Mark J. CongrovePastor, Bethel Baptist church
facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/mjcongrove
Begin forwarded message:
From: “Mark Congrove, Pastor, Bethel Baptist Church” <mjvicarc52>
Date: September 1, 2012 11:40:04 PM EDT
Subject: Sermon 9.2.12 Philippians 1:1-8
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Bethel Baptist Church Philippians 1:1-8
One of the more interesting take away’s from any study of the Scriptures is the importance God places on the relational components of the Christian faith. Crack open the pages of the Bible and behold– God desires a relationship with his creatures, and while he needs nothing from us uprights, He nevertheless pursues us for the purpose of His own glory.
- Genesis 1: He has created us in His own image and deals with us in ways consistence with His own person:
- God so operates with the Patriarchs: relationally
- He receives a king with whom He can build a relationship with, deposed him and chooses another who in fact shares his heart
- He talks openly with the prophets, under trees, privately and in great confrontations
- He becomes Incarnate so His nature might be understood and appropriated into the human heart.
- He sends the Spirit of the godhead into the lives of those who would come after and in so doing builds His church by calling it out from a world that’s lost it’s way.
The gospel message was meant to be imbibed and savored, not merely sipped. GK Chesterton… “Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried.”
Gilbert K. Chesterton
I. Relationships with Christ
As believers, Paul and Timothy now possessed the same nature. They were servants by nature. As touching doulos slaves, they were now bound to another.
- The power of the bond: Where once Paul had been bound to slavery by his physical birth, he was now bound to Christ by his spiritual birth. A constraining love.
- The nature of the bond: where the relationship could only be broken by death, Paul’s relationship with Christ was broken by his identification with Christ’s death.
- The duration of the bond: With Christ never to die again, Paul’s relationship with Christ is secure for eternity.
- The extent of the bond: where once Paul’s life had been swallowed alive in the will of Satan, Paul’s will is swallowed up in the all encompassing will of God. Kenneth Wuest writes, ” it refers to one who serves another even to the disregard of his own interests.” (pg. 27)… A certain reckless abandon. ( watching the young men approach the ramps on skateboards… Balancing the weight of a full grown man on 4 little wheels, seems problematic at best.
II. Relationships with co-workers A better working relationship with my co-workers requires a better understanding of them. Getting a better understanding of what it means to work with a saint: one set apart to operate within a specific environment:
Not some dead Christian martyr but a set apart one to work in the new area called the Christian life… A new area controlled exclusively by the leadership of Christ.
Who they are? Who are the people for Paul cares so much? Paul’s concern is not triggered by the regularity of his memories but by the identity of this people. The Philippians are the reason for Paul’s thanksgiving! Every= whole. Paul thanks God because of his whole remembrance of them. No regrets. Imagine living your life of service to Christ in a realm where you had no regrets of your dealings with the brethren.
How they Interacted: Fellowship: no potluck in mind here but joint participation! Joint participation in a common interest— common compulsion= the progress of the gospel. In fact, Paul’s world was a world filled with barriers;
- barriers between Jews and Gentiles;
- barriers between Romans and Greeks;
- and barriers between free people and slaves.
It is the fellowship one with another