Phil. 4:1-3:an outline from last Sunday

I got to preach last Sunday, and my text was Philippians 4:1-3. Here is my outline and a story, I shared to add some humor:
You will probably recognize this fictional story that has been circulating around the world by way of e-mail:

I was walking across a bridge recently. I spied this fellow who looked like he was ready to jump off. So, I thought I’d try to stall him until the authorities showed up. “Don’t jump!” I said. “Why not?” he said. “Nobody loves me.”

“God loves you,” I said. “You believe in God, don’t you?”

“Yes, I believe in God,” he said.

“Good,” I said. “Are you Christian or Jewish?”

“Christian,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Protestant or Catholic?”

“Neither,” he said.

“What then?” I said.

“Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Independent Baptist or Southern Baptist?”

“Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “New Evangelical/Moderate Independent Baptist or Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“Conservative Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist or Lose-Your-Salvation Armenian Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist or Historical Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist or For Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist or Strict Separation of Church and State Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “Pro-Disney Boycott Pro-Life Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist or Anti-Disney Boycott Pro-Choice Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“Pro-Disney Boycott Pro-Life Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist,” he said.

“Me, too!” I said. “KJV Only Pro-Disney Boycott Pro-Life Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist or Modern Versions Pro-Disney Boycott Pro-Life Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist?”

“MODERN VERSIONS Pro-Disney Boycott Pro-Life Unashamed Fundamentalist Against Women in Ministry Dispensational Premillennial Calvinistic Conservative Independent Baptist” he said.

“Auugghh!!! You heretic!” I said. And I pushed him over.

No doubt most of you have read or heard this story, and hopefully you laughed. And yet as I laugh, I realize that this fictional conversation and its outcome is repeated time after time in churches across our land and around the world. Christians seem more inclined to attack their fellow-saints than they do to evangelize the lost. Many saints have been gravely wounded by “friendly fire.” In our text, Paul deals with a rift between two of the women in the church at Philippi, women who had once contended side-by-side for the faith. Now, they are waging war against each other, and it would appear that they are seeking to gather support for themselves from others within the church. Here is an age-old problem that has plagued the people of God throughout the history of the church. Let us listen well to what Paul has to say to these two women, for surely he is speaking to us as well.

http://www.bible.org/page.php?page_id=1474

1. A word on conflict:

·        Conflict is unavoidable

·        Conflict can cripple churches

·        Conflict can blind Christians

·        Conflict is resolvable in the Lord

 

 2. Paul’s affection:

  • My brothers, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends.

 3. Paul’s concern:

·        Stand firm in the Lord

o       Military imagery

o       Recalling the previous mention of heavenly citizenship

·        Stand as one:

o       Unity was important to Paul (2:1-4)

o       Euodia and Syntyche had some disagreement

§         Weren’t living up to the meaning of their names

§         Euodia means prosperous journey

§         Syntyche means pleasant acquaintance

o       These women had labored with Paul in spreading the gospel

§         Now instead of spreading Jesus they are spreading dissension

 4. Paul’s plan:

  • Agree with each other in the Lord
    • Addresses each women equally
    • A common theme throughout the letter
      • 1:14; 2:19, 24, 29; 3:1; 4:4
    • Remember the bigger picture
      • The gospel trumps our petty differences
      • Those in the church are family
        • Christ has made a difference
          • In our condition, in our character, in our thinking, and in our relationships
  • Help these women
    • Asks help from a third party from “loyal yoke fellow” and Clement
    • Paul wants the church to help ease the tension
  • Commends past faithfulness
  • Stand on the promises:
    • Their names were written in the book of life
    • Had been Paul’s co-workers

 

5. What about us?

  • Are we holding grudges?

Are we living up to our calling?

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About Jason Retherford

The random musings of a youth minister.
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One Response to Phil. 4:1-3:an outline from last Sunday

  1. thedougout24 says:

    Thanks for the kind words on my blog, brother. We are safe and sound here in Bakersfield. Hope the holidays treat you well. I’ve started on the comp exam today. I’ll let you know how it goes. Love you bro.

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