10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. 11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. 14 Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction. 15 Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only. 16 For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. 17 Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account. 18 But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God. 19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. 20 Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
In verse 19 God promises to bless churches that have the right focus on world missions. We see that from the very beginning the church at Philippi was concerned for Paul and the missionary effort.
The church at Philippi had a concern for Paul and the work he was doing. They were a church that looked for opportunities to be a blessing to those who needed the Gospel. Paul says that they were full of care for him and the ministry, but they didn’t know how to give and help.
A church that is focused on world missions is content in the Lord. (v. 11-13)
Paul said that he did not need anything from the church because the Lord gave him the strength and ability to endure the ministry. There were times when the ministry was easier than other times. Paul was content in the things the Lord brought to his life. He was teaching this great missions-minded church to be content in the things they are called to do.
A church that is focused on world missions is committed to the work of Christ. (v. 14-16)
This church partook in the ministry of Paul. He had traveled from place to place and this church looked for ways to be a help and a blessing to him. They were committed to the Great Commission. They were as committed to the cause of world evangelism at the time Paul wrote this as they were when Paul started his ministry. The church at Philippi was consistent in their commitment.
A church that is focused on world missions has credit in God’s accounting. (v. 17, 18)
The Philippian Christians would benefit from the work Paul was doing. Paul said that he was thanking the church for their gifts to him—not because he wanted more stuff from them, but because he wanted them to have fruit (rewards) to be added to their account in God’s eyes. Paul said that their offering was a sweet and acceptable offering to God.
A church that is focused on world missions exists to see God and Christ glorified. (v. 20)
The whole point of this passage is not to glorify one church or to lift up the missionary, but to bring glory to God.
Are you missions-minded?
- concerned for others?
- content in the Lord?
- committed to the work of Christ?
- receiving credit in God’s accounting?
- glorifying God?
[This is adapted from a message preached by Daryl Wilson at Faith Baptist Church in Jefferson City, TN.]