Gospel Funding (Philippians 4:10-23)April 10, 2022 | Kyle Bjerga
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So therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock, the rain came down, the streams rose, the wind blew and beat against that house. It it did not fall, you get a solid foundation on the rock, and we turn to that rock this morning, God’s word, go ahead and open to Philippians chapter four. Starting in verse 10, through 23, we complete our series in the book of Philippians. This morning, what an amazing letter, amazing time walking through this these last number of weeks. Now, I’m gonna make an assumption, with so many us in the room, that you listen to some type of Christian music in your car. least one of your dials goes there. Or if you’re not a big music listener in the car, there’s some podcasts that’s a Christian podcast that you listen to. And there’s all sorts of those, of course, I want to make that assumption that we listen to these types of things. And if you do, if that’s true, you’ve heard this phrase before. Thank you for listening. If you are a listener, where am I going with this, and you would like to support our ministry, here’s the ways you can give or Welcome to the Spring pledge drive when we all then turn our car radio off. But we’re used to this in Christian ministries. We’re used to this of getting support letters from missionaries from ministries, the end of the year of fundraising, and banquets galore, at the end of the year, and just a few minutes ago, we took an offering here. And we tell you how you can give. And this is something we’re used to in the church. But oftentimes at these moments, when we start to talk about the offering, you start to hear these things in the radio or podcasts, we start to tune them out, because they’re just kind of like white noise. We hear it a lot. And then sometimes we stand back and say, you know, I get to so many things already, I can’t continue to give to this, this, this and this. And that’s true. We can’t give to everything. Or maybe you’re saying hey, I already give. And so that’s a great thing for you to to be consistent supporter of these ministries, and of course in the church. But all of this points the reality that funding is incredibly important to the mission of the church. It’s incredibly important to the mission of the church both gathered and scattered. In fact, without it just think, how effective would the church be if we didn’t have funding? How effective would we be? So this isn’t a new thing. Jesus talked about money a lot. John Piper has observed this, Jesus spoke more about money than he did about sex, Heaven and Hell. Money is a big deal to Jesus. But that’s true. And it is that money should be a big deal for us. I don’t like saying that. And you probably don’t like hearing that. But it’s the reality, funding matters in the kingdom of God. It matters because behind the finances are people. Like that’s where the finances, that’s where the gifts, that’s where everything’s coming from is us, is you. And so it matters. Because when churches closed, when missionaries have to come home, when ministry is closed, and they can’t go, what do they say, our finance, our finances weren’t there, which means our people weren’t there. That’s what that means, because they’re not getting money from anywhere else. It’s coming from people. So what’s the point this morning, the point is, if we want to see the gospel advance, which we do, which we’ve seen in this letter, so far, we want to see the gospel advance, there must be a team of people behind us funding the mission. And we need to be a part of that team. So last week, Paul finishes up in verse nine by saying whatever you have learned or received or heard from me or seen in me, put into practice, and the God of peace will be with you. So as we turn just to the next verse here, right after he says that, we need to be thinking, are there things that we need to see things we need to have modeled for us? And I think we do we have three different models. In our passage, as we close out this letter this morning, you’ll see it in your notes, a model of contentment, a model of giving a model of receiving, and all of these models are seen in the context of gospel funding. So on the screen, you’re gonna see this, this should be very familiar to you. This is the summary statement from the entire series that we’ve had so far. To advance the gospel, we must emulate Christ. And Paul, despite opposition for our joy, and God’s glory. And I want to add, we have Christ and Paul and this morning we want to emulate the Philippian church. Okay, we want to emulate the Philippian church and you’ll see why here in just a moment. But let’s read verses 10 through 13 and see a model of contentment. I Rejoice greatly in the Lord that Alas, you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned but you had no opportunity to show it. I am not saying this because I am in need for I’ve learned to be content whatever the circumstances, I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all This through Him who gives me strength.
