Through Him Who Gives Me Strength

by LA UBF   01/11/2013     0 reads



Philippians 4:1-23

Key Verse: 4:13

 I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

In Chapter 1 Paul said, "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain" (1:21). In chapter 2 he said, "Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus" (2:5). In chapter 3, he said, "I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death” (3:10-11). Now that we are in chapter 4, let us learn how Paul applies gospel faith to his people.

Part1, Agree with each other in the Lord (1-5)

Let’s read verse 1 “Therefore, 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!” Paul loved and longed for the Philippians, they were his joy. They were his crown. Paul encouraged them to stand firm in the Lord. 

Let’s read verse 2. "I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to agree with each other in the Lord." Paul did not mention about what the problem was between Euodia and Syntyche, but whatever it was; the important thing is to agree with each other in the Lord. Do you think you can work together without agreement? 

At my work place if I do not agree with my boss I cannot work. In the church if we do not agree with each other, it is very difficult to do the work of God. 

Let’s Read verse 3. "Yes, and I ask you, loyal yokefellow, help these women who have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life." These two women were fellow workers who had contended at Paul's side in the cause of the gospel. Their names were written in the book of life. But they did not agree with each other. So Paul asked his "loyal yokefellow"--perhaps the one who told him about this matter to reconcile.  It's not easy to stick one's nose into another's business. Perhaps Paul's co-worker had tried to keep out of it. It's easier and safer to say, "That's their problem." But broken relationships among coworkers can affect the whole body of Christ. So Paul urged them to agree with each other in the Lord, and he encouraged a responsible shepherd in Philippi to make this matter as his own business. 

How about our family life? Imagine husband and wife does not agree with each other. If I do not agree with my wife, she easily gets mad and eats a lot.  When I see her eat a lot and I eat a lot too. 

Thank God for many beautiful family of God in our Downey ministry. Look at Msn Paul Lim and Esther Lim; I don’t know in detail but one thing is sure they look so sweet. Look at Shepherd Terri and Mary Lopez--they look in forever honeymoon.  

Likewise when we serve ministry of God, as Paul said God wants us to agree with each other in the Lord. God created each of us differently; our Idea and styles are different; God wants us to work together in the Lord.

In our Downey ministry we have planning committee, Discipleship committee, Bible study committee, praise and worship committee, IT committee, CBF, JBF, and Fellowship according to campus. In a past few years God already has blessed our Downey coworkers to raise up young disciples of Jesus such as all nations team and now holy nations team are growing. It could be done because our coworkers worked together. Let us continue in good work in the Lord through agreeing with each other.

Let us Read verse 5. "Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near." "Gentleness" is also translated as "forbearance." It is very close to humbleness. The reason for being forbearing and not overbearing is, "The Lord is near." He will come in glory with his holy angels at any time. 

Part 2. Think about such things (6-9)

Read verse 6. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." 

In the book of Genesis Abraham was full of fear and a sense of loss. He was afraid. After this, the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield,[ HYPERLINK ""a] your very great reward.[ HYPERLINK ""b]” God showed him the stars and gave him a wonderful promise. He took him outside and said, "Look up at the heavens and count the stars--if indeed you can count them." Then he said to him, "So shall your offspring be. (Genesis 15:5). 6 Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness. After this the peace of God ruled his heart. 

In Luke gospel Chapter 10 at the Home of Martha and Mary 38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” 41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but few things are needed—or indeed only one.[ HYPERLINK ""f] Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Even if we have too many things to do and too little time to do them, busy-minded activity doesn't solve any problem. 

In this chapter verse 6 Paul encourages instead of being anxious, but in everything by prayer and petition with thanksgiving present requests to God. When we pray and ask God's help, the peace of God will guard our hearts and minds. He may or may not solve the problem right away. But surely the peace of God will guard our hearts. He gives us his peace in exchange for our anxiety. We can depend on God’s will and God will lead us in his best way. 

I was born with anxiety therefore did not disappear automatically. I have tried many things to solve my problem. Still these days I dream about taking college entrance exam. My wife said “You have obsessive compulsive disorder”. I am not familiar the words what she said but Indeed I check refrigerator, doors, all windows, heater, lights, gas stove and car several times a day. Even my son imitates my behavior by checking those things around my house. I have had insomnia for a long time.  What can I do? 

