Setting the example Jesus left for us to follow
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Unity Through Humility, The Humbled and Exalted Christ, Light Bearers, Timothy Commended
Our Weekly Bible Study begins with us reading the assigned scripture ahead of time and preparing our hearts for study and discussion. When we meet (virtually or in person) we first read the scripture as a group, and then take turns sharing and discussing what impacted us the most, and our general interpretation of what we read.
Making Notes as we go through Bible Study is always encouraged, as it helps to increase our understanding of what we have read, and also allows us to become more comfortable and familiar with the Bible.
To make participation easier and more memorable for our younger children, we will include a link to Storybook Bible images of the readings whenever these are available.
This week’s virtual Bible Study focused on Philippians 2, the second chapter in our new study on the Book of Philippians. After praying and reading through the chapters, we discussed the verses at length, and shared our personal views on what we had read.
This book is filled with encouragement, profound truth and amazing promises, and it also appeals to sincerity.
Verse 1: Paul’s use of the word “if” in this verse does not express doubt, it actually implies certainty that since there is consolation.
Verse 2: Paul urges the Philippians to bring him joy by having the same love, and by being in one accord because this is what we find in Christ.
Verse 3: He reminds them not to do things for selfish reasons or out of conceit. Whatever is done must be done for the good of all concerned. We must ask ourselves how we see others… Do we look down on them? Do we think less of them because they appear to have less going for them than we do?
Verse 4: Many people in the world who are not even believers show kindness to others, therefore, as children of God, our standards must be even higher; our good deeds must be evident and they must be pure.
Verse 5: This verse should lead us to ask ourselves what was the mind of Christ? It should cause us to recall that the mind of Christ was one of deep love, affection and great mercy. This is the mind we are also called to have.
Verse 7: Jesus never ascribed or claimed any reputation unto himself; instead he took on the role of a bondservant “in the likeness of man”. He knew what it was to have any emotional feeling that any human can have.
Verse 8: Crucifixion was the lowliest, meanest of form of death for anyone. Jesus was naked, whipped and brutalized on the cross, and through all this, he remained obedient.
Verse 9: Jesus- the name above all names.
Verse 10: Every knee, all people alive, dead and in every state they are in should bow unto the name of Jesus.
Verse 12: Paul had such a deep fellowship with the brethren that he was confident that they had remained in obedience even when he was away in prison and no longer able to see them in person. When Paul states that we must “work out our salvation” he means that we must continue to keep our salvation growing and fit, very much as we exercise to keep our bodies fit. We cannot just gain salvation and not exercise it. Godly fear is what reinforces obedience and self-control.
Verse 13: Paul reminds us that we are created for God’s good pleasure. It is therefore important that we remain obedient and faithful to His will for our lives.
Verse 14-15: Do all things without complaining and disputing. We are all guilty of complaining at one point or another, and we must resist this. It is challenging at times, and we often undermine, accuse, second guess and criticize. We reason against, and we become rebellious, the world hears us, and it catches on. We have to be careful of this as we are called to be shining as lights in the world. This is a serious responsibility, and one that we must live up to.
Verse 16 : Often, after you have invested and hope to see new lights shining in the world, you still see darkness. Paul urges the Philippians to hold fast to the Word of life so that he would not have laboured in vain.
Verses 17-18: Paul is speaking to what his fate may be; he was aware that he could have been decapitated (poured out as a drink offering) but regardless, he rejoices, and tells the brethren that they should rejoice also.
Verse 19-20: Paul’s confidence in Timothy is clear. He says that he has no one like minded (as Timothy was).
Verse 21: All people are about their own business, seeking their own desires.
Verse 22: Paul speaks again to Timothy’s character which he knew well because Timothy has served with him.
Verse 23: Paul wanted to wait a while to first see how things would go with his situation.
Verse 24: He did not yet know what his fate would be, whether he would be released or executed, but he knew that the will of the Lord would be accomplished either way.
Verse 25: Epaphroditus had gone to minister to Paul, but became ill. God had mercy on him, however, and healed him. It is important to remember that if someone is not healed, it does not mean that God has not heard prayer, just that He has acted according to His good pleasure, His will.
Verse 30: Epaphroditus was well enough to travel, and was coming back to give testimonies to the Philippians about Paul’s life in prison. Paul wanted to be sure that the brethren understood that Epaphroditus was not abandoning him, he was just coming to share testimonies with them.
*Ministry is never without persecution. Many are afraid of persecution, and so they do not put their all into service.
As you read through this week’s Bible passage, ask yourself:
What are MY thoughts on what I am reading?
How can I apply this to MY life?
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