Paul has rejoiced throughout this letter. Here he is, again, rejoicing for this gift and the care of the Philippian. Church of these believers. He’s received their gift from a Pafford itis who brought it to him? And why is it taking so long for them to give? We don’t know. But if you think about it, the time was a little bit different back then maybe they didn’t have the means. And Paul was always moving around. So maybe they didn’t know where he was. Now he’s in prison. So they have pretty good sense. He’s not going out for a while. And there’s no Pay Pal. There’s no Zell you can’t Venmo Paul money. It’s not a thing. So here we go. There’s this reason why they haven’t. But Paul knows something. He’s not bitter. Like at last, you renewed your concern for me. He says you renewed your concern for me. And you had, you didn’t have the opportunity to show it. So he knows their care is there. So he wants to make sure they know that he appreciates their care, this tangible support. And you know, as the Philippians are reading this letter out loud to all the people there that are gathered, they if they stopped here, they may think that this financial support can just in the nick of time, like oh, yes, Paul got it. And he really, really needs it right now. But Paul is going to disappoint them. Because he says I am content, whether that gift came or didn’t. I am content. That’s what he tells them. And we have this huge model of contentment here in Paul that we’ve seen throughout the letter, but he kind of explicitly states here. And so in verses 11 and 12, they’re basically the same thing. He’s basically saying the same thing. But it can come across as confusing. Because in verse 11, he says, I am not in need. And then in verse 12, he says, I know what it is to be in need. And then he says, I’m living in plenty or want, seems like need. And then in verse 16, we’re going to read, he says he had need, then you think about the context where he’s writing this, he’s in prison, I would assume that is a need. So you’re kind of confused at this. But at this stage in his life, after the years of following Jesus and serving the church, Paul has learned intellectually, and experientially, how to be content in any and every circumstance. And that has drastically changed his definition of need. Okay, it’s changed his definition of what is a need. Why? Because the circumstances that everyone sees, well fed or hungry, being in plenty or want are all outward appearances. And contentment comes from inside. Alright, so people can see these things. But here’s Paul living in contentment. So we need to answer the question, what is being content? What does that mean? And I’m gonna borrow here from Eric Raymond, who borrowed from some other Puritans, especially in this definition of contentment. He says, contentment is the inward, gracious, quiet spirit that joyfully rests in God’s providence. And you know, people who are content, and you can see it in their face. You can see it in their face that they are content. It’s inward. Its gracious, it’s quiet spirit, that dress and who God is in His providence. So how did Paul learn to be content because he had to learn this? Let’s take the extremes of Paul’s life. Okay, let’s look at plenty and let’s look at want. Let’s look at welfare. And let’s look at Hungary. And we can go to all sorts of places actually, Paul lists and things in his life like full out list of things that went wrong in his ministry, right, that looked bad in his ministry. But I want to go back to Acts 16. Because in Acts 16, this is the first time Paul arrives in Philippi. This is where the church starts. So what did Paul experience there, he experienced some pretty big extremes in his first visit to Philippi. So to start, he goes and shares the gospel, some women who are praying, and one of them Lydia comes to faith in Jesus as he’s talking. Now, it says that she’s a dealer of purple cloth. So chances are she had some money. And she had a house big enough to invite Paul and all his companions back to stay with them. And so here’s Paul being well fed, taken care of has a place to stay. Then what happens over the next few days and weeks, there’s a slave girl who is following Paul and his companions, and she is yelling at them and screaming at them. And she kind of had this kind of look into the future type of thing, demon possession, and she was owned by some slave owners. And so she’s yelling at them about who they are. And Paul, it says in Acts 16, gets annoyed with her turns around and says, leaf. Alright, so he cast the demon out. Well, the slave owners don’t like that. So what do they do? They bring Paul and Silas to the leaders in the town. And what are the leaders do? They have them stripped? They have been beaten with rods, then they’re flogged and then they’re thrown into Prison.
