Summary: Part of an extensive study in Philippians, we are reminded here to fall in love with Jesus and each other more and more.
Content in Christ
Falling in Love Again
(R. Darrel Davis) “Dearest Jimmy, No words could ever express the great unhappiness I’ve felt since breaking our engagement. Please say you’ll take me back. No one could ever take your place in my heart, so please forgive me. I love you, I love you, I love you! Yours forever, Marie... P.S., And congratulations on winning the state lottery.”
Ain’t love grand? Not always, is it?
Who do you love? What do you love? Why do you love?
We’re going to look at a different kind of love today.
•We’re going to look at someone who is truly in love with the hope that we, too, will catch that same love. Turn to Phil. 1:7-11 (?Memorized)
We’re studying Phil., Paul’s “Joy Letter”. One of encouragement
I. PAUL’S PASSION v. 7-8
A. How did he feel about them?
7IT IS RIGHT FOR ME TO FEEL THIS WAY ABOUT ALL OF YOU,
What way? Cf. vv. 3-6 (remembered, rejoiced, related to them, encouraged them)
SINCE I HAVE YOU IN MY HEART; (poss. “You have me in your heart”)
It’s a mutual love and longing. Both translations work here.
(WP) The pastor who, like Paul, holds his people in his heart will find them holding him in their hearts.
•“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
Paul is passionate about the Philippians. He sincerely loves them deeply.
•Hypocritical praise – don’t really mean it. “How are you doing”? “I’ll pray for you.”
How do we feel about each other?
How do we really feel toward each other? Toward our leaders? Toward our followers?
Do we really care about each other – have them in our hearts?
B. Why did he feel this way about them?
FOR WHETHER I AM IN CHAINS OR DEFENDING AND CONFIRMING THE GOSPEL, ALL OF YOU SHARE IN GOD’S GRACE WITH ME.
Remember, Paul is in bondage, in prison as he writes this.
DEFENDING and CONFIRMING (establishing) THE GOSPEL are legal terms, used in the courtroom.
•It’s quite possible Paul’s thinking of his upcoming trial.
More than that, I believe he’s thinking of his ministry over the past several years.
•He spent his Christian life defending and confirming the Gospel.
And once again, he realizes he’s not alone in this defense.
ALL OF YOU SHARE IN GOD’S GRACE WITH ME.
Lit. all of you being fellow partakers (sugkoinonos/koinonia) with me of the grace.
All of them were fellow partners of God’s grace (cf. v. 5).
Illus. One of a lawyer’s key goals in his career is to become a partner in a law firm.
•He works hard building his reputation, winning every case in order to be established.
•All believers/saints are invited/called to share in defending/establishing the Gospel.
1 Pet. 3:15 …ALWAYS BE PREPARED TO GIVE AN ANSWER TO EVERYONE WHO ASKS YOU TO GIVE THE REASON FOR THE HOPE THAT YOU HAVE. BUT DO THIS WITH GENTLENESS AND RESPECT, (because of God’s grace on our behalf).
How are we partners of God’s grace?
8GOD CAN TESTIFY (God is my witness) HOW I LONG FOR (yearn, cf. v. 4) ALL OF YOU WITH THE AFFECTION OF CHRIST JESUS.
AFFECTION – “inward parts”/bowels; emotions, the seat of affection, tender concern.
How much does Jesus long for us?
“I long for you with the same longing that Christ has for you”.
Paul isn’t just tickling their ears. He’s serious about his affections/love for them.
Do we have that same longing for/tender concern for our fellow saints?
II. PAUL’S PRAYER v. 9-11
Remember that since v. 4, Paul has been telling them of his prayers for them.
A. What does he pray for?
9AND THIS IS MY PRAYER: THAT YOUR LOVE MAY (yet, still) ABOUND (over and above, may keep on overflowing) MORE AND MORE
1.He prays for abounding love.
Love for Christ and for one another (2:2, 4:2).
They had already displayed this love, but Paul prays that it abounds more and more.
1 Thes. 4:1 FINALLY, BROTHERS, WE INSTRUCTED YOU HOW TO LIVE IN ORDER TO PLEASE GOD, AS IN FACT YOU ARE LIVING. NOW WE ASK YOU AND URGE YOU IN THE LORD JESUS TO DO THIS MORE AND MORE.
1 Thes. 4:10 AND IN FACT, YOU DO LOVE ALL THE BROTHERS THROUGHOUT MACEDONIA. YET WE URGE YOU, BROTHERS, TO DO SO MORE AND MORE.
2 Thes. 1:3 WE OUGHT ALWAYS TO THANK GOD FOR YOU, BROTHERS, AND RIGHTLY SO, BECAUSE YOUR FAITH IS GROWING MORE AND MORE, AND THE LOVE EVERY ONE OF YOU HAS FOR EACH OTHER IS INCREASING.
Illus. “More and More”
"I love you more and more, every day that we’re together.
More and more, our love keeps growing strong.
And as we love the Father, He gives us something more