Joyfully Partnered in the Gospel
July 16, 2023 / Ben Wishall
Icon Elder Ben Wishall kicks off an eight week series in Philippians. The book of Philippians is structured like a mountain, and chapter one is the ascent of the book. It is filled with words of encouragement as we sojourn in the Christian life. This week we journey through Philippians 1:1-18.
- Paul wrote from prison in Rome, about ten years after his first trip through Philippi (Acts 16:6-40).
- Paul was filled with joy every time he remembered the Philippian church and prayed for them, because they were “partnered in the Gospel.”
- The Greek word for partnership was commonly used to describe a professional/business partnership, where two or more parties shared a significant investment in, and commitment to, a common bond.
- Paul was all in for Jesus, and for him to have a group of Christians that truly understood that, that were like-minded in their pursuit of Jesus, was a source of great joy for him.
COMMUNITY GROUP DISCUSSION:
- Who in your life do you thank God for every time you pray for them? How has that person impacted you in such a significant way, that it brings you joy to just think about that relationship?
- In verse 6 we read, “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” What do you think that verse means? How does this promise of God, to finish what he started in you, make you feel?
- In verse 7 Paul said that the Philippians were “partakers with me of grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel.” How is Paul’s imprisonment in Rome, and the Philippian Christian’s imprisonment and persecution, God’s grace towards them?
- In verses 9-11 Paul tells the Philippians how he is praying for them, that their love will abound more and more. 1 John 5:3 tells us that the evidence of our love for God is obedience to him. Where in your life do you struggle to “approve what is excellent” and find yourself compromising what you know God wants you to obey? What would it look like for you to be “filled with the fruit of righteousness” in your life right now?