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Summary: A general challenge to look at the way Paul initially challenged the church of Philippi and to respond to it

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“Letters From Prison”

Philippians 1:3-11

PHP 1:3 I thank my God every time I remember you. 4 In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy 5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, 6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. 7 It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart; for whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me. 8 God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ--to the glory and praise of God.

INTRODUCTION

• This morning, I want to begin a series on the book of Philippians…we’re going to break this book into small parts and learn a lot of great things from it .

• Today, I want to begin with the 1st chapter and present Paul’s letter from prison.

• What are some highlights from this letter that should challenge us this morning?

I. Paul’s CONFIDENCE {vs 6}

6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

• Let’s remind ourselves whom Paul is writing to. This is a church that he founded/started. It was in an area that saw a great move of God {see Acts 16}

• Yet, Paul did not look at these people like a trophy on the shelf…he knew there was more that the Lord wanted to do in their lives

• With God, there are no incomplete projects…Jesus finishes the things that He starts

• You are a work in progress, friend! That is a good thing!

II. Paul’s CONFINEMENT {vs 7}

7 It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart; for whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me.

• The great man of God who did so many great things for the Lord found himself in a prison

• Sometimes, bad things will happen to very good people!

• Do you allow the negative circumstances and unfair treatment we receive to keep us from doing the work and the ministry of the Lord? How about your walk with the Lord?

ILLUSTRATION

Deaths of the Disciples

History tells us…

1. John died of extreme old age exiled to the island of Patmos.

2. Judas Iscariot, after betraying his Lord, hanged himself.

3. Peter was crucified; head downward, during the persecution of Nero.

4. Andrew died on a cross at Patrae, a Grecian Colony.

5. James, the younger, son of Alphaeus, was thrown from a pinnacle of the

Temple, and then beaten to death with a club.

6. Bartholomew was flayed alive in Albanapolis, Armenia.

7. James, the elder son of Zebedee, was beheaded at Jerusalem.

8. Thomas, the doubter, was run through the body with a lance at Coromandel,

in the East Indies.


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