Summary: Message on the Foundations for our Unity in Christ.
LBC Sermon-One-Foundations of Unity-Phil. 2:1-4
"Ice Age" Clip-Scene 14-end w/ “we are one strange herd”
That is a picture of us as the body of X.
-apart from X would you know the other people in this room?
-But, in the same way the baby in that clip brought those animals together into one “herd”, the baby in the manger has brought all of us together into the body of X, the church. Christ has chosen each of us to be a part of His body, and by brining us all into His body, He has made us one. Talk about that this morn. Unity.
Turn to Phil 2:1-4
Background-Background-prison epistle, most likely written while under house arrest in Rome around 61 A.D.
#1 reason to thank them for the gift that they had sent him when they learned about his imprisonment there in Rome.
-also wanted to address a few other things in the letter including the importance of unity in the body.
2 areas where they are encouraged to stand united.
1:27-Paul’s encouragement To “stand firm in one spirit” contending for the gospel together.
1:27-30 Standing united against Opposition from the outside
2:1-4 Standing united against dissension from within. Read.
Phil. 2:1-4-“If you have any encouragement from being united with X, if any comfort from His love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (NIV)
3 main points Paul makes in this passage.
Foundations of Unity (1)
-4 things that are our unity as the body of X are built upon.
all four are indisputable facts-certainties not maybes, reminders of what God has done for us.
-“if”-Can be accurately translated “If such and such is true-and I know that it is”
So These make up the foundation of the unity that he is calling them to.
Encouragement in Christ-Websters-the act of inspiring with courage or giving one support, confidence or hope.
Every believer has received encouragement from X. He has come alongside each of us and gives us courage, confidence and hope
B. Comfort of Love or consolation of His Love
Consolation/comort-Greek compound word-towards & to speak.
-coming close to someone’s side as we speak to them. Not only is X our encourager, giving us hope and confidence, He is coming close to us and giving us the comfort that we need.
C. Fellowship of the Spirit
-koinonia-common, shared by all- joint business partnerships, marriage contracts, any relationship where the people shared things in common
In the Christian community, it was used for everything that believers could share -- Christ, the Word, prayer, the Lord’s Supper, and material gifts. Koinonia or fellowship is not just saying Hi on Sunday and talking about the weather or having a potluck and drinking red punch, for a believer, koinonia, true biblical fellowship is sharing the things of Christ.
"Paul is reminding them that the fellowship of the HS is a reality, not simply a beautiful ideal.
Each and every believer has personal fellowship with the HS in his or her private life and in turn all believers are united by the same spirit in fellowship. The practical application of this truth is that factions or divisiveness should have no place in the body of X." (John MacArthur)
D. Any Affection and Compassion
Affection--KJV-bowels Gk.splagchnon In classical Greek used to describe the upper abdominal area, heart, lungs, liver, etc- the Greeks regarded as the seat of affections and emotions, such as anger and love. splagchnon refers to deep, internal caring “I feel it in the pit of my stomach” “broken-hearted” or “gut-wrenching”
That is the level of love and affection that God has for us, loves us deeply
Compassion-Quite simply, not only does God love us deeply, but He has shown that love for us, through action. He sees our needs and takes action.
So, the ‘if’s’ of vs. 1 express truths that the Phil. Obviously agree to: Yes, they had been encouraged by their union with X, Yes, they had experienced God’s love, Yes, they had enjoyed the fellowship of God’s Spirit. Yes, they had received an outpouring of mercy from God.”
That’s the foundation for our unity. So, in light of all that you have received from God, it shouldn’t be such a great thing to ask that you maintain the unity that God has given you.
Vs. 2-Make my joy complete-what was needed to make his joy “complete” was for the church there to maintain unity, work together harmoniously and clear up their petty quarrels.