verses for this week: 1 Pet 4:7 But
the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch
chapter 3, Paul told of how he could boast of the flesh if anyone
could, but he did not. He
wanted to be known as a person who was saved by the blood of Jesus
Christ, and know about Jesus’ resurrection, and to grow in the
knowledge and fellowship of His sufferings.
Paul Exhorts Church to Unity and Joy
Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy
and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved. 2 I beseech
Euodias, and beseech Syntyche, that they be of the same mind in the
Lord. 3 And I intreat thee also, true yokefellow, help those women
which laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with
other my fellowlabourers, whose names are in the book of life.
these first three verses, it seems logical to conclude that this
church may not have been perfectly joined together in the same mind. Perhaps this is one of the greatest problems facing the New
Testament churches today.
But God’s desire is for us to be like-minded in all things. Paul calls these at Philippi “My Brethren” and
“My Joy and Crown”. And
as always, he exhorts them to stand fast in the Lord.
God needs faithful men, women, and young people to take a
stand on ‘thus saith the Lord’ and to not be moved away by false
teachings and doctrines of evil.
And we can be if we do not study and grow in the scriptures
daily. Our minds
focus on something all through the day.
If we are walking in the Spirit, I think we will be thinking
of the Holy Scriptures. Young
Timothy was a man who had known the scriptures from a child.
2 Tim 3:14 But continue
thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of,
knowing of whom thou hast learned them;
2 Tim 3:15 And that from
a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make
thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
2 Tim 3:16 All scripture
is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for
reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2 Tim 3:17 That the man
of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
2 Tim 4:1 I charge thee
therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the
quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;
2 Tim 4:2 Preach the
word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort
with all longsuffering and doctrine.
Eph 5:19 Speaking to
yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and
making melody in your heart to the Lord;
Eph 5:20 Giving thanks
always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our
Lord Jesus Christ;
Eph 5:21 Submitting
yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
verse 2, Paul speaks of Euodias and Syntyche who could not pull
together. We should all
be able to work for God in the same harness.
We are told to put on Christ and that His yoke is easy.
But it does mean we are to work and get the yoke on. Yokes went around the shoulders of the mule or horse
years ago to pull the plow or the wagon.
God wants us working in synchrony one with the other, and
when Jesus is the team member, He is the one carrying the heavy
load, not us. If
we are going to be successful as a church, we have to all be of the
same mind and not be afraid of work.
What can you do? There are many things that a church needs to function.
Probably being willing to go out and witness on visitation
might be our most important job that we can do.
But if all we do is greet visitors, visit the sick and the
elderly, or perhaps be a mentor to a young person, these are all
things that honor and glorify the Lord.
I heard a radio program yesterday where the guy was talking
about going into the bakery and the people giving you a bite of
cheese cake for free. You
didn’t come in there to buy a cheese cake probably, and they
don’t make a living giving away cheese cake.
But they do that because once you taste it, you many times go
home with a cheese cake.
I’ve bought things at Sam’s Discount Store because they
gave me a sample for free.
The point is that if we can show a young person just a small
sampling of Christianity, that may be the spark needed to light that
flame to get them involved in the things of God.
And when they see the whole truth, they perhaps will accept
Jesus as their Savior and will be workers for God for all their
life. See how
just doing a small thing for God can return great things when we do
it God’s way. David
Jeremiah recently said that God gave him a thought about the verse
where Jesus taught the disciples that the widow who cast in her two
mites gave more than all the rich did.
Luke 21:2 And he saw
also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites.
Luke 21:3 And he said,
Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more
than they all:
Luke 21:4 For all these
have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she
of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.
years we have know she gave her all, but by her example being taught
through the years, how many have given more to the service of God by
her sacrifice. And
perhaps those giving because of her example could indirectly be
counted towards those two mites.
Interesting if it is accurate teaching.. Think of the
potential of the thousands upon thousands of dollars who may have
given because of her sacrificial life.
Our lives count and we affect MANY around us.
beseeched the church in Corinth to be of the same mind.
And there was a price to be paid when they did not do this.
3:1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but
as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. 2 I have fed you with
milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it,
neither yet now are ye able. 3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas
there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not
carnal, and walk as men?
4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of
Apollos; are ye not carnal? 5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos,
but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every
man? 6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7
So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that
watereth; but God that giveth the increase. 8 Now he that planteth
and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own
reward according to his own labour. 9 For we are labourers together
with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
4 Rejoice in
the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
we do, we should do it for the honor and glory of God.
