Summary: This message examines 3 aspects of salvation.
“GOD WILL FINISH WHAT HE STARTS” Phil. 1:1-11
INTRO – Don’t you like for someone who takes a job to see it all the way through to completion? Whether it’s a mechanic, a doctor, or a waiter in a restaurant, we simply expect that when someone takes a job, they will complete the job in a satisfactory manner. (Show model of FLC) In the construction of our FLC, Paul Jackson & Son has made a commitment to us to see the construction of that facility all the way through to completion. Our architect, Hal Brumfield has made a commitment to us to see the construction of the FLC all the way through to completion. We would not enter into contracts with these people if we did not fully expect them to complete the jobs that they have agreed to complete.
When a person enters into a relationship with God through placing their faith in Christ alone for their salvation, they have a biblical guarantee that God will finish what He starts. Don’t have to wonder or worry about that. God will finish what He starts.
We begin a 4-week series in the book of Philippians this morning. It is such an encouraging book in the NT, filled with joy and passion. The words “joy” and “rejoice” occur several times throughout the 4 short chapters of this book. It is a book that contains some of Paul’s most familiar, and most quoted statements, such as: “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain (1:21);” “Rejoice in the Lord always; I will say it again, rejoice (4:4);” “And the peace of G, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (4:7);” “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (4:13);” “And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (4:19).”
It is a positive, uplifting message of hope that the apostle Paul writes to the church at Philippi. This church was a strong church. It did not have many of the problems that some of the other first-century churches were dealing with – doctrinal problems; leadership problems; internal conflict; immorality problems. Paul did not have to issue any strong rebukes to this church. Rather, he expressed his love and appreciation to them for their work in the spreading of the Gospel. They had partnered with him in the work of the Gospel, supported him in his missionary efforts, and constantly prayed for him.
This book is such an important book for us in the Church today b/c it lets us see and know how wonderful relationships w/in the Body of X can and should be. Of all places in the world, the Church should be characterized by joy, unity, love, and purpose. You and I have the privilege of being partnered together in the life-changing work of Christ through the ministry of this church. You and I have the privilege of living and working together in unity through the ministry of this church. You and I have the privilege of showing to the world what true Christian joy is through our excitement in worshipping and serving God. You and I have the privilege of knowing Christ and living a life of commitment to Him – the highest of all privileges. These essential truths – partnership, unity, joy, and commitment – are the foundation stones for the book of Philippians, and, hopefully, will be the foundation stones for our lives and for this church’s life.
It all starts with our salvation. Nothing else matters if we do not have this foundation in our lives. The most important foundation stone is the stone of our salvation, built upon the Solid Rock of Jesus Christ. We must build our lives upon Him – His words, His actions, His teachings, His life, His example. “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like the wise man who built his house on the rock,” (Mt. 7:24).
There are 3 truths about our salvation that we find in Phil. 1:6:
I. GOD COMMENCES OUR SALVATION – “He who BEGAN a good work…”
A. Salvation is God’s idea, God’s plan, God’s work. It is all about Him from beginning to end.
a. It was His plan to sacrifice His only Son to pay the price for our sins.
b. It was His plan to send the Holy Spirit to convict us of our need for Him.
c. It was His plan to orchestrate our lives in such a way so that we could hear the Gospel and respond to it.
B. He actually commenced the plan for our salvation before the world ever began.
a. Rev. 13:8 tells us that Jesus, the Lamb of G, was slain “from the creation of the world.”