This message was the second part of the ‘In This Together’ series on the book of Philippians, preached at Christ Church Manchester’s church in Fallowfield in early 2017. The full series included the following sermons:
- Partnership in the Gospel (by Dave Williams) – Philippians 1:1-11
- Gospel Advance (by Colin Baron) – Philippians 1:12-30
- Humble Like Jesus (by Josh Di Fabio) – Philippians 2:1-11
- Act, Rest, Shine (by Alastair Barrie) – Philippians 2:12-18
- Sending & Being Sent (by Dave Williams) – Philippians 2:19-30
- Straining Towards the Goal (by Emily Williams) – Philippians 3:12-4:1
- Church Family (by Eleisha Bates) – Philippians 4:21-23
This sermon was based on Philippians 1:12-30.
The Advance of the Gospel
12I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, 13so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. 14And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
15Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. 16The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17The former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment. 18What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice.
To Live Is Christ
Yes, and I will rejoice, 19for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. 21For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. 23I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. 24But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. 25Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, 26so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.
27Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. 29For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, 30engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.