In our example in these first verses, it appears that
Epaphroditus was the true yokefellow. He wanted the true believers who were willing to work
to help those women who had labored with Paul in spreading the
Gospel. This is
not inferring that they were preachers in the church, but they
helped Paul and most likely did have great testimonies and were not
ashamed to share what God had done for them.
1 Timothy 2:11
Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. 12 But I suffer
not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be
points out that these labourers had their name written in the book
of life. It is an
interesting study to determine when the name is written in the book
of life. But we must
have our name written there or there will be much bad befall us one
day. Only those
saved will enter into heaven.
Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead,
small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and
another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead
were judged out of those things which were written in the books,
according to their works. 13 And the sea gave up the dead which were
in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them:
and they were judged every man according to their works.
14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This
is the second death. 15 And whosoever was not found written in the
book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
Revelation 21:23 And the city had no
need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory
of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. 24 And the
nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and
the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. 25
And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall
be no night there. 26 And they shall bring the glory and honour of
the nations into it. 27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any
thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or
maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of
Only those who have their names written in the book
of life will have the privilege to enter into the new city of
The Peace of God
5 Let your
moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
6 Be careful
for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with
thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your
hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
are two important things that we need to learn from verse 5.
He says to let our ‘moderation’ be know to all men and
that “The Lord is at hand.’
Moderation means calmness, patience, and gentleness.
I think it speaks of living a life under control that is
Godly and not extravagant, and certainly within our means also.
Christians should be special people, and all look to God with
faith for our provisions. Our
lives should be such that Jesus is shown by our works.
Matthew 5:16 Let
your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works,
and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
Lord is at hand might point to his soon coming, but the greater
meaning is that His presence is with us at all times.
The Holy Spirit takes up His dwelling inside us when we are
saved, and we are never far from God.
He truly lives inside every believer.
tells us that the peace of God will keep our hearts. We truly should not worry about ANYTHING.
Worry is basically doubting God, and that is not what we
should do. By faith we
should expect the best from the Heavenly Father who loves us so
much. And if negative
things befall us, we need to accept this and know that God may be
using the trial to mold us into greater men and women of faith.
We don’t gain a lot unless we are put to the test.
Under fire, we can become a vessel mete for the Master’s
King James Study Bible said this about verses 5 and 6.
means “graciousness” or “sweet reasonableness.” The believer
who is at peace with his fellow Christian (v. 2) and who rejoices
always (v. 4) is indeed a gracious, reasonable person.
The Lord is at hand means two things. First, His return to earth
is near. His imminent coming as judge encourages the Christian to be
“gracious” unto all men, for He will judge the believer for all of his actions
toward all people, and will avenge all wrongs committed by others
against him. Second, the “Lord is at hand” spiritually. The
Lord’s being presently near should free the Christian from fear
and anxiety. Hence the command of verse 6.
4:6. Be careful
for nothing means “don’t worry about anything.” The Lord’s nearness (v. 5b)
leads Paul to forbid his readers from worrying. This is no summons
to irresponsibility or an invitation to dismiss legitimate concern.
The solution to undue anxiety is prayer
in every thing, “in any matter of life.” The way to be free
of anxiety is to be prayerful about everything. While God is eager
to hear our requests, they are to be accompanied
with thanksgiving. 
word careful in verse 6 speaks of not being anxious for things.
Rather, we should pray and give thanks unto the Lord.
James tells us to make our requests known unto God.
James 4:2 Ye lust, and have
not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and
war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
1 Peter 5:6
Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he
may exalt you in due time: 7 Casting all your care upon him; for he
careth for you.
is a difference in the “Peace of God” and “Peace with God.”
We have made peace with God by what Christ has done for us.
1:20 And, having made
peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things
unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or
things in heaven.
5:1 Therefore being
justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus
Peace of God comes over us and gives us comfort that this world has
never known, particularly when we are in tune with the Holy Spirit
and walking in God’s Will for our lives.
Col 3:15 And let the
peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in
one body; and be ye thankful.
Col 3:16 Let the word of
Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing
one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with
grace in your hearts to the Lord.
Col 3:17 And whatsoever
ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving
thanks to God and the Father by him.
Good Thinking gives the presence of the God of Peace
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are
honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure,
whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report;
if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these
things. 9 Those things,
which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me,
do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
are given some things here to think on that will help us to have
that peace of God that every believer so desires.
We are to think on things that are true.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am
the way, the truth, and
the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
John 8:32 And ye shall know the
truth, and the truth shall make you free. 33 They answered him, We
be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how
sayest thou, Ye shall
be made free? 34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto
committeth sin is the servant of sin. 35 And the servant abideth not
in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. 36 If the Son
therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.
should think on things that are honest, things that are just, pure,
lovely, and good. People
flock to hear the bad news, but we should be of a different mindset
and seek to think and seek good things.
