Welcome to Week 24 of the Higher Hope Church 2018 New Testament Reading Plan! If you haven’t already, go pick up your 5x5x5 Reading Plan and join our private Facebook group for daily interaction and discussion. This week we finished Ephesians and started Philippians!
Live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Keep in unity with one another through the bond of peace. Christ gave us the apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers to equip his people for works of service so that the body of Christ would be built up until we reach unity in the faith and fullness in Christ. We must put off our old self and put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Follow God’s example and walk in the way of love. There must be no hint of sexual immorality, impurity, greed, obscenity, foolish talk, or coarse joking in God’s holy people. You were once darkness but now you are light in the Lord so live as children of the Light. Expose the darkness, do not have anything to do with it. Do not live as unwise, but as wise. Be filled with the Spirit. Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Paul gives specific instructions to children, fathers, slaves, and masters. Paul ends by illustrating how we are to go into battle against the devil’s schemes like a soldier would enter war. We are not in a battle against flesh and blood but rather against the rulers, authorities, and power of the dark world and the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Once all of the armor is in place, Paul’s final command is to pray at all times and in all situations.
Paul opens with a heartfelt prayer and thanksgiving toward the people of Philippi. He encourages them by saying that even thought he is currently in chains, it has led to advancement of the gospel. Paul’s fervent pray and wish is that Christ continues to be exalted in his body, whether by life or by death. He encourages the Philippi believers to conduct themselves in a manner worthy of the gospel.
Paul encourages them to value others above themselves and to look at others’ interests above their own. Do everything without grumbling or arguing and continue to work out their salvation with fear and trembling for for it is God who works in them to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Paul indicates that he will be send Timothy and Epaphroditus to them soon.
Have a great week!