can rest assured that the impression is not from the Lord, but is being produced from a sinful origin (our flesh, the world, or powers of darkness).  In this case, we are to flee from the path these impressions would indicate we are to follow.

Rom 12:1-3 (KJV)

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think [of himself] more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

In our search for God’s Will to be shown to us in our lives….

Prayer Principle #4 –  We must pray for the Lord’s discernment of His leading in our lives.

For those who are not saved….

The Lord’s will for the life of those who have never trusted in Christ is clearly declared in 1Tim 2:3-6 …

For this [is] good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

For more information about salvation and the forgiveness of sins, please refer to my blog page found here: https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

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To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”

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Martin Luther King Jr. Day Devotion

SIH STSTA ICONMartin Luther King Jr. was pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama from 1954 to 1960.  In 1960, he moved to Atlanta and became co-pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church.  He remained in that position until his death in 1968.

While holding these pastoral positions, he was elected president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which was organized to give leadership to civil rights movement.  During his service as president, it is believed that he gave over 2500 speeches, led protests,  wrote 5 books and many articles.   All of this was done in his never-ending quest for equality and civil rights for all people.   This quest led to his arrest at least 25 times, as well as being assaulted numerous times for his beliefs.

Some of his most well-known writings and speeches were: “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” and his “I have a Dream Speech”

In 1968, Martin Luther King was murdered while standing on a balcony of a hotel in Memphis, Tennessee.

Martin Luther King Jr’s life is the epitome of a life sacrificed for the good of others.  Because of this, he received many awards during his life and following his death.  Some of these awards include five honorary degrees, as well as was named Man of the Year by Time magazine in 1963, Nobel Peace Prize in 1964, and the  Rosa L. Parks Award, presented by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. (posthumously) 1968

See the following links (and many others) for more in-depth information concerning MLK Jr’s life and accomplishments:

http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1964/king-bio.html

http://www.paralumun.com/uskingawards.htm

http://www.lib.lsu.edu/hum/mlk/srs218.html

One of the many famous quotations of Martin Luther King, Jr. is a question that he posed to his listeners, which became a summary of his entire life’s mission:  “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” http://blog.twitter.com/2010/01/persistent-and-urgent-question.html

Martin Luther King, Jr.’s life was filled with great sacrifices for others.  But the sacrifice made by our Lord Jesus Christ is the greatest of all sacrifices made on behalf of others…

THE SCRIPTURE:

Phil 2:4-8 (KJV)

4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. 5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

THE STUDY:

In Phil 2:4-8, we find some of the Lord’s instructions to us concerning living lives of service for others…

Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. 

One of the greatest responsibilities our God has handed to His people is the need to love and care for others (Matt 22:38-40, Mark 12:30-31, Gals 5:14, 1 John 3:17-19)  Because of this, we should be concerned about both the spiritual and physical needs of others:

Gal 6:7-10

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all [men], especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

For many of us, it is easy to love and care for those who are our friends, but what about those who oppose us?  We are to love and care for them as well.   It is a great opportunity for us to show the love of Christ to others:

Luke 6:35-36

But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and [to] the evil.  Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 

What is one key to showing consistent concern for others?  Thinking as Christ thinks.   What was the mindset of Christ, that allowed Him to literally give all for others that He loved?…

Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 

Christ’s mindset allowed Him to recognize His deity (John 10:30) …

But made himself of no reputation,

And be willing to “empty” Himself of the exercise of His divine attributes.  In other words, Christ choose to not exercise His great Godly abilities that He possessed.

 and took upon him the form of a servant,

He was willing to serve others, working for their benefit, by teaching, healing, and dying for them.

 and was made in the likeness of men: 

He was willing to take upon Himself, flesh (not sinful flesh), so as to be in the “likeness of men”.  His perfect humanity is being spoken of here. He was in the “form” of man although, as God, He was sinless.

 And being found in fashion as a man,

Not only did Christ physically appear as a man, but He also came to the earth, lived among men, conversed with men, ate as a man, worked as a man; ie – He lived his life just as any other man lived his life on earth (only without sin).  This is what is meant by Christ being found “in fashion” as a man.

 he humbled himself,

His entire earthly life was characterized by “humility”. From his birth in a stable, to His heinous suffering and death as a publicly convicted criminal (although He was actually innocent).

 and became obedient unto death,

Christ’s death was not only motivated by His love for others, but it was also an act of obedience to His Father in heaven. (Matt 26:39-42)

 even the death of the cross.

Christ displayed the ultimate self-sacrificial act by submitting to a horrible death on the cross.

The greatest aspect of His suffering was not the physical torture.  It was when He was separated from His heavenly Father, as He bore the sins of His people upon Himself. (Mark 15:34)

This was the supreme act of self-sacrifice… the sinless Son of God was willing to be humiliated by His own creation and separated from His heavenly Father.

THE PRACTICAL APPLICATION

For those who have trusted in Christ…

By following the Lord’s perfect example of self-sacrifice, we all can leave a legacy of a life that is pleasing to God and of benefit to all mankind.

1Cor 9:19-23

For though I be free from all [men], yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.  And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;  To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.   To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all [men], that I might by all means save some.23And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with [you].

For those who have never trusted in Christ…

God the Father chose to give His Son to be the Savior of His people.  Then Christ, in submission to the will of His Father, came to the earth, lived a life of self-sacrifice and then died on the cross, as He bore our sins.  All of this was done to make it possible for the people of God to be saved.

By coming to a realization that we can do nothing to save ourselves, we must come to Christ and rely upon Him to intervene in our life and save us from our sins.

Rom 3:19-26

Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law [is] the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God [which is] by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth [to be] a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, [I say], at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

For more information about the way to salvation please take a look at my blog page found here:

https://settledinheaven.wordpress.com/all-about-salvation/

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To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at  http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

If you have any questions concerning this blog, or if you have a subject you would like discussed, please feel free to email me at settledinheaven@gmail.com.    I will answer all emails via my blog, email, or both.

Take A Look At My Wife’s Artistic/Scriptural Devotion Blog http://alivewithchristart.blogspot.com

Follow my Squidoo Instructional Lens “Presenting God’s Grace” “The Solemn Obligation To Present the Doctrines of Grace to the Lost and Saved Alike” http://www.squidoo.com/presenting-gods-grace

May the Lord bless your study of His Word.  Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”

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