Philippians 1:12-18 It Doesn’t Matter Last week, we looked into the first chapter of Philippians. I told you as I began the message, that I was not sure how far I would preach into the text or even how I would preach it—and I honestly did not. I also told you the reason why. The reason was that there was so much powerful truth contained in the text. Tonight, I would like for us to look at that selection of text again. This whole chapter could be a single, three point sermon for a preacher who knew how to say less. I. \\#3-6\\ How Paul Prayed: A. \\#3\\ Paul prayed with a thankful heart. B. \\#4\\ Paul prayed with a joyful heart. C. \\#6\\ Paul prayed with confidence. II. \\#7-11\\ What Paul Prayed for: A. \\#9\\ That their love would abound more and more. B. \\#10\\ That they would approve the excellent things. C. That they would be pure and without offense. III. \\#12-30\\ What Paul wanted them to understand: Phi 1:12 But I would ye should understand… Remember Paul was in prison when he wrote this epistle. For some, then just like today, that would bring some harsh criticism. Paul wanted the people to know some things about him. This is one of those sections where Paul reveals his heart to those to whom he preached. I. \\#12-18\\ It doesn’t matter what happens to him, the gospel will be furthered. Phi 1:12 But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel; A. Paul explained how that was happening in his current situation. 1. \\#14\\ Because of his bonds (chains), some had been emboldened to speak for Christ. Phi 1:14 And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. 2. \\#15-16\\ On the other hand, some were mocking Paul for his arrest. Phil 1:15 Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: 16 The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: a. These folk were saying things like, "That Paul. He got what he deserved. Preaching that Jesus was the Christ; that He died for sins; that He arose on the third day!" b. They meant these things to mock Paul. 3. \\#18\\ However, either way, they were still telling others about Jesus! Phil 1:18 What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice. 4. So Paul did not care that he was arrested or that some mocked him. 5. He only cared that whatever happened to him, somehow the gospel must be shared. B. Two things: 1. Not everyone could look on a situation like that. a. Paul was obviously looking on the bright side of a dark situation. b. Someone (Brother Gaston) told me today, "If you give some people a gold brick, their response would be, ‘It doesn’t glisten very much.’" c. Some people have the ability to look at all the eternal blessings of God and find a negative, while others can look at all of the attacks of the devil and see the positive. d. Paul was the latter. 2. Not every has a name so closely linked to Jesus that such a situation would be true. a. Paul had lived such a life, that he knew if people talked about him, they would have to talk about his Jesus too. b. And not everyone does that either. c. Question: What do people think of when they hear your name? (1) I’m afraid that I need to do better in associating myself with Jesus. (2) When my name is spoken, some probably think legalist or dictator. (3) Some more graciously may think of preacher or pastor. (4) Some may think of a good man. (5) I would appreciate being thought of as a godly man, a Scriptural man. d. But Paul had lived such a life that he knew when his name was spoken—even by those who hated him—they would also think of the name Jesus and His death, burial, and resurrection. II. It didn’t matter what happened to him, Paul would live for Jesus. Phil 1:21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. A. Paul went on to explain what that meant: Phil 1:22 But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not. 23 For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: 24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you. 1. Paul did not know for certain what was going to happen to him. 2. Neither did it matter all that much for whether he lived or whether he died, he would do it in a way that would bring honor and glory to Jesus. B. Paul was like most of us. 1. Because he knew that staying on this plane would allow him to help others, he kind of wanted to stay. 2. But he also knew that if God took him, there would be something in heaven he would do to bring glory to Jesus. C. Some important truths: 1. As long as you are here, God has something for you to do. 2. When God calls you home, your part in that task with be finished. a. Maybe the task will be finished. b. If not, God has someone else who is to finish it. 3. When you get home, you will get a new assignment. III. \\#27-30\\ It didn’t matter what happens to him, Paul’s heart was for his people. A. He was not concerned about life, about being in bonds, or even what other people thought about him being in bonds. B. He cared about people, especially to whom he ministered. Phil 1:27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel; C. Notice what Paul desired for the people. 1. \\#27\\ He wanted to hear that they stood fast (firm, strong, secure) in the Lord. 2. He desired that they have one mind. That would be the mind of Jesus. a. In four different epistles, Paul challenged the believers to have either one mind or the same mind. b. In the book of Philippians, he issued that challenged four different times. 3. He desired that they strive for the faith of the gospel. 4. \\#28\\ He desired that they not be frightened. Phil 1:28 And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God. 5. \\#29\\ He desired that they would suffer well for Jesus. Phil 1:29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake; 6. \\#30\\ He desired that they would see "this conflict" as he saw it. Phil 1:30 Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me. a. What conflict? The one to live or die \\#23\\. b. It is not just important that we live well for Jesus. c. It is equally important that we die well for Jesus. d. One day you may find yourself in a situation that you do not like and do not understand. You may ask, "God, why did you put me here? Why don’t you just take me on home?" e. On that day, remember this passage. (a) As long as there is life, God has a purpose. (b) We must not let our limited sight and understanding undermine that purpose. (c) Life like Jesus every day and when it is time, pray God will give the grace to die like Jesus. These were the things that Paul desired his church members understand about him. I pray that I will have the mind of Paul and that you will have the mind of the Philippians.
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