Philippians 4: 2-3 Analysis

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The point of this powerful story is the point of Philippians 4:4-9. Peace is not the absence of trouble. Rather, peace is knowing that Christ is with you in the midst of the trouble. Jesus is our shelter during a storm. In Philippians 4:2-9, Paul teaches us how to overcome anxiety. Opposition from unbelievers, conflict in the church, and concerns for the welfare of Paul and their representative Epaphroditus created anxieties among the Philippian believers. Last Sunday we looked at Paul’s advice in verses 2-3 about what we need to do when we deal with the conflict in the church and in verses 4-9, he teaches us what we need to do when we face hostile people and the upsetting problems of life. The main command in our text is in verse 6: Paul reflects…show more content…
The solution to anxiety is to rejoice in the Lord. What does it mean to “rejoice in the Lord always”? It means to make Christ the center of your life and have a thoughtful response to the circumstances of life. In verses 5 through 9, Paul outlines the proper way of responding to hostile people and daily pressures. How should you respond to unjust criticism and ridicule? How should you live a holy life when others persecute you? The term “gentleness” is often used in the Bible in the context of persecution and opposition. For example, Paul appeals to the “gentleness of Christ” in 2 Corinthians 10:1 as the reason for his own gentleness in his dealing with the false teachers who slandered him. In a society hostile to the Christian faith and values, Christians are called to respond with gentleness. The word translated “gentleness” is rich in meaning which is evident in the variety of expressions used in this verse in different translations of the Bible. Let me mention some of them: reasonableness, considerate, moderation, a patient mind, forbearance, and graciousness. From these expressions we can pull together this definition of gentleness: Gentleness is the ability to show patient endurance when you are treated unfairly. How does that look like? The apostle Peter illustrates this to us when he talks about Christ’s gentleness in 1 Peter 2:19-23: The way Jesus responded to hostile people is an example for us to follow. When someone hurts us, we must avoid retaliating or making threats and entrust our situation to God. Gentleness is the ability to show patient endurance when you are treated unfairly. With this phrase Paul reminds believers of God’s sovereignty. Belief in God’s sovereignty motivates us to be

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