Today’s bible reading is a letter from Paul and Timothy to God’s people in Philippi, to their leaders and deacons.
Paul thanked and appreciated the Philippians for their continued help and support in spreading the good news by preaching Christ, whilst assuring them of his genuine love for them.
He prayed that their love would grow and encouraged them to ensure their love is based on knowledge and understanding, as this will fill them with the fruit of right living and equally please the Lord.
Paul’s letter included how he was imprisoned and his sufferings. He however communicated how he added value to the kingdom of God, pointing out that it has emboldened some believers to preach the gospel without fear.
Whilst some preach the gospel boldly to propagate the gospel, others do so to stir up trouble for Paul, who does not mind their motive but rejoices that Christ is preached.
His desire is that Christ is preached and magnified.
Our purpose should be to bring glory to the name of the Lord. Spreading the good news of salvation by propagating the gospel pleases the Lord.
A lifestyle that emulates who Christ is could be a more effective message to some other than words.
We should however endeavor that our words and actions align on a daily basis to propagate the Gospel.
My life will be the message that draws people to Christ in Jesus Name.
Reading – PHILIPPIANS 1:1-20
1 Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus,
To all God’s holy people in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons[a]:
2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
3 I thank my God every time I remember you. 4 In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, 6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
7 It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chainsor defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me. 8 God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.
9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Paul’s Chains Advance the Gospel
12 Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters,[b] that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. 13 As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard[c] and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. 14 And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.
15 It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16 The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17 The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. 18 But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.
Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19 for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance.[d] 20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.
- Philippians 1:1 The word deacons refers here to Christians designated to serve with the overseers/elders of the church in a variety of ways; similarly in Romans 16:1 and 1 Tim. 3:8,12.
- Philippians 1:12 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in verse 14; and in 3:1, 13, 17; 4:1, 8, 21.
- Philippians 1:13 Or whole palace
- Philippians 1:19 Or vindication; or salvation