Tag Archives: Timeless Truth

Second Chance: Philippians 2

√ Re·new·al: the replacing or repair of something that is worn out, run-down, or broken

Philippians 2 [NIV]
– 1 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.  5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus…

– 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

– 14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God 15 without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life. 

§§§

Paul has written the perfect word picture of God’s “good purpose” for us.  This portion of his story begins with the encouragement of renewal and ends with the promise of results.  Renewal and results are the bookends that span the timeless truth of v13.

Renewal is God reaching out to us with “encouragement from being united with Christ,” the “comfort from his love” and the “common sharing in the Spirit with “tenderness and compassion.”

“It is God who works in you to will and to act
in order to fulfill his good purpose.”

Results are God reaching into us with the fulfillment of His “good purpose.” He continues to work through our renewal to create in us the desire “to will and to act” with “the same mindset as Christ Jesus… “as [we] hold firmly to the word of life.”

Speak Up!

II Corinthians 4:13 It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.”  Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak,
AND
Genesis 11: 6 The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.”

The II Corinthians passage led me to a deliberate search for what the Bible had to say about the words “spoken” and “speak” and that’s how I arrived at Genesis 11.  Genesis 11 is the story of Babel where God chose to confuse their words to deal with their desire for power.  God recognized there was such a powerful relationship between desire and words that “nothing they plan to do will be impossible.”  The story reads as if it’s only an act of suppression about words.  I think it’s more a lesson about the focus of desire.

When our focus as followers of Jesus Christ is our desire to raise our voices and plead with God to reveal his power contained in our words everything changes.  In the midst of all the confusing babel around us today we need to let our desire be God’s power.  That desire will give new power to our words and reveal the timeless truth of that same phrase “then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them.” Speak up!