Short Supply

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:19-30 (day six)

For I have no one like him…Philippians 2:20

What set Timothy apart? Was it his unique giftedness? His eloquence? Or maybe he stood head and shoulders above all the others. Perhaps he was more educated than most, or had a quick wit. It could have been his comedic timing, or deft use of sarcasm. Maybe Paul just needed an extra pair of hands to run errands while he was in prison.

Paul mentions none of those things. We know two reasons Paul described him this way; he genuinely cared for others, and concerned himself mostly with Jesus’ interests rather than his own.

Make no mistake, Paul’s mentioning of Timothy and Epaphroditus was strategic. Aside from Jesus, he intended to tie their examples to his command:

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit…Philippians 2:3

Men and woman, like this, were in short supply then and today.

Be different. Be a Timothy. You will be set apart too.

In the Lord

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:19-30 (day five)

“I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon”.
It’s been a long 7 months and I miss seeing and being with so many of our church family. The Lord has led some to come back for worship. Others are being wise, prayerful, and careful (as we all should) as they listen to the Lord about their return timing.

There is a tangible joy and delight (for them and for me) when (each week) someone comes back for the first time since the pandemic. You can see it in their eyes and sense it in their hearts. (“that you may rejoice at seeing him again”)

I like the way Paul frames His decision to send Timothy back to the church in Philippi (in the Lord). Trusting God’s leadership and guidance in this (and every decision Paul makes). I believe God will help us, guide us, and speak to us (each and all) about when we could and should return. So, while my heart is heavy, it is also full of hope and confidence in God’s strength, sovereignty, and wisdom in protecting  and gathering His church. I hope “in the Lord” to be with you soon, as God continues to bless and grow His kingdom through FBCSA.

Rejoice

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:19-30 (day four)

Just because Paul wrote about having joy in all situations, does not mean he did not have strong feelings that caused him great grief.  Verse 27 tells us that God spared Epaphroditus so Paul would not have sorrow upon sorrow.  What was causing Paul’s sorrow that would have been double sorrow with the loss of his friend?  Paul was in prison…he could not visit the people he loved and he could not spend time teaching them about living the Christian life.  How could he have joy and sorrow at the same time?

Paul’s joy was not dependent upon the circumstances surrounding his life…imprisonment, separation from loved ones, etc.  His joy was the result of his relationship with God through Jesus Christ.  Nothing could change that relationship.  Sorrow comes based on our circumstances.  For Paul, it was his imprisonment, separation from loved ones, etc.  Even though he had deep sorrow, he could have a sustaining joy in Christ.

Have you discovered the secret of true joy?  Have you been distracted by your circumstances and allowed them to steal your joy?  We see in verse 1 of chapter 3 what Paul admonishes…”rejoice in the Lord.”

Need

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:19-30 (day three)

For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare.vs. 20

“…so that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your condition.”

At this point, Paul just straight up says, “I need some encouragement.” He tells the Philippians that he’s sending Timothy to them to do encouragement reconnaissance. Vulnerability before others long ago ceased to frighten Paul. He couldn’t manufacture his own encouragement. If he could, the existence of others would for him be superfluous. But others did matter. They could hurt him, and did, as he makes clear elsewhere. His energy was needed for the tasks before him, and he could not afford to spare the energy it takes to project an image of the self-contained, savvy spokesman for the Savior. The sign on his life reads, “Do resuscitate.”

Partnership in the Gospel

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:19-30 (day two)

For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare.vs. 20

Ministry can be lonely. Sometimes where God has called you is a true mission field, and you are the only carrier of the Light. You may be in that season right now. Know that you are not alone. What treasure, therefore, it is when you have someone who knows and affirms your call. When someone  can come alongside and encourage your walk there can be such a great boon to your spirit. Don’t overlook those people in your life. When God sends a kindred spirit, rejoice in that blessing. You should also be reminded that you, too, are called to be that for others. Who is your partner in the Gospel?

Monday Re:Verse Blog Post – 10/19/2020

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:19-30 (day one)

Join us as Senior Pastor Chris Johnson, Associate Pastor Aaron Hufty and Associate Pastor Bryan Richardson walk us through Philippians 2:19-30 in our Fall Sermon Series: “Pure Joy” a study of Philippians.

Sight and Light

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:12-18 (day seven)

“in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world” vs 15b

Darkness is the absence of light which results in the inability to see properly. Sight is only possible because of light. Without light we would be blindly trying to navigate using senses that were not intended for the sole purpose of navigation. Help me connect the dots: this crooked and perverse world is living in darkness. They are trying to navigate this world without light. They are looking for direction from things that are not intended to be used for sight.

How then do we shine in the darkness to help them see? This passage gave us clear instruction: work hard and don’t complain, hear and do what Scripture says, and look for joy in all circumstances. Be consistent in these things, and you will appear much different than the world around you! You will be a light!

Good Work

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:12-18 (day six)

Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.” Genesis 1:28

Work hard to show the results of your salvation,… Philippians 2:12

Be fruitful. Multiply. Have dominion. Work. From the very beginning God set it in the heart of humanity, His image bearers, to do good work. Good work has always been tied to fruitfulness, and fruitfulness to God’s good pleasure and glory. Paul wasn’t commanding the Philippians to begin something new, but to return to something old.

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10

Do some good work.

Hold Fast

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:12-18 (day five)

“among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life,”“You’re in the midst of a twisted and perverse generation”.

Sound familiar?  I suspect the Philippians sensed it and felt it much like we do today. Anger. Dysfunction. Argument. Tension. Sadness. Is there any way to rise above it all?  Any way to sense and see a bigger and better life and existence?  Paul says, “Yes! by HOLDING fast (to)the word of life”. Paul is exhorting these believers to keep looking in and at the scriptures. He’s reminding them that they must stay faithfully connected to the scriptures. He is challenging them to think constantly with a biblical mindset.
Paul believed holding fast to the scriptures was crucial in living a life filled with joy and pleasing to God. So did Peter. “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68).
Do you?

God’s Pleasure

Re:Verse passage – Philippians 2:12-18 (day four)

D. Sanctification –work out your salvation. We never arrive at the place where we have done all we need to do in our Christian faith. It takes a lifetime of moving toward holiness.  Believers are doers…we are always working, planning, serving, and becoming.  It is not by our own initiative or diligence though.  Verse 13 says it is God who shapes our will and drives us to work.  God calls us to obedience and holiness and then empowers us to respond.  It is out of His love and His good pleasure that God is at work in us.  The result of His work is that we appear as lights in the darkness…truth in the midst of evil!

How do we accomplish this obedience and holiness in our lives?  Does God just zap us with His will?  Spending time in God’s Word and Prayer gives God an avenue into our lives.  Seeking and finding causes us to have the mind of Christ and to bring pleasure to God!