Posted by: Mark | February 11, 2011

Philippians 2.12-13 – 3 Questions

Take some time to read and re-read the following section from Philippians and ask yourself the questions that follow:
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.  Philippians 2.12-13
  1. … as you have always obeyed … Can my mentors say this of me? Can others who watch my life say this of me? Can my family say this of me? Is my life marked with obedience to God?
  2. … work out your own salvation with fear and trembling … While works do not save me they are the mark of my salvation. If there is no evidence of good works in my life there is no salvation. Works do not imply salvation but salvation does imply works. So with that in mind working out our salvation is doing the works (fruit) that is produced by our salvation. The fear and trembling has been hard for me to understand. It must be related to the next phrase because of the word “for”. My way of understanding it is that because these works that we are to do are from God, and of God, and instilled with the will and power of God, then that whole thought should put a certain fear or awe and a trembling within me. As Christians we are to do the works of the almighty God right now, on earth. Does this blow me away? It should. As a Christian I am an ambassador, a worker, a representitive, the hands and feet for the almighty creator God. Just let that sink in. Do I have an appropriate fear and trembling as I live my life for God?
  3. … it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure … Praise God we are not on our own to do these works. However, the natural implication in me often has been along the lines of – what right does God have to do this. But, as I have meditated on God more and more my thinking has changed. Now I find it so encouraging that God is working in me to complete His will. Right now, today, am I awed that the God of the universe is working in me? Do I have such a reverence for God and a good grasp of the task He has set me, that the fact that He is working in me makes sense and gives me confidence?

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