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  #41  
Old 07-04-2009, 07:38 PM
Chris F
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Philippians is a part of the often called prison Epistles. So when I read this book this is often what I try to keep in mind. What is Paul trying to tell his audience while in jail in Rome. I also remember the date. Many argue when it is written but we can narrow it down to 60-62 AD because this was Paul first imprisonment. Also since it is house arrest and they are not planning to kill Paul tells us it had to be prior to 62 AD because this is when Nero went off the deep end and started rounding up Christian to kill in the colosseum and to be tar and pitched to light up his gardens. So it is unlikely they would let Paul have house arrest in those circumstances.

So this is no doubt a start to the persecution. So Paul wanted to let them all know what is happening and going to happen chapter 1:12-26

This book is probbaly the most straight forward books of Paul. We know he is primarily dealing with gentiles also because there are no OT quotes.

Chapter 1

The most important aspect I find in this chapter is Paul speaking of the cross of Christ. If you notice in all Paul's writings he tends to focus on Jesus and the cross. In Corinthians he said I know nothing but Christ and Him Crucified. So in verses (12-18) Pauls is telling them that their gifts of support are allowing Christ to be preached. Paul is actually joyous inspite of imprisonment that the cross is be proclaimed. (19-26) Paul encourages them that even though circumstances are not perfect Chris is centered. The often quoted verse for me to live is Christ (while he is alive he will keep preaching) and to die is gain (even if I die that just means I go to Christ so it is win win)(27-30) can cut you. Paul is trying to tell us that our conduct must be worthy of the gospel. Basically he is saying how you act as a Christian tell people more of Christ then your words.

So what I took from Chapter 1 was

1- It is about the cross
2 In Christ it is win win
3- Am I living worthy of the gospel? If not better change
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  #42  
Old 07-04-2009, 11:28 PM
Rev
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I am gonna try and keep it short.

I love how he gives encouragment at the begining of this letter and lets the leadership in the church know that he is thinking about them. He gives aood praise for the work they do.(vs.1-11)

He goes on to tell them not to be discouraged because he is locked up. He has been told that his "circumstances" for the betterment of the word. People are bolder because of it. He doesnt care what it takes as long as people hear about the Lord. He pretty much says not to feel sorry for him because he is in an awesome position, if he dies, then he gets to go to heaven. If he lives, he gets to share the gospel with more people and win them to Christ. (what an optimist)

He goes on and gives direction on the peoples everyday conduct and how they should live like Christ. (the bible that we live could be the only bible that some get to see) He tells us to expect to be persecuted as a follower of Christ.

It is hard not to start preaching. lol
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  #43  
Old 07-05-2009, 04:10 PM
Chris F
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Alright guys and gals part of a bible study is accountability and discussion. So start posting slackers. Weekend is almost over.
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  #44  
Old 07-06-2009, 07:13 PM
Chris Wescott
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Hi Friends,

Like I wrote last week, I was out of town for the weekend. I did my reading though and will post some thoughts later today.

-Chris
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  #45  
Old 07-06-2009, 08:08 PM
Chris Wescott
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I joined this Bible study to help bring me closer to God, so I ask you all to forgive my personalization of the readings.



5Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
6Who, being in very nature[a] God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
7but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
9Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

I was raised to bow down to no one. The idea of making myself nothing in front of the Lord, I understand it but I don’t know how to do that. It seems so alien.

But in that simple act itself, Jesus was exalted.

It seems upside down. To reach the highest levels you must first embrace the lowest levels that I for one have spent so much time avoiding.

Generative Questions:
1. Does that make me trapped? Is that a wall that keeps me separated from Jesus?

2. How do I humble myself to Jesus? How does someone like me who is very independant learn how to obey Jesus?
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  #46  
Old 07-06-2009, 08:23 PM
Rev
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Well, first you have to realize that without him...... you are doomed. Once you get that its kinda easy to be humble before him.
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  #47  
Old 07-06-2009, 08:24 PM
Chris Wescott
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7But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ 9and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith. 10I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead


This is a clear choice. Choose attainment of the resurrection from the dead, choose life and to live forever like Jesus, or choose worldly concerns like profit.

And Paul seems to acknowledge that in following the path of “Knowing” Jesus, you may be at odds with man’s laws. He writes that he doesn’t have righteousness that comes from the law, his righteousness is in his faith.
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  #48  
Old 07-10-2009, 03:06 PM
surveyorshawn
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Ok guys, I picked Philippians, and I promise i am going to respond with my thoughts. I have just been very busy getting caught up with work etc. as we get ready to go to the hospital for Ben's surgery. As you read this book, I would really like you to approach it from a different angle than has been previously posted on this thread. Instead of looking at it strictly from a theological point of view and dissecting the scripture, greek words, verbs, historical period, etc. (nothing wrong with that at all, just bear with me), look at it from the perspective of, "as I am reading this, what is God trying to say to ME specifically as His child...what does He want ME to get out of this...what does He want to change and or grow in ME?"