From Lydia’s house to prison. He is in need. He is in one he has been brought low. And in prison, Paul and Silas, what are they start doing? Start singing. They start singing, and this earthquake comes, and the locks go down and the doors open. And there’s like freedom here. And the jailer wants in his own life, because he knows he’s in trouble with all these prisoners flee. And what do they say we’re still here. And at that moment, that jailer says, What must I do to be saved? believe, repent and believe in the gospel. And he is saved. And what does this man do was his jailer do? Hey, guys, come back to my house for some food? You see, just even in that moment, Paul is going from one extreme to the other. And just a short passage. Now. So here’s the if there’s plenty and there’s want and well fed and hungry for Paul, where do we usually operate? Like our extremes are like kind of more here? Right? I mean, if we’re being honest, how hungry Have you been? Not Paul type hungry for the most part, I would guess. And so we operate on this like smaller extreme, which means when something bad happens over here, it changes everything. We don’t know how to live in that. Like if you if you’ve had everything you’ve ever wanted, and now everything is stripped away, we don’t know how to operate in that. I don’t think Paul did either. So he had to learn it, he had to learn to be content, and we will need to learn to be content to we need to see that gap wide and understand what are the true extremes, we operate much more on the poverty, or sorry, on the plenty of the spectrum than we ever do the want. And if we compare that to the world, we’re definitely way over here. So what is our spectrum that we’re on? But what Paul saying is, it doesn’t matter. Whatever the extreme is, I am content, I have learned the secret to being content. Now, what’s the secret? Because we don’t like secrets don’t keep secrets from us. So as Paul knows something that we can’t know. And I don’t think that’s true. There isn’t a secret handshake to find out the secret to contentment. So what is it? Well, look back in your bibles Philippians, three, seven through eight. This is the secret. This is what Paul has learned and what we need to learn as well. But whatever were gains to me, I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus, right, the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus, my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things, I consider them garbage that I may gain Christ. This is the secret, we’ve already been given the secret in the letter, Paul has learned this, the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus. That’s what it is. And that’s what we need to learn to come to that point to say plenty or want all of his garbage compared to Christ. That’s the secret to contentment. So then we can stand up with Paul and say, I can do all things. Not all things. All of this, look at how the NIV translate this, I can do all this verse 13, through Him who gives me strength. This is one of the most quoted verses in the Bible, and one of the ones that’s wrenched out of context more than any other. Okay? It does not mean that Christians benchpress more than the atheist next to them. It doesn’t, if you write it on your shoes in a basketball game, you’re not going to be able to dunk if you’ve never done it before. But that’s how this verse is often used. But the NIV I love how it says, I can do all this, what is this? This is plenty want, well fed, or hungry? That’s what we’re getting at. I can do all of this. I can live in all these circumstances. Because I have Christ because my contentment is found in him. So the all things that maybe you’ve memorized his verses is restricted by the context. Because this is what Paul is saying when he gets that verse. And when you know that you’re like, wow, that changes everything. Within every view this verse so everything he just shared.
He can do through the strength that Christ gives him. Now one way contend that worked itself out in Paul’s life was his flexibility permission. Okay, it’s flexibility permission. Paul was not scared to go places. And I don’t mean that like he didn’t, you know, I’m just saying like, he went, right. He went to these different places. And he followed wherever God’s call was on his life. And the reason was because he’s content because no matter where he goes, he knows there’s gonna be plenty and want there’s gonna be welfare and there’s gonna be hungry, but he goes anyways because he’s content regardless of where he finds himself. So a couple of examples of this one of The plenty. In chapter one, Paul says it’s better by far to depart from this life and be with Jesus. That’s what we studied weeks and weeks ago now. Yet he says he’s convinced that his time hasn’t come. And he knows he will remain for fruitful labor because it will bring joy to His life and the lives of others as they boast in Christ Jesus. So he’s content, stayin in ministry, and if that’s what God has called him to, to have this ministry, and then what about in the want, in Acts 20, verse 23, is Paul’s talking to the Ephesian elders, he says this, I only know that in every city, the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me. My only aim is to finish the race and complete the task Lord Jesus has given me so he knows in the one like I’m heading into places that the Holy Spirit says prison and hardship is coming. And what does he do? He goes, because it’s not about the circumstances, but his contentment in Jesus Christ. So he is flexible for the mission. So the question for us is, how flexible permission are we? How flexible are we to be moved out of our comfort zone in different situations and circumstances of life? Because if we’re not flexible, we need to look at are we being content? Are we content in Jesus? Or are we more so operate in this little small sliver here of this spectrum, and saying, that’s kind of outside the bounds of what I can kind of deal with? Where’s the Lord calling you? Was he telling you to do if you’re not flexible for the mission, we need to look at our contentment. Because we can do all that God calls us to do in living the Christian life when we are content in him. That’s what verse 13 means. So we must emulate Paul and his contentment. Next, we see a model of giving look at verses 14 through 16. Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles. Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out for Macedonia, not one church shared with me, in the matter of giving and receiving except you only for even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me aid more than once, when I was in need. So Paul’s content, he’s just told them that, right? That’s what he’s been sharing with them. When was he do then does he rebuked them for sending the gifts? No, he says, This is good. Right? This is good that you’ve sent these gifts. And you kind of think back to our own lives, we sometimes can convince ourselves not to give because all that person has everything they need. Or Amen, the church looks like they’re doing really well. So I can just kind of hold back a little bit this month, are you know, they keep telling me they don’t need anything. So I’m just not gonna give it. Now, what does Paul do here, he says, it’s good for you. It’s good that you’ve shared my troubles. It’s good that you’ve shared this gift with me. He doesn’t want the Philippians to have that attitude. And it says here that you shared with me. Other translations will say you entered into partnership with me. You entered into partnership with me. And that’s important. What led them there, their acquaintance with the gospel, when the gospel message came, their hands started to open. Right when the gospel message got into their hearts, their hands started to open. So instead of their comfortable lives, they were about the advance of the gospel. They knew Paul was doing that. So let’s give to Paul. And that mission, they gave to him right away, right after he left, they ended up sending money kind of following him to vessel Annika. And they gave him the money. Now we have some time between then, and there is more. But they kind of have this immediate response at first, and now they renew their commitment. So the gospel gets ahold of hearts, which means it gets a hold of our gifts, gets a hold of our gifts at the same time. And then the gospel gave them a vision. The Gospel gave the Flipkens a vision for gospel advance and they saw Paul and Silas and his companions doing that work. And they were excited to get behind it. So the Philippian church is definitely a church we want to emulate. Definitely. So can I bring some encouragement to you guys as a church today? Because after the contentment talk, you’re probably Oh boy. I am not content.
Let’s at least what my heart was saying this week, that I’m not content. So let me bring some encouragement this morning. Because I don’t want you to be beaten down. It’s true. We need to work on that individually in our contentment. But in the spirit of Paul, I want to say that the elders of this church are incredibly grateful for you, and rejoicing in the Lord, for you and for your gifts. So individually, yes, there’s stuff we can work on. But when I talk to other pastors, or other church members of different churches in the area, I boast in the Lord about this church for all sorts of different areas, but especially in this one. So let me walk you through some of what we talked about. So let’s just look at the last two years with COVID. Okay, what is what has happened since then, the first thing is, when everybody else was worried about money, when everybody else was worried about where they’re gonna get different things from and these resources are going to come in, you guys just continue to give. And so what were we able to do with ici if you remember, we were able to kind of provide this classroom with computers and the Internet and tutors for them to be able to do school outside of their home because they maybe didn’t have those things in their home. And that was funded through your gifts. Explore God. Nationwide ministry reaching people who aren’t have questions about God, these big questions of life, and we were able to give them a substantial amount of money at a time where they really really needed it. To meet the needs of the people that were out there who are asking questions about Jesus, people, we would never reach here in Elmhurst, unless we were connected to a ministry like that. Through your gifts, how about helping to plant a church financially, getting behind Jonathan, and all peoples church and Glendale heights? I mean, imagine a church planter coming to a church during COVID and saying, Hey, can you help support me financially? And we were able to say, yes, because your gifts, will send out missionaries, Mike Marina Schenck just arrived in Bolivia after going through Guatemala for a little while. We sent them out as a church, right with Grace Bible Church down the road. And we were able as two churches to be able to say, yes, we believe in the mission and the advancement of the gospel. And guess what we have funding? We can help you. Because your gifts, starting tap, I was branded, I talked about starting a new ministry that’s reaching those who are in poverty. And