June 17, 2021 - Pastor's Corner

Melvin-head-shot

Well, the day has arrived—today is the last insight entry from Philippians. Once again, this has been a wonderful experience in God’s Word for me, and I hope it has been for you as well.

But before we get to that entry, I’m excited to share our next Bible book focus for Pastor’s Corner will be 1 John! However, that time will not start until Thursday, September 2, 2021. Yes, we’re taking the Summer off to focus on Jesus in other ways and to spend time with our families.

And now, our final time in Philippians is fittingly the final verse, 4:23. So, please take a quick moment to read this verse afresh.

As always, please keep the gospel’s impact on our personal lives as expressed among our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ in your minds as you read the following insights.

From our passage today come the following insights:

  • The bookends of God’s grace in this letter are unmistakable (1:2 cf. 4:23). For it is obvious that Paul is utterly dependent upon God for all things, believes that all Christians are in the same camp, and he wants to keep this inescapable fact in the forefront of the minds of his readers. We need God’s grace to enable us to live for Jesus every day. We need God’s grace to strengthen us in every circumstance. We need God’s grace even when we don’t know or acknowledge our desperate need for it. That’s why it’s grace; receiving from God all that we need even though we don’t deserve it.
  • Furthermore, notice that the apostle affirms the ownership of grace belonging to the Lord Jesus Christ. This is not only an acknowledgment of Christ’s deity, but it also informs the Philippians and us that Jesus Himself is both the Sovereign God and Savior of those who believe in Him. For Paul uses the definite article “the” rather than the personal “our” before “Lord Jesus Christ” in this verse. Therefore, Jesus is in charge of all things, nothing escapes His direct attention, and He has the power and authority to bring into existence whatever is in our best interest in whatever circumstances we are in.
  • But notice where Paul states the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ to be—with our spirits. In other words, this particular experience of the grace of God is inside of us. Remember the apostle is in prison, albeit house arrest, he is still imprisoned and unable to go where he wants to whenever he wants to. Even so, Paul realizes that God’s grace is not limited by geographical location. For it is the practical experience of the believer in Jesus to always dwell in His presence because He Himself dwells inside each believer. After all, He is the God of all grace (cf. 1 Peter 5:10).

One last thing, I encourage you to read find time this Summer and read through 1 John at one sitting, and to do so at least 2-3 times. Thanks for spending this time together with me over the last few months, and I’ll “see” you in September!

Beloved, may grace and peace be yours in abundance from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!