Philippians: Joy Centred in Jesus – Part 6

Philippians 4:4-23

Philippians: Joy Centred in Jesus – Part 6

The Secret of Contentment

I. An emphatic COMMAND: REJOICE! v. 4
A. Not a call to IGNORE Circumstances (1:12-26 (esp. 18b-20))
B. Not a call to CHANGE Circumstances (2:8,14-16)
C. INSTEAD, a call to RECEIVE Circumstances (v. 5)

II. The Practice of THANKING v. 6-7
A. The DIVISIVE Danger of WORRY (v. 6; Mt. 6:25-34)
B. The BACKWARDS Logic of Joyful GRATITUDE (v. 6; I Thes. 5:16-18; Col. 2:7)
C. Trading CONTROL for PEACE (v. 7; Prov. 3:5-6)

III. The Practice of THINKING v. 8
A. RECALIBRATING our CENTRE (v. 8; Prov. 23:7; Mark 7:20-23; Ps. 19:7-9)
B. Taking all of the GOOD into ACCOUNT (v. 8; Is. 26:3; Ps. 103:2; Col. 3:1-2)

A. PRACTICE makes PEACEFUL (v. 9, 11-12)
B. The INNER Strength comes from OUTSIDE of us (v. 13)
C. PEACE is a PERSON (v. 5, 7, 9, 13)

Questions for Further Reflection:

1. Kid’s Question: What has been your favourite birthday party? What made it so special?
2. When is the last time that you rejoiced or celebrated? What was the cause?
3. How do you approach circumstances in your life that you don’t like? Do you ignore them? Do you try to change them?
4. Have you ever received a gift you did not want at the time?
5. Are you more of a worrier or a thanker?
6. What is the leading cause of worry in your life? Is it a physical, mental, or spiritual concern? In what ways is a desire for control at the root of the problem?
7. What methods do you use to remind yourself of God’s goodness?
8. What practices can you implement now (with complete freedom to fail) to open yourself towards the God of peace?
9. In what area of your life are you feeling a complete lack of peace? How does Phil. 4:13 apply to this circumstance?
10. What do the words, “The Lord is near” mean to you? Do you see them as warning or encouragement? How can you take to heart the truth that the God of Peace is near?