During COVID-19, my Bible study has gathered virtually. We haven’t missed a week. We’ve done some studies on psalms and are now studying the book of Philippians. Join us by reviewing the notes and watching the encouraging videos. Our goal is to learn and hold on to the truths that our eyes, ears, brains, and thoughts all work to direct our lives. And we can find joy in Jesus and direction for our lives from Paul’s teachings in Philippians. Our study will be about:
Confidence — Knowing Jesus will complete the work he has started in us. (chapter 1)
Joy — In all things finding joy and hope. (chapter 2)
Focus — Keeping our eyes on Jesus. (chapter 3)
Think — Renew your mind in the things of God. (chapter 4)
In Philippians 1:1-11, Paul begins his letter to the saints in the church at Philippi. Paul planted this church on his second missionary journey around 49 AD (Acts 16:6-34) and he greatly loved these people. His compassion and affection for these people is clearly seen in his letter. Paul wrote to encourage the Philippian church and he wrote while imprisoned under house arrest in Rome. Chained to a jailer, Paul wrote about joy in any circumstances and told us that it begins with being confident based on what God has done for us, in us, and will continue to do in and through us (Phil 1:6). We should remember that the amount of joy we experience will be directly related to the amount of gratitude we feel toward our gracious and loving God.
Watch this short video and decide what your answer is to the question, “is your glass half-empty or half-full?”
Watch this short video that illustrates Paul’s teachings about finding joy in the midst of suffering. This video was filmed in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti and teaches us about joy in suffering. Watch for the interview with a man who was a teacher in a seminary. When he felt the rumblings, he left his second floor classroom where his students were taking a test. He went down to the first floor, then outside, to see what was happening. As he looked around, the building he had just exited came crashing down. Everyone inside was killed—including his wife. Be inspired by a Haitian man who found joy in the midst of tragedy and sorrow.
Watch this short video. Pastor Matt Chandler was diagnosed with brain cancer in November 2009. Prior to his surgery, he addressed his congregation via video and proclaimed his faith and hope in the midst of his fiery trial.
1 Pet 4:12 -13 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
In every trial, tribulation, every challenge, every conflict, in the good times and the bad…Jesus is enough. Enough joy for the day and enough peace for our souls.
Before moving on to chapter 2 of Philippians, we looked at what possible time of year the Rapture might occur (we’re not setting a day or hour, just considering at what time of year as might be revealed by the prophetic pattern of the three harvests of Israel). Here’s the study: Will the Rapture of the Church Occur at Shavuot (Pentecost).pdf (Click to Download)
Philippians 2 teaches us to be humble and likeminded. Living a Christian life is a day by day commitment and exercise. And, it’s about vision — seeing and focusing the “eyes” of our understanding on Jesus. Read more here, then scrool down and watch a fun 1 minute video. After watching, close your eyes and you will really “SEE” Jesus!
LOVE LIKE JESUS
Before moving on to chapter 3 of Philippians, we looked at ways we can LOVE LIKE JESUS. With the racial unrest and civil disobedience taking place in June 2020, we addressed how we as the church can serve Jesus and reflect His love by loving our neighbors. Here’s the study that’s appropriate for any time and any circumstances: How Can We Love Like Jesus PDF
Philippians 3 offers precious verses that instill confidence, assurance, and hope. Take time in this chapter to enjoy the blessings of security and rest we have in Jesus.
Philippians 3:7, 10 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death
Philippians 3:13-14 …this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:20-21 For our conversation [citizenship] is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
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