Gospel People are Grateful People

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Gospel People are Grateful People
Text: Philippians 1:1-11
Occasion: Thanksgiving
Audience: General
Theological Tradition: General
Topic: Thankfulness
Author: Jeff Mammen


Direction

We are to be thankful in all things because we can see grace pouring over everything.

How to Get There

  • Thanksgiving time we celebrate what we have to be thankful for. But would we still be thankful if we didn't have anything?
  • The Philippian church had been divided into factions, and Paul is concerned about what was going on. There were quite a few problems in the church.
  • Paul is writing this letter from jail, he had nothing, and he is still thankful. He knows there is a lot wrong with the church, but he is thankful for them.
  • We can be thankful in every situation, including being thankful for those people who are a mess, who do us wrong.
  • Paul is saying that there is something within us, thanks to God, that can not only be polite, but be thankful in all situations.
  • This is about keeping our focus on the main thing, not on the little issues, Jesus Christ. That's what Paul is doing here, he is focusing on the gospel, on Jesus Christ, not on petty issues that divide us.
  • Being saved is being in Jesus, it is letting Jesus affect us and our lives, how we relate to others.
  • Every relationship with have involves Jesus in it, it's a three-way relationship with Christ in there too.
    • That means there is no condemnation, no hatred, no bitterness with Christ. There is peace, and love, kindness.
    • Paul is asking people to agree in the Lord, recognize that Jesus is in that relationship, all our relationships.
  • Paul is begging that we remember what it was like when Jesus first broke into our hearts. We need to remember that, make it the main thing of our lives, what affects everything we do. It is what makes us thankful in every situation, thankful for our God as we see more than the person, we see our savior at work in them.
  • We can see grace transforming us, transforming the world, through Jesus Christ and that is something to be thankful for, that God will bring it all to completion, that grace is active right now.

Things to Watch For

Philippians is usually considered to be the happiest book of the Bible, so considering that there were any problems in the Church at all can be difficult for some. But the church had problems just like any other. They might not have been as major, but Paul still tries to help them overcome those problems.

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