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Summary: There is no truer indicator of a Christian’s level of spiritual maturity than their prayer life. Paul’s outward ministry reveals so much about Paul, but his prayer life gives us a glimpse at his soul.

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Essentials for Growth in Godliness

Philippians 1:9-11

Intro

As we have started our study of the book of Philippians, we have already learned that Paul was a man that did not find his joy in the circumstances of the world, but rather in God. I think we can all agree that Paul had a great passion to see fellow believers grow. This passion was not just seen in his preaching and teachings, but also in his prayers.

There is no truer indicator of a Christian’s level of spiritual maturity than their prayer life. Paul’s outward ministry reveals so much about Paul, but his prayer life gives us a glimpse at his soul.

The majority of Paul’s recorded prayers circle around his desire to see Christian’s grow in the Lord. In the verses that we are going to be looking at today, we will see just that. Paul gives us 5 specific things in his prayer to the people of Philippi, which show us his desire for then and today. You will see that as we look at the 5, they build on one another, to make a solid foundation.

READ Phil 1:9-11

The 5 Levels of a Great Foundation

1. Love (v.9)

a. Agape Love, unconditional, no limits or boundaries

i. It is divine, its source is God (1 Jn 4:7-8,10,19)

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son {to be} the propitiation for our sins. We love, because He first loved us.

1. Godly love is produced only by the working of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of those who belong to Him.

ii. It is reality (Jn 13:34-35)

"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. "By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

1. The love of fellow Christians is a sure mark of saving faith.

iii. It is decisive (Jn 13:34)

1. It is not based on feelings

2. It is a conscious, intentional choice to show kindness and generosity

iv. It is dynamic

1. It is not a mere emotion of feeling, as it grows it finds increasing expression in character and service.

2. It can abound “overflowing in great abundance”

3. It must remain grounded

v. It is discerning

1. It calls us to achieve a mature insight and understanding.

2. It is blind by personal taste of preferences

2. Excellence (v.10a)

a. Love incorporates the knowledge of God’s truth and spiritual discernment

b. Excellence then moves us to think and live biblically

c. When we are dominated and controlled by the love of God, we will want nothing more then to live according to His will

d. The word “approve” when translated means to allow, examine, or prove”

i. If we are living according to the will of God, we will be able to examine the actions taking place around them and deem them approved or disapproved for our life’s.

e. Tragically too many Christians are easily led astray and tossed from side to side, because they were not able to properly examine the circumstances.


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