God created me in this way so I should accept what kind of person who I am, now I humbly need to ask God for help each and every day. The solution is only by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present my requests to God. Then the Holy Spirit, the peace of God will guard my hearts and my minds in Christ Jesus. Then I can live a sound healthy life with God’s peace. I always tell unthankful and unhappy people by asking them “Hay man! Can you eat? Can you sleep? Can you poopoo? If yes, be thankful!!!”

Let’s Read verse 8. "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." 

"Whatever is true" What do you mean? Jesus told his disciples, "I am the way and the truth and the life." (John 14:6) He told Pilate, "...I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Therefore Jesus is the truth. 

"Whatever is noble" noble means possessing very high or excellent qualities or properties.

"Whatever is right" means "whatever is just" we have to choose what is right instead of what is beneficial.

"Whatever is pure" means unmixed with any other things free from unclean things. 

We can easily be exposed to as pornography, violence and video game, worldly ambition, materialistic thinking. How can we keep ourselves pure from all kinds of these thing? 

(John 15:3) Jesus said, "You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you." 

(Ps 119:11) says, "I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you." 

(Ps 1) says  “Blessed the man is his delight in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers” Through the word of God we can keep pure in our heart, mind and soul.

"Whatever is lovely” means we can do love each other as Jesus loved us.

 "Whatever is admirable" means "of good report" God's people should never gossip or listen to gossip. 

"If anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." 

We can find out Our Creator God concerned about what we think. 

In Genesis 6:5-6 "The Lord saw how great man's wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The Lord was grieved..."

Romans 8:5,6 says, "Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace." 

Colossians 3:1, 2 he says, "...set your hearts on things above; Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things..." 

So let us think about such things whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy— For this we have to invite Jesus to come into our hearts and minds and soul.  HYPERLINK ""Mohandas Gandhi said “Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, and your values become your destiny.”

Last year, often I saw YouTube, especially I saw a lot Psy’s Gangnam style.  I don’t know why. It was so addicting. Why I did this? This was very useless. What was the benefit? I regret spending time to watch Gangnam style. This year I do not want to see this stupid style anymore. Instead I want to spend time to the word of God and prayer. With the word of God and prayer I should think about and live as “Jesus Style” let’s say “I am Jesus Style”


Read verse 9. "Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me--put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you." If we put it into practice, there is a promise here in verse 9: "The God of peace will be with you." When we put into practice on God's word and seek to obey him with action, God will give us peace.

Part 3. Being content in any and every situation (10-13)

Read verse 10. "I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it." Paul rejoiced in the Lord that their concern for him and for God's work had been renewed. He valued their friendship and wanted to see their active participation in gospel work. Read verse 11. "I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances." Paul served God being content whatever the circumstances. Paul was in prison. He must need many things. Environment must be terrible, very cold, dark, lonely, Surely He was very hungry. His body was very painful. There was no medicine. But he had learned to be content whatever the circumstances. Paul accepted his life with gratitude the life God had given to live. 

Read verses 12 "I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want”

Sometimes we are in need. Sometimes we can be plenty. A person named  HYPERLINK ""Carrie Jones  said “the secret of happiness is freedom; the secret of freedom is courage.”  A person named  HYPERLINK ""Jodi Picoult said “There are two ways to be happy: improve your reality, or lower your expectations. I think Paul did not live as a rich person materially. Probably he was in need. But I believe Paul was happy and courageous. He had a freedom. 

God has blessed me so much. Even though God has provided me with all things still I was not being content in any and every my situation. Now I am a senior application developer. Now I want to be promoted as a principal, an IT specialist, an IT manager, as the director, board of supervisor in the future. 

These days I want to buy a new car such as new Hyundai Genesis that M Taylor has.  My minivan is made in 1999, little bit old, my daughter call my van as Dong Cha means poopoo car.  One day Benjamin, Downey coworker mechanic commented my minivan, “Andrew, you save a lot of gas right? No minivan has 4 cylinder these days you are the only one whom I know has 4 cylinder minivan”.   When I heard his comments I became “Oh Yeah?” very happy.  I began giving thanks to God because I have 4 cylinder minivan. My car is still cool/lovely, runs well while saving gas.

