Summary: A Study of Pauls Epistle to the Philippians

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Sermon Series: “Help, I Can’t Find My Joy!”

(A Study of Paul’s Epistle to the Philippians)

Sermon #4 “You can have Joy in Godly Living”

Series Text: Philippians 4:4

INTRODUCTION: Welcome to our final study through Paul’s letter to the Church at Philippi.

We have seen that JOY is the overwhelming attitude displayed in this epistle.

We learned in chapter #1 how we can have joy in suffering as long as we remember that:

(1) God’s in control

(2) His plan is being worked out

(3) He isn’t finished yet!

We learned in chapter #2 how we can have joy in service by:

(1) Humbling ourselves as Christ did

(2) Staying the course as Timothy did

(3) Offering God our lives as Epaphroditus did

We learned in chapter #3 how we can have joy in believing because:

(4) Faith protects us from those who would steal our joy (false teachers)

(5) Faith reminds us of what confirms our joy (Christ’s sacrifice)

(6) Faith looks forward to the reason for our joy (Eternity with God)

***This week we see Paul beginning to wrap-up his letter to the members of the Philippian church, and he is encouraging them in their Christian walk.

This portion is the most practical in the entire book, as it really hits on subjects we all deal with in the Church today.

The idea he is expounding on is how to be Christ-like.

He teaches them that “godly living” requires us to:

I. Avoid Petty arguments (v.2-3)

a. Paul’s letter does not contain any rebukes over doctrinal errors in the Philippian church…But he does address some relational problems

b. Euodia and Syntyche were two women who were having some type of dispute within the church

i. We are not told what the dispute was over

ii. The very fact that he knows about it shows that it is a little more than just a silly disagreement

1. It is possible that the two women had started factions in the church

2. One had coerced a group into her corner, while the other did the same

3. Paul saw the potential that the two women of influence had and feared that the church may split over their dispute

c. This is typical of any ministry of any age

i. Paul was not dealing with a unique situation here

ii. Every pastor has, at one time or another, had to try to resolve differences between two opposing people or groups

iii. And the sad thing is that these are mostly petty arguments

iv. Illustration: “Most wouldn’t argue” I would venture to guess that not many in the church would stand up and voice their strong opinion about serious doctrinal error BUT many would fuss if we had a meeting to change the color of the carpets in the sanctuary!

1. Whole denominations have been formed by what type of music is played in the sanctuary

2. Instead of praying for unity in the Church, we often seek ways to band together and split up and it is almost never for a good reason!

d. Paul could foresee the danger in allowing the dispute between Euodia and Syntyche to go unchecked

i. So he encouraged them “to be of the same mind in the Lord”

ii. Notice he doesn’t say “be of the same mind about your disagreement”

1. And why not? Because they were obviously arguing over something that didn’t matter!

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