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Philippians

12.16.2010

It’s been a long time in coming, and you’ve been introduced to some of the runners up (Isaiah, John, Romans, Philemon), but Philippians really is my favorite book in the Bible.  It was among the first that I read independently.  Later, it was the topic of the first Bible study I was ever a part of.  It’s the only book on which I own a book-specific commentary (John MacArthur!)

If Romans is the closest thing that the Bible provides to a comprehensive theological statement, Philippians is the closest thing it has to a handbook for Christian living.  People who look to the Bible as an instruction manual are disappointed as they wade through arcane ritual laws in Leviticus, through seemingly pointless geneologies in Chronicles, even though trite* platitudes in Proverbs.  But Philippians is, while certainly not complete in itself, the nearest thing in the Bible. 

Early on in my career as an analyst and writer, I was taught that every paper needs to address two questions: ‘Oh, yeah?’ and, ‘So what?’  Romans is Paul’s answer to, ‘Oh, yeah?’  Philippians is his, ‘So what?’

In my experience, Philippians punches far above its weight in terms of memory verses, at least as a ratio to total verses.  It’s memory verse central up in Philippi.  Since I most certainly will want to break this book down in the future,** I’ll limit myself here to listing the memory verses that I could remember from the book:

1:6 | And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

1:21 | For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

2:5-11 | Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made Himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  And being found in human form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

2:12-13 | Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

3:7 | But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ.

3:14 | I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

4:4 | Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.

4:6-7 | Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

4:8 | Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

4:13 | I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

————

* [dodges lightning bolt]

** Ooh!  Maybe even sentence diagramming!

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From → [memory], [overview]

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