When I see other families who have 4 or 5 children such as Shepherd Terri or Shepherd Williams, I become jealously of them. One day I told wife, they have five children, why not me? I have only three children, I asked her as my prayer topic, let’s have more children, she got mad at me, “Never say again, OK? My blood pressure will go up if you say again” Oh Lord, my petition was rejected harshly from my wife. 

One day I said to, Msn Pauline Chang, Noah’s wife in the kitchen at our church “You have four powerful boys! How blessed you are!” immediately Msn Pauline Jang responded me, “But you have two pretty daughters.”  (With mosquito voice) “Woops! Oh! Yeah?”  (Loudly) “Yeah! Thank God! God gave me lovely precious cute two daughters of God! Andrea! Hannah! When I leave this conference, these two daughters hold me, please kiss me! Kiss me! I learned to be content in my situation in my circumstances. 

Now what was Paul's secret of victory? 

Let us read verse 13 “13I can do everything through him who gives me strength”  

Paul did not try to live in his own strength. He received his strength from Jesus.

How can we serve sheep continually? How can we pioneer campus continually? Even though you are the superman, it is not easy. We need special help, we need special strength, we need special energy, we need special the spirit of God, and we need special good health without being tiring of. How?  

Paul said I can do everything through him who gives us strength. 

Let us say all together loudly “13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength”

Part 4. A fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God (14-23)

Let us read verse 14, "Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles." Then he goes on to teach them why Christians must give”

Read verses 15-16: "Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only; for even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me aid again and again when I was in need." The Philippians Christians had been a giving church from the beginning. 

Read verses 17-18. "Not that I am looking for a gift, but I am looking for what may be credited to your account. I have received full payment and even more; I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God." 

Paul was grateful for the gifts the Philippians sent, for they supplied his needs. But he teaches that giving is a spiritual exercise that always benefits the one who gives more than the one who receives. Acts 20:35b says, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" We have received grace from God that we can never repay. He gave his one and only Son to die on the cross for the sinners. Can I give my only one son Daniel for sinners?  I cannot think about it. But God did so. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. Therefore as God's chosen people, we should be the people who share/give to others. 


Read verse 19. "And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus." Jesus taught us same thing in Matthew gospel “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." (Mt 6:33). Read 20–23. “20 To our God and Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.21 Greet all the saints in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me send greetings. 22 All the saints send you greetings, especially those who belong to Caesar’s household.23 the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.[ HYPERLINK ""b]”

In Conclusion, through this passage we learned that we should agree with each other in the Lord. Let us think about such thing whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable. Our thinking may become our destiny. We are very thankful because we learned to be content in any and every situation. As God's people, Let us serve others, give to others. This is a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. Then God will meet all our needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. Amen.

Are you ready? ARE YOU READY for 2013!

Once in a while I play basketball. I enjoy when I make many goals!  Especially when I am in the same team with Msn Y David, I am happy do you know why? I have more chance to make goals because he passes basket ball to me on right time on right place. In our spiritual life if we have a good coworker, it will be Cool!

Let us pray our missionaries shepherd, shepherdess altogether have a one spirit, one direction agree with each other, work together for the work of God. Let us pray each of us invite more than one student to spring Bible Conference and continue to raise up many disciple of Jesus together. My sheep is your sheep.  Your sheep is my sheep. Our sheep is their sheep. Their sheep is our sheep. Are you agreeing with that? Common! Follow me! Let us say altogether. My sheep is your sheep.  Your sheep is my sheep. Our sheep is their sheep.  Their sheep is our sheep. Let us pray we may become spiritual dream team. God wants unity in Christ Jesus. Do you know this year we have an international Bible conference? Please save money! This is not my point. My point is Let us pray someday Downey UBF may host an international Bible conference so that we can serve/support all the missionaries/shepherd all over the world. Let’s read verse 13 all together.13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength. 

One word: I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Philippians 4 by Andrew Park Page  PAGE 1