verses for this week: 1
John 1:9 If we confess
our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to
cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
began our study in Philippians last week, and saw Paul accepting his
position there in prison with total calm.
At the end of the chapter, he spoke of how it would be great
gain for him to depart this life and to go to be with Christ, but he
was willing to live for the church’s benefit if that was God’s
desire. But he wanted
to honor God with either his life or his death.
In Chapter 2, we are given the ultimate example of humility
which is of course Jesus Christ.
I. The Exhortation to Unity and Meekness
1If there be
therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any
fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, 2Fulfil
ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one
accord, of one mind.
If we will
seriously take these verses to heart and follow the example that
Jesus set before us, I know we will be unified as a church. When we mimic the life of Jesus we don’t worry about
self, but look to the benefit of others.
Selfishness is of the world, and should not be known among
We see five
things in these first 2 verses.
Consolation in Christ
Fellowship of the Spirit
and mercies (remember in last week’s study how this referenced the
most inner of the feelings... the feelings from the heart)
Christians should be known as people of joy.
Look at all that we have.
Peace and happiness today, and a promise of tomorrow as heirs
with Jesus Christ.
speaks of how we should all have the same mind (the mind of Christ)
and live in unity of love.
We should all speak the same thing and have the same beliefs
in the doctrines laid down in God’s Word.
All of the division among Christian groups today was never
meant to be. But
when we talk of unity, we are not talking about coming to gather
with a small base of common beliefs and everyone having a dozen
different beliefs of doctrine.
God wants us to all agree and be of one mind, and that should
be settled by scripture.
When doctrines do not align with all of God’s Word, false
teaching is being done.
3Let nothing be
done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each
esteem other better than themselves. 4Look not every man
on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
not serve God to gain fame.
Ministries with a man’s name (other than Jesus Christ)
should always be carefully examined.
Our goal should be to do whatever we can to uplift Jesus
Christ. As John
the Baptist, a man that Jesus called the greatest that had ever been
born of woman, said, “I must decrease that he may increase.”
John 3:27 John answered
and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from
John 3:28 Ye yourselves
bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am
sent before him.
John 3:29 He that hath
the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which
standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the
bridegroom's voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.
John 3:30 He must
increase, but I must decrease.
John 3:31 He that cometh
from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and
speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.
John 3:32 And what he
hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his
John 3:33 He that hath
received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true.
John 3:34 For he whom
God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the
Spirit by measure unto him.
John 3:35 The Father
loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.
through strife and vain glory do not honor God.
When we go forth in God’s work, we need to be sure we are
going forth in the power of God’s Spirit.
When young David faced Goliath, he told him that he wasn’t
coming with the power of spear and shield, but was coming in the
power of the Holy God of Israel.
1 Sam 17:45 Then said
David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a
spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD
of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.
1 Sam 17:46 This day
will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee,
and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the
host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to
the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there
is a God in Israel.
17:47 And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not
with sword and spear: for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give
you into our hands.
Galatians 5:26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one
another, envying one another.
James 3:14 But if ye
have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie
not against the truth.
James 3:15 This wisdom
descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.
James 3:16 For where
envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.
James 3:17 But the
wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and
easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without
partiality, and without hypocrisy.
James 3:18 And the fruit
of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.
4 speaks of how we are to esteem others better than ourselves.
Real service for Christ will take our eyes off of self and
give real concern for the needs of others.
1 Corinthians 10:33
Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit,
but the profit of many, that they may be saved.
II. The Self
Humbling Example of Christ
5Let this mind
be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6Who, being in
the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7But
made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a
servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8And being
found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient
unto death, even the death of the cross.
Christian should have the mind which was in Jesus.
John 13:13 Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well;
for so I am. 14 If
I then, your Lord and
Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s
feet. 15 For I have given you an
example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
If you study
Christ’s life, you find a person who did not seek after things for
himself, but rather looked to honor the Heavenly Father.
Think of the humility this exemplified.
Here was the Son of God, one of the co-equal members of the
Holy Trinity, and he did not seek His own.
What an example of giving up the riches and glory that were
his and coming down and effectively emptying himself for the benefit
of sinful man. We
who do not deserve salvation, the sinful and ungodly, were given a
higher priority by Jesus than himself.
What an example that we should follow.
We can show this in so many small ways.
