All churches are made of people who do not always agree on everything. Founded by the father of Alexander the Great, Philip of Macedon, the Phillippian church was no different.
Paul reminds his readers of his profound love and longing for them, describing the Philippians as his “crown and joy”. He then invites them to stand as such in the Lord, as jewels worthy of God’s blessings and more importantly, as joyful servants of God and each other.
“1 Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends!” (Philippians 4: 1)
As Paul concludes his letter to the Philippians he now addresses an issue between two members of the church at Phillippi.
“2 I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to agree with each other in the Lord.” (Philippians 4:2)
It is unclear how Euodia and Syntyche disagreed however the importance of the dispute and its impact on the Phillippian church was significant enough for Paul to write about it, calling on both women to find a peaceful meeting point.
It is believed Paul then addresses Silas, the apostle’s yokefellow who had endured through challenges along side Paul, calling on him to act as peacemaker so to resolve the rift between Euodia and Syntyche as the gospel is advanced.
“3 Yes, and I ask you, loyal yokefellow, help these women who have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.” (Philippians 4:3)
Clement, one of the laborers of Christ is believed to have been the same Clement who later become bishop in Rome.
Inviting the Philippians to rejoice in the Lord, Paul calls on his audience to be obvious in gentleness as the return of the Lord approaches.
“4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.” (Philippians 4:4-5)
Then Paul addresses an issue for all Christians to abide by when he writes about anxiety. Here the apostle clearly calls on believers to trust in the Lord and set anxiety aside specially when we find ourselves troubled or distracted by the things of this world.
“6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
Through prayer, praise and thanksgiving we must seek God’s peace through the love of Jesus Christ.
“7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)
Paul then reminds the Philippians of their duties in Christ, to be true, noble, pure and admirable. He also calls on us to fill our hearts and minds with things that are worthy of praise.
“8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8)
While steering clear from distractions is imperative it is insufficient as Paul indicates we are to put all we have learned into practice as we push forward to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” (Philippians 4:9)
Are you pushing the gospel forward, finding yourself closer to heaven each day as you put Paul’s teaching into practice?
Through God’s magnificence and peace we are called to love and provoke one another in Christ. Paul’s instructions are true today just as they were in the early church, we must use this scripture in our lives, as a testimony of our love for Jesus. Let’s pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Paul,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre