Philippians 1:27-30 A Worthy Christian Life

by | Mar 24, 2023 | New Testament, Philippians

V. 27a: Only- connects Paul’s assurance of coming to them w/the fact that they needed his presence.
He was sure that God would allow him to be freed to go and minister to them.
However, they needed to do their part and live lives that were worthy of the gospel.
Paul said- “I am confident that I will come to help, but you do your part too.”
NOTE- Remember, Paul would have rather just go to Heaven.  (vs. 22-26) 

Conduct- Also translated “citizenship”.  (see 3:20) Citizens have rights, privileges, responsibilities.
They were to live as citizens of God’s Kingdom, in a manner worthy of that blessing.

Worthy- typical of, suited to, or in keeping with, having the weight of, of like value, corresponding
Example- “a performance worthy of a champion”.

NOTE- Paul wasn’t talking about making oneself worthy for salvation but living worthy of the gospel to which one had freely received.

Paul lists three things that were important for the Philippians at that moment.

I. Unity In Jesus V. 27

A. Oneness 

1. Stand fast- hold your ground, even when opposition is trying to move you

a. There was opposition, i.e. Rome, where Paul was imprisoned
b. There was opposition from the Jewish rulers.
c. There was, and always is, opposition from Satan himself.

2. One spirit- The disposition which influence and governs the soul.
3. One mind- (soul) the emotions, reasoning, the will.  Subject to being influenced.
4. Striving together- synathleō: syn- together; athleo- to engage in a contest.

a. Athletes (athleo) striving together to accomplish an agreed upon goal.
b. There were divisions in the church.  People striving against each other.

B. The Gospel Was Their Goal For Unity

1. The object of their unity was Jesus, & the message about Jesus.  He was the goal
2. Unity demands a common goal.  It is not enough to simply want to be unified.
3. The goal must be bigger than individual agendas.

a. Team sports demands a team mentality.  What is good for the team?
b. Marriage requires a commitment to God’s glory and kingdom.
c. Successful military victories require big picture thinking.

4. Individuals are not bigger than the goal.

a. Self centered athletes often find themselves traded, or w/o a team.
b. Selfish spouses can easily destroy a marriage.
c. Self centered soldiers will not make the needed sacrifices for victory.

5. Christians live lives worthy of the name of Christ only if they put Jesus first.

a. Self promoting Christians don’t live worthy Christian lives.
b. Self serving Christians don’t live worthy Christian lives.
c. Living for self will not produce a worthy Christian life.
d. You will need end up not looking much like a Christian.
e. And like Paul said, “…so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs…”
f. If you claim the name of Christ as yours, people will know whether your life is worthy of that claim, whether positive or negative.

II. Not Moved By Fear V. 28

A. Adversaries, Yes.  Terrified, No.

1. To be a Christian means that you will have opposition and adversaries.
2. Even if you are a lukewarm Christian, Satan will seek to keep you lukewarm
3. If you are making great effort to live for Jesus, people & Satan will oppose you.
4. We may have adversaries, but we must do our best to not be moved.  (v. 27)

B. What Standing Fast Produces

1. For the Adversary-proof of perdition, conviction of being wrong.
2. For the Christian- proof of salvation.  We have found our highest goal to live for.

III. Willing To Suffer For Jesus Vs. 29, 30

A. Suffering For A Cause

      1. Professional athletes are granted the privilege of playing at the highest level.
      2. They represent a team, an owner, a city, a league, and their teammates.
      3. Part of that privilege includes suffering, i.e., self discipline, travel, injuries, etc.
      4. They suffer privately, they suffer corporately, and they strive together for the goal.
      5. They must live and act in a way that brings honor to the team and sport.
      6. They said “yes” to that arrangement, and only a privileged few experience that

B. Suffering For Jesus

1. If you are a Christian, it is because Jesus died for you, and offered you forgiveness.
2. You are forgiven, and on your way to Heaven.
3. But you are called to live a life worthy of the Gospel, which includes suffering.
4. Only Christians are granted the privilege of suffering for Jesus.
5. Granted- Charizomai- to give graciously, from which we get charis- grace
6. Our suffering can bring glory to Jesus when it is known that we live for Him.
7. Inspires others to push thru lesser difficulties, like Paul’s imprisonment did. v. 14
8. The Christian who has the big picture mentality will consider suffering an honor, because of what and Who he is suffering for.
9. The athlete suffers for a league championship, or a world championship ring.
10. The Christian suffers for the Kingdom of God and gains eternal rewards.