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?