Let someone go first at a four way stop sign.
Buy a stranger a drink sometime.
There are many ways that we can do small things that will
glorify God and reach others with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Christ was co-equal with God, but rather than glorify
himself, he humbled himself and took on the nature of a servant.
If you want to be great in God’s sight, be a servant.
Mat 20:25 But Jesus
called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the
Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great
exercise authority upon them.
Mat 20:26 But it shall
not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him
be your minister;
Mat 20:27 And whosoever
will be chief among you, let him be your servant:
Mat 20:28 Even as the
Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to
give his life a ransom for many.
important things are pointed out in these verses:
Christ made Himself of no reputation.
Christ took upon Himself the form of a servant
He was made in the likeness of man.
He humbled Himself... ultimately to the cross of Calvary for
you and I.
He was obedient unto death.
James 4:10 Humble
yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
Hebrews 10:7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is
written of me,) to do thy will, O God.
The Exaltation of Jesus
also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above
every name: 10That at the name of Jesus every knee should
bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the
earth; 11And that every tongue should confess that Jesus
Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
There is a
day coming when EVERY tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord
… and this to the glory of the Father.
God exalted Christ with a name that is above every name.
Jesus… there is something about that name as the song says.
What a lovely name, the name of Jesus.
Is the name
exalted, or is it the person of Jesus.
I think the name is special, but Jesus Himself is the one God
has exalted. His name
“Jesus” was given at his incarnation, and it will be the name
when He is exalted.
she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for
he shall save his people from their sins.
Revelation, it says that Jesus is a name above every name.
he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF
KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
is meant about every knee will bow and every tongue confess that
Jesus is Lord and Savior.
I think it means just what it says.
All knees, whether they are human beings or angels, will bow
before the Greatest of all time and acknowledge with their tongue
that this is the Son of God. This
will happen at the Great White Throne Judgment of God, a very sad
day for the lost of all time.
McGee commented this on the name of Jesus.
is the first step up:
“God also hath highly exalted him.” The supreme purpose of God
the Father in this universe today is that Jesus Christ be glorified
in the universe which He created and that He be glorified on the
earth where man dwells, where man rebelled against God.
thing that makes this little earth significant and important is the
death of Christ down here—nothing else. Astronomers tell us that
we are a little speck in space, and if our little world were to be
blotted out, it wouldn’t make any difference to the universe. And
that is absolutely true. Someone else has said that man is a
“disease on the epidermis of a minor planet.” That is what we
are! The thing that has lent dignity to man and has caused him to
look up into the heavens and sing the doxology is the fact that
Jesus Christ came to this earth and died on the cross for him.
“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him.”
Salvation in Us
12Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always
obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence,
work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13For
it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good
exhortation is given to Christians, and is given to work out our
salvation. Before you
misunderstand what is being said, remember you have to have
something before you can work it out.
We don’t work for God in order to obtain or keep our
salvation. We work
because of what God has done for us in saving us to give honor and
glory to Him. A
good example would be a farmer working in his cornfield.
He couldn’t work out in that cornfield if he did not have
it before he went to work, could he?
We are given salvation as a free gift from God.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:
it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
whole letter was written by Paul to exhort these Christians to a
life of sanctification. God
wants us to be set apart for his service.
When we cultivate our lives for God, we will live a life that
is far different from the world.
In verse 13, Paul makes it clear that it is God that works in
us. It truly is not of
14Do all things
without murmurings and disputings: 15That ye may be
blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the
midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as
lights in the world; 16Holding forth the word of life;
that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in
vain, neither laboured in vain..
that he says to do all things without murmurings or disputings.
An obedient Christian will be one seeking ways to solve
problems, not one creating problems. If we work out our salvation, we see some of the
benefits. We will be
blameless and harmless in the midst of a wicked nation.
We will be blameless, harmless, and without blemish.
We are to the seen as lights to the world that they may see
Jesus living in us. Paul
wanted to be among those who had held forth the word of life to
others and found that he had not run nor labored in vain.
Nothing that we ever do, not the smallest of things done for
the honor of God will fail to be rewarded.
10:42 And whosoever
shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold
water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he
shall in no wise lose his reward.
17Yea, and if I
be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and
rejoice with you all.
was more than willing to die if God desired him to die.
“Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of
your faith, I joy.” He
was saying if he was martyred for the cause of Jesus, his blood
would represent the outpoured wine, or drink-offering, completing
their spiritual meal offering.
There were many various offerings (such as the
drink-offering) given in the Old Testament, and many of these were
used as examples of how our sacrifices might be considered in
service to the Lord. The
sacrifice would then be a joint one, their part representing the
meal, oil, and incense, and his part the pouring out of the wine.
And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he talked with him,
even a pillar of stone: and he poured a drink offering thereon, and
he poured oil thereon.
Henrys Commentary on the New Testament
apostle not only ran and laboured for them with satisfaction, but
shows that he was ready to suffer for their good (v. 17): Yea,
and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I
joy and rejoice with you all. He could reckon himself happy if
he could promote the honour of Christ, the edification of the
church, and the welfare of the souls of men; though it were not only
by hazarding, but by laying down, his life: he could willingly be a
sacrifice at their altars, to serve the faith of God’s elect.
Could Paul think it worth while to shed his blood for the service of
the church, and shall we think it much to take a little pains? Is
not that worth our labour which he thought worth his life? If
I be offered, or poured
out as the wine of the drink-offerings,
spendomai. 2 Tim. 4:6, I
am now ready to be offered. He could rejoice to seal his
doctrine with his blood (v. 18): For the same cause also do you joy and rejoice with me. It is the
will of God that good Christians should be much in rejoicing; and
those who are
happy in good ministers have a great deal of reason to joy and
rejoice with them. If the minister loves the people, and is willing
to spend and be spent for their welfare, the people have reason to
love the minister and to joy
and rejoice with him.
18For the same
cause also do ye joy, and rejoice with me. 19But I trust
in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also
may be of good comfort, when I know your state. 20For I
have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state. 21For
all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s. 22But
ye know the proof of him, that, as a son with the father, he hath
served with me in the gospel. 23Him therefore I hope to
send presently, so soon as I shall see how it will go with me. 24But
I trust in the Lord that I also myself shall come shortly.
explains that his early intentions were to send young Timothy to
them. He knew
Timothy was like minded like he was, but he says later that he hoped
to come himself. Paul sent Epaphroditus with the letter to the
church there in Philippi.
25Yet I supposed
it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion
in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that
ministered to my wants. 26For he longed after you all,
and was full of heaviness, because that ye had heard that he had
been sick. 27For indeed he was sick nigh unto death: but
God had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, lest I
should have sorrow upon sorrow. 28I sent him therefore
the more carefully, that, when ye see him again, ye may rejoice, and
that I may be the less sorrowful. 29Receive him therefore
in the Lord with all gladness; and hold such in reputation: 30Because
for the work of Christ he was nigh unto death, not regarding his
life, to supply your lack of service toward me.
to J. Vernon McGee’s commentary, Epaprhoditus was the pastor of
the church there in Philippi. I
searched in all my other commentaries and found no one mentioning
this, so I am not sure if this is factual.
What I do know about the man was that he was a real soldier
for the Lord, and had stood by and been a real friend and encourager
It is great when we work together in the work of the
Lord and have the same mind.
Barnes Notes on the New Testament
hold such in
honor such. This is a high commendation of Epaphroditus, and, at the
same time, it enjoins an important duty in regard to the proper
treatment of those who sustain such a character. It is
a Christian duty to honor those who ought to be honored, to respect
the virtuous and the pious, and especially to honor those who evince
fidelity in the work of the Lord.
Note some of the things mentioned in Malachi about
2:1And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you. 2 If ye will
not hear, and if ye will not lay it to heart, to give glory unto my
name, saith the LORD of hosts, I will even send a curse upon you,
and I will curse your blessings: yea, I have cursed them already,
because ye do not lay it to heart. 3 Behold, I will corrupt your
seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn
feasts; and one shall take you away with it.
4 And ye shall know that I have sent this commandment unto
you, that my covenant might be with Levi, saith the LORD of hosts. 5
My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him
for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name.
6 The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in
his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many
away from iniquity. 7 For the priest’s lips should keep knowledge,
and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger
of the LORD of hosts.
Internet Bible Studies are prepared and
distributed free of charge. The
lessons may not be sold without consent.
If you have questions or wish to discuss the lessons, or
possibly need help in finding Jesus Christ as your Personal Lord and
Savior, contact David Parham at 940-322-4343.
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.