Summary: During this series we will be looking at Paul’s letter to the Philippian church. Paul founded the church at Philippi and wrote the letter during a time of imprisonment in Rome. One of the themes in the book is joy. (some thoughts taken from a series by Cr
Philippians Pt5- Joy in Believing
Study of Philippians- letter- meant to convey life.
Last week looked at v2.16- Word of Life-
Jn 5:26 (NASB) “For just as the Father has life in Himself, even so He gave to the Son also to have life in Himself;
We were created to drink of this same life-
Jn 3:15 (NASB) so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life.
I am captivated by Jn 4 as a word for COTRM-
Jn 4.10, 13-14
One of the themes we have looked at is that of joy-
Chap 1- Joy in suffering
Paul goes to Rome as prisoner instead as a preacher.
Chap 2- Joy in serving
You will never find a joyful, selfish person.
Chap 3- Joy in believing
When we put our faith in God’s son Jesus Christ, there is joy in being right in our relationship with God.
Christ followers- of all people- should we not be joyful?
Paul offers advice on how to safeguard our joy-
1. Resist Legalism
Legalism- substituting rules for relationship
It is thinking we are going to be made right w/God by keeping rules rather than having- living relationship.
Paul pulls no punches- look out for dogs.
Dogs were very lowly animals- traveled in packs.
False teachers- Judaizers- to be right w/God-
must be- born Jewish, circumcised.
Jews called Gentiles dogs- Paul calls Judaizers dogs.
Outward circumcision- was to be- picture- inward circumcision of the heart- cutting away of sin.
Without the inner reality, outward circumcision was no more than mutilation of the body.
You cannot rejoice in the Lord and at the same time rejoice in the flesh.
Balance this with what we saw last week-
Just as you cannot be saved through good works, it is also error to believe you can be saved and not exhibit good works (fruit).
Paul says- you want to look at outward- look at my life.
Three ways that legalism shows itself in our lives-
Rituals- not bad in themselves- unless- become something we trust in- makes us acceptable to God.
(something we do for a long time becomes sacred)
(video clip of men hitting their heads)
Religion- root word- obligation, to bind to something.
You cannot substitute christianity w/religious obligation.
Religion is man’s outward attempt to reach God, Christianity is God’s outward attempt to reach man through Christ. (Craig Groeschel)
Paul- Pharisee- dedicated to following over 600 rules.
Many of those rules revolved around keeping- sabbath.
When we slip into legalism we lose our joy.
2. Refocus our Affections
In Act 9- Paul on road to Damascus- had an encounter w/God- his whole being- revolutionized-
entire value system changed,
everything in this life had less hold on his heart.
He learned- external efforts/things- rubbish to God.
Knowing- intimate way of knowing-husband knows wife.
God wants us to know Him like those closes to us.
Rubbish- slang word for dung, curse word, s-word.
(v3.9) Right standing with God only comes by faith.
If Christ abides in our hearts, we will be found in Him-
Col 3:3 (NASB) For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
Paul wanted to experience the power that raised Christ from- dead- he recognize that- Christ died for sin.
Therefore- he must yearn for sin to die in his own life, so he could experience- resurrected life of God.
The Christ that some know is greater than the Christ that others have experienced. Why?
They have a greater knowledge (knowing) of His character/capabilities- greater confidence in God.
Ja 4.8- draw near to God, cleanse your hands from sin.
3. Reject Complacency
Press on- to pursue, follow in haste, strive to do something w/intense effort.
Paul- serious about God- but did not believe he- arrived.
Complacency-spiritual enemy that makes us vulnerable- it opens the door for us to drift from God.
The same w/any area- health, exercise, marriage, etc.
To become everything God wants you to be we must develop a bad memory- two things must forget-
Leave them behind, never look at them.
Many are bound up in the sin of yesterday-
if you have repented then let it go.
Look at Paul- killed innocent Christian’s.
Whenever you put your trust in some success to make you more acceptable to God- you are in danger.
They are no more than dung- do not earn points w/God.
Perfect- mature in behavior.
Heb 5:14 (NASB) But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.
Surround yourself w/people/resources- challenge you.
Do those more zealous for God trouble you? Why?
Perhaps they challenge our own complacencies.
Many around you-will mislead by- lifestyle/conversation.
Guard against those who live for the desires of their own flesh/their mind always set on- things of this life.