Again, knowing all the theological, linguistic, and historical things about the book are great, and are a valuable part of Bible study, but unfortunately most studies stop there. I would like each of us to get much more than that through this study. Keep in mind that this Christianity thing is about a relationship with God through Jesus, not just an education about Him. The Word of God is alive. It is more than just words written on paper for us to study. It is God speaking to us, calling us to a close walk with Him, and changing us. He is speaking to us individually and corporately.

In John 17:3, Jesus says, "Now this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent." This whole thing is about getting to know God personally, not just to know & learn about Him. Of course learning about Him is a part of it, but too many people limit their studies to that and wind up with nothing other than a good theological education. Let's read this time just to get to know Him & listen to what He is saying to each of us specifically. That's our challenge for this study of Philippians. Have fun listening to and getting to know our "Daddy"!!
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  #49  
Old 07-10-2009, 05:51 PM
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Here are my thoughts

Verse One tells me that the Episcopal set up of the Church had already happened, or was begining to. Paul mentions people in authority of others within the church.

Interesting to note that Paul is already refering to believers as "Saints" confirming the believif that the Communion of Saints was probably something that become theologically apparent as soon as the first generation of Christians began to die.

Verse Two, commonly used as the introduction to the Eucharistic Prayer in Anglicanism

Verses 3-6

Paul likes Community. The mixing of Christians with other Christians should be a joyous occasion because both are united in their faith. It is more then a shared believif. It should inspire prayers of thanksgiving.

Before he has even Died, the day of Judgement is on the mind of the Early Church. Paul writes as if to imply that there will not be the passing of much time before "The Day" which is a reference to the Old Testament Prophets who called Judgement by the Title "The Day of The Lord" I wonder how prevelent in the Early Church thr thought was that Christs return would be VERY soon...as in a matter of Years not a matter of Centuries.

Verses 7&8

Paul very much sees himself as a Christian Authority, and a mentor in the Faith. He likens his own love, to that of GODs love. Thus if we take this to be true, GOD feels the same joy in Community, I pleased by Communion with other Christians, and continually dwells upon those who he has Saved with kindly affection.

There is no distinction for Paul in personal circumstances between those positive and negative when it comes down to Opus Dei. He doesnt care what situation he is put in, for he believes it doesnt change GODs ability to work through him. His empowerment is not based on Freedom, or on Happiness

Verses 9-11

Paul has a wish that those who he advises progress enough to be able to discern for themselves. In a sense he wants them to take their own responsibility for choosing how best to follow GOD. This would evidently be an achievement, therefore one wonders how often he writes to the Church. This Church may either be extremely young, or full of Christians who relay quite heavily on Pauline imput, for He says that such an achievement would be a testimony to the Power of GOD. His hopes are then not so much for growth, but for maturity.

Verses 12-14

Paul believes that GOD is useing him to get a foothold within those who are against him. He does not remain silent on the issues of his arrest, indeed everyone in the probation service knows not only that he is under arrest, but also why.

Perhaps he writes this to show how GOD can work through negative circumstances, but maybe he also writes it to reassure. If this church relays upon his imput heavily, it may fear that because he is under arrest Opus Dei might suffer and that they dont know what to do. It may cause this Church far more distress then it causes Paul. Knowing that, Paul may be writing to reassure the Church that GODs mission goes on regardless, and rather then become distressed, his imprisonment should serve to make them speak more.

Paul has a good idea about how public Pressure can be used to put heat onto institutions, he uses the tactic several times during the book of Acts of The Apostles. He is teaching some basic skills. Dont quit or flee in the face of adversity, and dont go quietly into the night neither.

Verses 15-18

Even Before his Death, Paul is making reference to Work placed Politics. He recognises that there are other people who would jump at the chance to be writing to Churches just like him, perhaps even succeeding him in some way within the church heirachy. He also admits that they have the potential to deliberatley do him harm whilst he isnt physically present.

He never says these people are false believers. Indeed, I believe, from my own personal experience, that he's simply talking about the motives of other Believers. They are doing a disservice to him on a personal level, but so long as it brings recognition to the cause, Paul doesnt seem to mind.

Verses 19-30

There is personal motive in Paul wishing the Church to mature. He wishes to go home. He recognises that at present if he were to die, the Church would suffer. But he would rather like to be on his way.

Paul recognises that times are hard for the Church, and tries to show empathy and indeed a way for the church to have hope by knowing that even when they are frightened and suffering, so has Christ before them, and so does Paul presently.

Makes you wonder how desperate that Church might have been. I wonder if anyone knows the History of the Church after Paul died
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  #50  
Old 07-10-2009, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surveyorshawn
too many people limit their studies to that and wind up with nothing other than a good theological education. Let's read this time just to get to know Him & listen to what He is saying to each of us specifically. That's our challenge for this study of Philippians. Have fun listening to and getting to know our "Daddy"!!
I dont know what it means to me personally I dont understand how to do that

I'm just trying to summerize what I think the text means and what that might indicate about all the characters involved
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