Summary: Our motive for service proves our choice of master. Paul reminds us that if our motive of service proves Christ to be our Master, then the results should be a life of bearing fruit.
In our study last wee, taken from the 1st chapter of Philippians a verse 15, we found that “others” (15) were sharing “Christ”. Some of these were brothers whom Paul had earlier influenced and they had become more courageous and fearless in their spread of the gospel.
**WOULDN’T IT BE GREAT that another would profess that their courage in sharing the Gospel was on account of YOUR EXAMPLE?
Others were obviously other preachers, some, as we will see today, were preaching for good motives and others not so good.
Opportunity to CONSIDER 3 QUESTIONS REGARDING THE CHOICES WE MAKE:
1. What Is Your Motive? (self/sin or Christ)
2. Your Motive Shows Your Choice in Life. (self/sin or Christ)
3. True Motives Produce Sincere Fruit (fruitful saint or fruitless saint)
First, a QUESTION:
I. VERSES 15-19: WHAT IS YOUR MOTIVE?
Our first section causes us to Consider our “Motive for Service” – And while Paul is talking about the AREA OF MINISTRY, it APPLIES IN ALL OF LIFE.
Preaching was being shared for ONE of TWO REASONS – both of which advanced the gospel:
1. 15 “envy & rivalry” further explained in 17 as ‘selfish ambition & insincerity’”. (Actually, some of the Motives were so out of whack that (VS 17) - to ‘stir up trouble’.)
2. 15 “goodwill” further explained in 16 as ‘love in defense of the gospel’”
The sad part is that I wonder if they really knew the damage they were causing Paul.
ILL: Like the family that leaves the church because God calls them away. NO hard feelings, NO Problems – but then do everything in their power to pull others away – even to the point of telling gossip and lies. (not realizing the damage – hope not anyway)
** WE need to be careful and not allow our childish ways, personality flaws, insecurities, and imperfections GET IN THE WAY OF OUR CAUSE! (the CAUSE of defending the gospel (12)
QUESTION: WHY DO YOU DO WHAT YOU DO (in ALL of life)” – Is it in “Defense of the Gospel”?
1. In the workplace, would your actions be that of “selfish ambition and insincerity” or that of showing a “defense of the gospel”?
(clock, phone, internet, honesty, reporting, support, integrity, etc.)
2. In your social circle, would your stand, gossip, jokes, discussions, advice be that of “selfish ambition and insincerity” or that of “a defense of the gospel”?
3. In your home, would your habits, phone conversations, relationship, and counsel be that of “selfish ambition and insincerity” or that of “love”?
4. In the church, would your position of responsibility show that to be one of “selfish ambition and insincerity” or that of “love”?
WHY DO YOU DO WHAT YOU DO? WHAT IS YOUR REAL MOTIVE?
I think sometimes we tend to forget that this life IS NOT all there is as Paul begins to show in this next section reminding us that WE MUST …
II. (VERSES 20-21) YOUR MOTIVE SHOWS YOUR CHOICE OF SERVICE
Sometimes, maybe we tend to forget this life is NOT all there is, but “after that the judgment”?
20- “in no way be ashamed but have sufficient courage… … life or death”
**– IF Paul is saved, what does he have to be concerned about? Ashamed of what?
There will be a DAY that we will give an account for the TRUE MOTIVE OF LIFE – THAT OF SELF OR CHRIST! Christians will not stand in judgement of sin if their stand is in CHRIST! BUT WE WILL STAND IN JUDGMENT OF WHAT WE HAVE DONE WITH WHAT WE’VE BEEN GIVEN!
READ 1 CORINTHIANS 3:10b-15
Everyone’s work will be put through the fire to see whether or not it keeps its value.
“Fire” pictures a scorching test to reveal the value of the “building”. Christians have the foundation of Christ and are to build on that foundation.
WORKS made with gold, silver, and jewels will stand up to this test; those thrown together with wood, hay, and straw will go up in flames and be destroyed.
What will your motive in life show? As Scott asked so wonderfully in Sunday School 2 years ago, “WHAT WILL YOUR POSTURE BE?”
VERSE 21 – KEY VERSE
Paul preferred to be with Christ! But until God agreed with Him, he would make his stand WITH CHRIST
Verse 21 is further explained in our final section which simply put, reminds us THAT…
III. (VERSES 22-26) TRUE MOTIVES PRODUCE SINCERE FRUIT
READ VERSES 22-26
Many fail to realize that our purpose here on earth is not to “Get SAVED and RELAX” BUT RATHER – to “GET SAVED & then “serve Christ by serving others” so that another’s WALK MAY BE INFLUENCED.
MATT. 20.28 (3rd tab)
3 Phrases in this section DEFINE OUR PURPOSE: (if you like to underline)