Paul has one thing in mind, one motivation for his life, that in Philippians 1:20 “with all boldness, even now as always Christ will be exalted in my body”. There are those that are opposing the gospel, just as they opposed Jesus himself. We, as Paul did and as Jesus demonstrated, must humble ourselves and proclaim the truth of Christ’s resurrection wherever the Spirit of God leads us, even in the midst of “evil workers”. For us, he says in Philippians 3:1 “my brothers, rejoice in the Lord” and he says in Philippians 3:3 “we are the circumcision, the ones who worship by the Spirit of God and boast in Christ Jesus”.
Christ is Proclaimed
There have been many disputes in the Church about how to present the gospel and who is qualified to preach and by what authority do they speak. Paul has an interesting perspective, he has faith in God to accomplish salvation for him personally and for the progress in the faith of others. This is how Paul says it in Philippians 1:18 “whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in this, I rejoice”. So, as long as the name of Jesus Christ is proclaimed for people to hear, the Spirit will do his work and he trusts God to deal with the people.
Paul also says he has faith in God that he will not be put to shame, that his work will not be wasted or unfruitful in
Philippians 1:20 “according to my eager expectation and hope, that I will be put to shame in nothing, but with all boldness, even now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether through life or through death”.
He also says that for him “to die is gain” in Philippians 1:21 but to live, in Philippians 1:22 “But if it is to live in the flesh, this is fruitful work for me”. There is work for him to do every day that he has breath and that is “for your progress and joy in the faith” in Philippians 1:25.
Lead Lives Worthy of the Gospel of Christ
United in Spirit, Having One Purpose
He Humbled Himself
This phrase, think this in yourselves” is a little awkward for us in
Philippians 2:5 “Think this in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus”
The message Paul is conveying is, as “The oldest manuscripts read, “Have this mind in you,” … (see on Php 2:4, and Php 1:24) … Christ, the one pre-eminently who sought not His own, but “humbled Himself” (Php 2:8), first in taking on Him our nature, secondly, in humbling Himself further in that nature (Ro 15:3).”1
We are to follow Jesus as the example, as the way we are to walk in the earth. As it says in
Acts 10:38 Jesus of Nazareth—how God anointed him with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, because God was with him.
Jesus didn’t come seeking his own way, he came as a servant proclaiming the way of the kingdom of God. Even more than that, Jesus took every criticism, every accusation, every condemnation even to the point of death. But his death was only the beginning as in
Philippians 2:9 “Therefore also God exalted him and graciously granted him the name above every name”
The One at Work in You is God
Sincerely Concerned About Your Circumstances
Consider Such People Highly Honored
Worship by the Spirit of God
Beware! This seems like an odd statement to be included here as Paul talks about “my brothers, (who he encourages to) rejoice in the Lord” in Philippians 3:1 and he makes the claim that “we are the circumcision, the ones who worship by the Spirit of God and boast in Christ Jesus” in Philippians 3:3. We have faith in God. We have put our trust in the work Jesus Christ did to redeem us. We know the Spirit of God, the voice that now speaks to us spirit to spirit.
There is though, a stark contrast between having this confidence in God and those that have confidence in the flesh. They are described using the word “Beware” twice in
Philippians 3:2 Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the mutilation.
Here, the dogs are “the abominable” (compare Rev 21:8, with Rev 22:15; Mt 7:6; Tit 1:15, 16).2 And the “evil workers—(2 Co 11:13), (are) “deceitful workers.” … men who “worked,” indeed, ostensibly for the Gospel, but worked for evil: “serving not our Lord, but their own belly” (Php 3:19; compare Ro 16:18).3 And, the mutilation, where “Circumcision had now lost its spiritual significance, and was now become to those who rested on it as any ground of justification, a senseless mutilation. Christians have the only true circumcision, namely, that of the heart”3
- Philippians 1:18–26 Christ is Proclaimed
- Philippians 2:5–11 He Humbled Himself
- Philippians 3:1–4 Worship by the Spirit of God
- Philippians 1:18-30
- Philippians 2:1-30
- Philippians 3:1-4
- 1. Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., & Brown, D. (1997). Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (Vol. 2, p. 363). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
- 2. Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., & Brown, D. (1997). Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (Vol. 2, p. 365). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
- 3. Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., & Brown, D. (1997). Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (Vol. 2, p. 366). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.