Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Philippians 1:27
The church in Philippi is under pressure. It is an external pressure that is threatening to destroy them and the message they proclaim—from the inside. They are under pressure because Philippi is a difficult place to be a believer in Jesus. For most in this Roman colony, Cesar is the only one person who rightfully holds the titles of “Savior” and “Lord.” To proclaim anything differently was to place yourself in great danger. You could lose your job, your family, your social status and even your life. The losses this church experienced left them in “extreme poverty” (2 Corinthians 8:2). This church was beginning to fracture due to complaining, arguing and selfishness.
The Apostle Paul knew what’s at stake. It would be impossible for them to proclaim the message of God’s generosity when they were fighting. They couldn’t fight for the gospel if they were fighting with each other. And what was at stake was the gospel of God’s generosity in the gift of Jesus. Paul wanted them to be unified because it is a better way to live and because there is a mission beyond unity—the saving grace of Jesus. It is unity with a purpose.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
Our ability to get along with others, especially when the pressure is on, impacts our ability to spread the gospel. When we model humbleness, we are focusing on the greater purpose of pointing people to Jesus. Today, turn to page 20 in your Philippians: Choosing Joy Under Pressure journal and write 2-3-4. Senior Pastor Jeff Manion asked us this week to write out the verses Philippians 2:3–4 word-for-word and to ask God to help us remember this each day. Put it as our screensaver or on our visor in our car. Reviewing 2-3-4 can be a game changer in our family, business, church and community as we conduct ourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.
Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.