If we follow the example Paul set, we will have peace that
God gives from His presence.
Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content
with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave
thee, nor forsake thee.
But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care
of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye
lacked opportunity. 11
Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in
whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 12 I
know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where
and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry,
both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through
Christ which strengtheneth me.
mentions 3 things that he had learned to be content with.
In verse 10, he speaks of being content with worldly
In verse 11, he speaks of being content with our present
condition and position.
In verse 12 he speaks of being content with every-day
surroundings and occasions.
It is easy
to say all of this, but to learn to really live like this takes
years of trust in the Heavenly Father and a lot of faith.
Paul had this. He
writes this from a prison cell and speaks of knowing how to be
abased. He told Paul
that ‘godliness with contentment’
brings great rewards to the Christian.
Timothy 6:6 But godliness
with contentment is great gain.
How can we
learn to be content like Paul?
We must trust God and believe verse 13.
It says we can do ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST.
Do we believe this or is it just a nice sounding verse. This verse is every where as true as John 3:16.
When we look to Jesus for power, and we trust in God’s
provision and sovereignty, there won’t be anything we can’t
accomplish within God’s Will for our lives.
I’ve mentioned the story about how that at the age of 11,
there was nothing more important to me than to have my own pony.
Probably every boy has that desire sometime in his childhood.
In Sunday School that week, the teacher had been teaching on
the fact that if we truly believed with the faith of a mustard seed,
we could literally move a mountain.
But we had to really believe.
So Sunday night, I got serious with God and prayed for that
pony. When it wasn’t
there on Monday morning, I got pretty upset.
But I wasn’t giving up.
So on Monday night I prayed again truly believing that I’d
have that pony on Tuesday morning.
As silly as this sounds, to me it was a big deal back then.
When no horse materialized on Tuesday, I had a real heart to
heart talk with my mother about why the bible was not true.
She carefully and lovingly pointed out that wanting a pony
might be important to me, but that might not be what God had in mind
as the best for my life.
And these verses about trusting and getting answers to our
prayers do involve doing the will of God.
Many times he does give us not only our needs, but many of
our wants. So I
kept praying, and on Saturday morning, my dad came in and told me
and my brother to get up and get ready to go to town. We went and picked out the most beautiful grey dappled
Shetland pony I ever saw with a crème colored mane.
I got to pick her out of about 50 ponies. That just shot my faith up unbelievably.
But as I got older, I added it all up that mom went to dad
and asked him to go and buy me that pony.
She died in
1997 and I never got to ask that question because deep down I
didn’t want to know the answer.
But last year (over 35 years later), I finally asked my dad
why he ever bought me that pony.
He said why do you ask?
I flat out told him I wanted to know if Mother put pressure
on him to buy me that horse cause he rarely bought us things in my
said she never said a word... it was all his idea.
That horse almost killed me, but boy was I glad to get it
when I could stay on it.
I tell you all that to tell you that God hears the prayers of
even a child, particularly when we look to him with total faith.
He may not always give us our pony, but sometimes he does. Paul knew that his strength came from one place, and that was
from Jesus Christ.
Then were there brought unto him little children, that he
should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked
But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not,
to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my
affliction. 15 Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning
of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church
communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye
only. 16 For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my
necessity. 17 Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that
may abound to your account.
communicated tow things with the church.
He told them of his sufferings, and he told of his physical
needs. We as a church should be very sensitive to the needs of
our missionaries and do our best to make special offerings when we
can when they have problems arise.
And you know from your own life, things come up sometimes
that we can barely deal with.
And many missionaries are truly living on the mission field
with meager support looking to God in faith.
All things are in the Father’s hand, and what a privilege
it is to be used to provide a need through the local church to help
that missionary. When
we give to help them through the church, all the honor and glory
goes to God.
18 But I have all, and abound: I am full,
having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you,
an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to
God. 19 But my God
shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by
20 Now unto God and our Father be glory
for ever and ever. Amen. 21 Salute every saint in Christ Jesus. The
brethren which are with me greet you. 22 All the saints salute you, chiefly they that are of Caesar’s household. 23 The grace
of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.
did not necessarily desire a gift, but the fruit that would abound
to the account. It
would be God that supply the need for both he and those in the
church of Philippi. All
of this would be according to the riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
When he says the saints salute you, he was not speaking of
Caesar’s immediate family, but of his slaves and servants.
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But the path of the just is as the shining light, that
shineth more and more unto the perfect day.
Practice Random Acts of Kindness.
Each act spreads, and many will be blessed.