This coming Sunday we commence a new series through Paul's letter to the Philippians. In the opening section (verses 1-11) we are given insight into Paul's prayer for the saints at Philippi. Despite being imprisoned at the time, he is filled with thanksgiving and joy for their partnership with him in the gospel, and with confidence in their salvation. Paul's assurance is not based upon any work of theirs, but solely upon the grace of God they have received - God will bring to completion the work he began in them. What a relief that can be to us, that God never leaves a job undone or incomplete!
Nonetheless, this confidence is no reason for complacency among believers - not for the Philippians then, nor for us today. Paul prays that the love of the saints may 'abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment' and that they might be 'filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ'.
Being partakers of grace, and partners in the gospel means abundant growth and fruitfulness in our lives. And so it is with great confidence, but not with complacency, that we who share in the ministry of Christ look forward to the day his good work in us is brought to completion.
Ray is Senior Pastor at Coromandel Baptist Church, South Australia. Before being appointed to this role in January 2012 and during his years of theological study at the Bible College of South Australia, Ray was Student Pastor at the church. Prior to this he was a high school...