Thursday, February 16, 2017

Philippians: Part 24- How to be content and the power of Divine provision | Colin D

This message was preached  by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on February 12th, 2017. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here

In the Bible, there are some favourite verses people memorise. Two of them are Phil 4:13 and 4:18.

Phil 4:10-20I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.  I can do all things through him who strengthens me. Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble. And you Philippians yourselves know that in the beginning of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church entered into partnership with me in giving and receiving, except you only. Even in Thessalonica you sent me help for my needs once and again. Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that increases to your credit. I have received full payment, and more. I am well supplied, having received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God. And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. To our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Paul had a vision of a man from Macedonia and he ends up going to Philippi. In acts 16, we see the church being planted. He meets Lydia and gathers a people. Paul preached the gospel. Not only did they believe but they were baptised in water soon after. Paul and Silas were thrown into prison, and a miracle takes place there. They start praising God and the foundations of the prison were shaken. The jailor gets saved through this miracle. At that time of the night, the jailor and the whole family came to the Lord. Persecution continued in the church.

As he is writing this letter, he is in Rome. Paul is thanking them for the gift they sent.

1.      Concerned as the Philippians were concerned- He rejoices that the Philippians have renewed their concern for him. At the beginning, the Philippians sent him gifts to help him preach the gospel again and again. He tells them that there is an account in heaven and this money is a fragrant offering to God. they were not just concerned with their local church. We can become very concerned about our own church, but we need to make sure that the gospel goes to the ends of the earth. We need to be concerned about the people who are lost all over. we can do one of three things:
a.      We can go
b.      We can pray
c.      We can give
The Philippians were also concerned for one another. I want to commend this church for being concerned for one another’s needs.

2.       Content as Paul was content- are you saying, if only I had, the latest phone, or little more money, or a life-partner... Discontentment hits the rich and the poor. Someone asked John Rockerfeller, how much money do you need to be content? He said, just a little more than what I have. Contentment is something Paul had to learn. Our circumstances don’t determine our contentment. He was content in plenty and in need. There is an old puritan saying- “ he sat down to a meal of bread and water. He looked up, gave thanks and said, all this and Jesus too!” If we live by our desires, we will never be happy. It is not having everything you want, it’s wanting everything you have.  Paul went to great lengths to preach the gospel, and he said, in every situation, I am entrusting to God. 3 things we’ve got to be discontented with:
a.      With seeing people with needs around us
b.      With the lost-ness of the world. People without Jesus are going to hell. Your neighbour, your colleague at work or your friends at college- what are you doing to tell them that Jesus died for them. We cant be content with the lost-ness of the world
c.      With our own imperfections. We press on to become more and more like Jesus.
3.      Confident in God’s care- In verse 19, he said, my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. How can we receive that Promise? When we say, God I am living for you. It will cost! Philippians were the most generous church in the New Testament. These were extremely poor people. But they excelled in rich generosity.

Let’s be concerned as the Philippians, content as Paul, and confident in God’s ability to care for us. God doesn’t give us stingily, he gives abundantly.

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.