Summary: This is an exposition of Philippians 4.4-9.
Inward Christian Qualities
Text: Phil 4.4-9
1. The Christian life is not conformity to an outward standard, like the Pharisees, but rather inward qualities that are developed and lived from the inside out.
2. Our series on Philippians has uncovered a great many of these inward qualities: Graciousness, Love, Courage, Unity, Commitment, Boldness, Unselfishness, Humility, Steadfastness, Faithfulness, and Purpose are some of the inner qualities we have studied.
3. In the text today we read about 3 inner Christian qualities and 3 strategies on how to develop these qualities.
I. Three Christian Qualities
A. Joy – 4.4
1. cairo - Present Imperative tense, lit.
“Be rejoicing” (“again” – see Phil 3.1)
2. Definition of Christian Joy = “It is a
quality of peace and strength that
enables believers to rejoice even amid
trouble and sorrow. “ - Don Fleming.
3. ILLUSTRATION: Are you a carrot, an
egg or a coffee bean?
B. Moderation – 4.5
1. Epieikhs – “appropriate”, “reasonable”,
2. "Moderation," says Dr. Macknight, "means
meekness under provocation, readiness to
forgive injuries, equity in the management
of business, candour in judging of the
characters and actions of other
sweetness of disposition, and the entire
government of the passions." —Adam
3. ILLUSTRATION: Foggy night in London- man shuffled into a music shop-Clutched under arm a violin. "Will you buy -I’m starving. - I already have several violins," - Will a guinea ($5.00 at the time) help - "Oh, yes," - took the money and disappeared -picked up the violin, took the bow and drew it across the strings. -a deep mellow tone. Surprised, - inside the violin. - these words: "Antonio Stradivari...1704." Moderation is to life as a Stradivarious is to sound.
C. Freedom from worry – 4.6
1. “Be anxious for nothing” – The greek here
prohibits the continuance of an action
already going on – IOW = “Stop
2. “nothing” = lit. “not one thing”. Wuest –
“Stop perpetually worrying about even one
3. “Keep” = rather “guard”, i.e. against worry
II. Three Christian Strategies
A. Prayer – 4.6-7
1. “prayer” as an act of worship and
“supplication” a personal request (no
need for a human priest).
2. Adam Clarke “This peace passeth all
understanding; it is of a very
different nature from all that can
arise from human occurrences; it is a
peace which Christ has purchased, and
which God dispenses; it is felt by all
the truly godly, but can be explained
by none—Adam Clarke’s Commentary
B. Right Thinking – 4.8 “Think” = “careful
reflection”. IOW Reflect carefully on…
1. True things.
2. Honorable things.
3. Righteous things.
4. Pure things.
5. Loveable things.
6. Attractive things.
7. Excellent things.
8. Praiseworthy things.
C. Proper Behavior – 4.9
1. Proper behavior proceeds from the
heart and is not legislated from the
outside. Moral behavior is based upon
and proceeds from moral principles,
these are inward in nature.
2. Earlier it was “ and the peace of God”,
here it is “and the God of peace”.
*Anonymous quote: “Safety consists not in the absence of danger but in the presence of God.”