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Overcoming Anxiety: Finding Peace, Discovering God

 

2 Timothy 2:2

Challenge #2 Suffering
Philippians 1:29-30

Living a Powerful Consistent Life!

Paul J. Bucknell
_________________________

The Bible Teaching Commentary

Consistency (Philippians 1:27-30) | High Standards (Philippians 1:27b) | Challenge of Relationships (1 Philippians 1:27c) | Opposition (Philippians 1:28) | Challenge of Suffering (Philippians 1:29-30)
Video (Philippians 1:27-30) | Bible Study Questions (Philippians 1:27-30)
Book of Philippians Introduction


Purpose

Opposition Bringing Suffering is an expository sermon on Philippians 1:29-30 highlighting the second challenge Christians face when attempting to live out the gospel in its full power. The summary of this section on Philippians 1:27-30 is also provided here.


Challenge #2: Opposition Bringing Suffering (Philippians 1:29-30)

“29 For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 experiencing the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear to be in me” (Philippians 1:29-30).

When opponents arise, they will try all sorts of schemes to minimize your impact. Christians are like sheep. They think people wouldn’t do such things, but if they actually went ahead and framed Jesus, they would do such things to His people too. Paul presents this situation in a slightly different way, changing our perspective of suffering. (Read here for more on Paul’s example of suffering).

“It has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake” (1:29). Paul is essentially telling them that the complete package of redemption often includes this privilege of suffering for Christ. This is especially true of those believers in places that where the gospel has not yet taken firm root or where the gospel is being rejected.

Paul wants us to think of it as a privilege and we should. They ‘saw in me.’ He also wants us to think of himself as a good example for us all. Paul sees himself as a pioneer and that those who are impacted by these apostles and evangelists, will often be impacted by the opposition of the evil one working through that culture to dismiss the gospel.

Is it wrong to have the apostles to preach the Word then? Absolutely not! Sometimes we forget how dark and wicked the societies and lives are that do not know Jesus. Even in Jesus’ day, we see the forces of evil at work. The gospel provides eternal life to those who believe.

Summary and application: Consistency

No matter what the challenge, we find that the gospel can sustain us during difficult times. Challenges will continue to arise, but we need to face and endure them with great hopes of being an example for others around us.

The Lord has given us the opportunity to live out our Christian lives. We need to step forward, pledge ourselves and live for Christ no matter what we face. This frees us to live for His ways and be unafraid of the enemy’s tactics.

Until we do so, the Gospel will be locked up in church buildings rather than radiating and penetrating the sin-stained cultures around us.

Final conclusions and applications

I started by sharing the difficulty on transferring knowledge so that it becomes practical and helpful. In this case I was thinking of helping my son. He was a bit reluctant, but then I urged him on and worked closely with him. He saw me drilling before, but it is different operating one.

DrillsI took the drill and put it in his hands. I made sure he had his finger on the start button and then held my hands around his and the drill to keep it steady. Meanwhile, I was telling him how it works and what to be careful of. I made four holes and then he, with a little help, made four holes.

How are we going to transfer Paul’s examples and exhortations into our lives?

We need to hold to that high standard of a Christ-filled life that the gospel provides. Paul carefully wrote to the Philippians and showed us, like a dad with a son, that it can be done. Starting in 1:27, Paul turns around and says, “Now it is your turn.

Personal reflection

  • What will you do with your life?

  • May you learn from Paul’s example and unreservedly commit yourself to a holy standard.


This ends this mini-series on Precious Consistency. Click below to continue with a Bible study on this passage or other related topics:

Bible Study Questions (Philippians 1:27-30)

Check out other related quality BFF materials:

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Humility and Suffering: Reflections on Isaiah 53.
As long as we make it our goal to pursue happiness, we will always avoid suffering. No one would choose to suffer unless there was a good and certain ...

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