Phil. 2:12-16 A CALL TO NEW TESTAMENT CHRISTIANITY
Intro: Ill. Paul has spend some time encouraging the Philippian church
to be humble and submissive to the Father and to the Lord Jesus. Paul even
appeals to the supreme example of humility, Jesus Himself. In these
verses, there is a call given to this young church to carry our the
instructions they have been given and to do the Lords work in true
humility. This is a message that we all need to take to heart tonight. I
would like to spend a few minutes looking at these verses and talking to
you about Pauls Call To New Testament Christianity.
I. v. 12 A CHALLENGE (Work Out)
A. Not for salvation - Eph. 2:8-9. These people were already saved -
B. Work Out - Literally - To bring to the fullest completion.
- Used of mining - To get every ounce ore out of a mine.
- Used of farming - To work he land to achieve the greatest possible
C. The Challenge is two-fold:
1. To make your Christian life all it can be for God. (Ill. Talents -
2. To be yourself - God never called you to be a cheap imitation of any one
else. We are reflect Christ - Ill. Moon and sun! (Ill. You can display a reflection
that no one else can duplicate.)
D. Ill. Fear and Trembling - Why?
- His business is serious business - Souls are at stake!
- We are entering an unknown - Ill. No one knows how much following Jesus
is going to cost them, or where it will lead - Ill. Paul - 2 Cor. 11:23-29.
(Ill. However, we do have His promise - Luke 18L28-30.
3. We will have to face God and give an account of our lives - 2 Cor. 5:10;
Rom. 14:12; (Ill. 1 Cor. 3:10-15)
II. v.13 A COMPANION
A. Work in v. 12 means to fully complete. Here, the word means to energize.
This verse means that God gives us the energy to do His will. (Ill. We do not
have to do it alone!)
B. Gods work in us is 2-fold.
1. To Will - God reveals His will unto us and coaxes us into adopting
His will as our own.
2. To Do - Not only are energized to know His will, but we are empowered
to do His will as well. (Ill. The Holy Spirit is the key - John 14:6) (Ill.
God works in, so the we can work out!)
C. God doesnt just save us and leave us to sort out His will. He moves
in our lives and brings us into His work, (Ill. Absolutely imperative to be
Spirit-filled - Eph. 5:18)
III. v. 14 A COMMAND
A. We are to carry out Gods work and will in an atmosphere empty
1. Murmurings - Secret disputes; displeasure and complaining. This is
carried out more privately than publicly!
2. Disputings - Hesitation and doubt. This refers to doubting Gods
promises and hesitating at His commands.
B. Our lives are to be emptied of these symptoms both privately and
IV. v.15-16 SOME CONSEQUENCES
A. When we dovetail with Gods ideal for Christianity, there will be some
positive consequences in our lives.
B. We Will Stand Out - The true Christian is and will ever be different
and distinct from the world. We will be seen as:
- Blameless - No one can point a finger at us.
- Harmless - Lit. unmixed Not diluted by the world, but
full strength for the Lord! (Ill. Harmless to the Kingdom are those around
3. Without Rebuke - faultless
4. This type of life stands in stark contrast to the standard of the world.
Ill. crooked - bent (Ill. Even plants grow toward the sun!) Ill.
Perverse - To oppose, to turn against and plot against the truth.
This is the world and we are to be different!
C. We Will Shine Out - (Ill. A light in the darkness!) When we are in
line with God, we are spotlights in a dark world! (Ill. We are literally living
out the Word of God - v. 16. Ill. 2 Cor. 3:2; Ill. Matt. 5:14-16
Conc: Hows YOUR light burning?