Philippians 1:3-12 – American Standard Version – ” 3 I thank my God upon all my remembrance of you, 4 always in every supplication of mine on behalf of you all making my supplication with joy, 5 for your fellowship in furtherance of the gospel from the first day until now; 6 being confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ: 7 even as it is right for me to be thus minded on behalf of you all, because I have you in my heart, inasmuch as, both in my bonds and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers with me of grace. 8 For God is my witness, how I long after you all in the tender mercies of Christ Jesus. 9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and all discernment; 10 so that ye may approve the things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and void of offense unto the day of Christ; 11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are through Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God. 12 Now I would have you know, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the progress of the gospel;”
Word by Seth Martin,
Background information: Paul is writing to the church of Philippi, while he is in prison after confessing that he was with Jesus Christ. It was illegal to be with Jesus Christ, during this time. The Philippian church had sent the imprisoned Paul a gift by a messenger named Epaphroditus. When Epaphroditus fell ill while performing his duties, Paul decided to send him back to Philippi and asked that the church receive him with joy and hold him in high regard. Paul writes this letter to them, thanking them for their gifts. The church was having unity issues, and even though Paul did not necessary agree with their problems, he still wrote this letter in a joyful manner. Paul tells the church of Philippi that even though they are having these issues, Paul is praying for them, not because he was obligated, but because he wanted to.
Verse 3: Paul still thanks God for the Church of Philippi, even though he disagrees with their issues. We (as Christians) need to be like Paul, and thank God for people even when you disagree with them.
Verse 4: Every time you think about your peers, you should pray for them. Paul did it because he wanted to.
Verse 5-6: Even when we do disagree, Paul was confident that God is working on you ( and your issues). No matter what we do, we’re confident God is still working on you. That’s the good news! Even your “enemies,” God is working on them! It is not your job to try and fix them. God’s work!
Verse 7-8: Why was Paul doing all this? He was doing this because he knows what it is like to be going through something. Sometimes we forget that we go through some things as Christians. Think about all of our sins. We all sin differently , and that create division. We all suffer form the same sickness (sin), but have different symptoms. At the end of the day sin = sin. Judging others divides us as Christians.
Verse 12: Paul suggest that going to jail has furthered God’s Kingdom. It was good going to jail. Sometimes we are going through things that do not feel good, but are good for God. Other times, the situation is not good for you personally, but the truth is that some things that are terrible happen to make other people better. For example, you are going through a struggle that required you to trust God, regardless, may help somebody else that you don’t even know is watching trust God.