then look around city New. We did a whole campaign during COVID. Like, again, we’re boasting in the Lord, because it’s his work. Because the gospel is affected your hearts, not because we’re twisting your arms. Right, he has changed our hearts and open up our hands to the advancement of the gospel. Ukraine. Hey, guys, we’re gonna take money from fellowship fund and give to Ukraine and then anything that comes in. But beyond that the what we need to kind of help people out in our area is going to go to Ukraine, and what do you do in four weeks $14,000. We’re looking at hiring new staff, I can tell you not every church is looking at hiring new staff at this time. So what do we do with all that? We rejoice in the Lord. Like what else is there to do? We rejoice the gospel is advanced because of your gifts. But here’s the amazing thing. There’s still work to do. There’s still work to do, and will always be going until Jesus returns. So we must continue to believe in the mission God has given us to people in our lives to our community, we need to advance the gospel and all that costs money. All of it requires funding. Right? But what we’re doing in that moment is what gospel events happens when that funding happens. We’re pushing away the darkness and bringing light into the worlds we share the Good News of Jesus. So gospel advance has always required gospel funding. So we must emulate the Philippians. And their church and the gibbon and I believe we are. And I hope you take great encouragement from that this morning. Let’s look at a model of receiving, starting in verse 17, through the end of the chapter. Not that I desire your gifts, what I desire is that more be credited to your account. I have received full payments and have more than enough I am amply supplied. Now that I’ve received from a Pafford itis the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering an acceptable sacrifice pleasing to God. And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus, to God, to our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen. Greet all God’s people in Christ Jesus, the brothers and sisters who are with me send greetings. All God’s people here send you greetings, especially those who belong to Caesar’s household, the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, be with your spirit.
So a model of receiving your Paul receives their gifts, he takes them, he doesn’t send them back. He accepts them with joy, because it’s good that they’re partnering with him. It’s a testimony of the work God is doing in their life. So who is he to say, take that money back? The gospels changed them so they’re giving. And so he praises the Lord for that. And he says, Now I’m amply supplied, what would have to happen back then when you’re in prison as your food came from other people, like they didn’t have these nice meals in the prison for you. So now he’s got money. Now he’s got some help to be able to eat so he says I’m amply supplied, his circumstances change and yet his contentment hasn’t. It stayed the same because it’s always been in Christ. He has what he needs, and he’s still content. And here’s Paul in prison with these gifts and he is more concerned about the interests of the Philippians in this moment, he’s concerned about what they’re going to get as a result of their gifts to Him. If We can boil it down the Philippians are storing up for themselves treasures in heaven, not on Earth. That’s what they’re doing. That’s what they know. That’s what they understand through the gospel. Some of you are familiar with Pastor Aleister bag. He says that it’s not a bad idea that Christians have IRAs, right, individual retirement accounts, but all Christians should have IE as individual eternal accounts. And he asked what’s in it? What’s in it? And when was the last time you made a contribution to it? What was the last time he said, I’m gonna do this for the Kingdom? I’m gonna do this historic treasures in heaven, not on Earth. And I love those questions. Because when we do this, when we store for ourselves treasures in heaven, we actually live out what Paul has been saying here, all this whole time, this whole letter, you are citizens of heaven. So start to get ready. Your citizens of heaven store up for yourselves treasures in heaven. That’s what he’s been showing throughout this letter. So Paul receives their gifts. But it’s even more important what happens next, because the letter changes, he starts saying how God is receiving their gifts. So our giving reflects a change life. It’s a recognition of what the Lord has done in us. And now, Paul, this Philippians know that in his contentment, he is thankful and rejoicing for their gifts, and that God, who, by the way, is more content than anyone. God has more content in himself than anybody else. He is still pleased with their gift. He’s pleased with what they’ve given. It is a fragrant offering, and sacrifice to him. Now, obviously, I’m here to thinking okay, Old Testament. So they were to offer these fragrant offerings to the Lord, they were supposed to offer these sacrifices to him as a way of worship. So here they’re giving financially. And it’s seen as equal to those gifts in the Old Testament, that God sees their gifts. And it’s like a fragrant offering. It’s like a sacrifice to him. There’s one other time fragrant often is used in the New Testament. It’s also in Paul in Ephesians, five. So you’ll see it here on the screen, says follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children, and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering, and sacrifice to God. So what Paul is doing is he’s describing Jesus’s love for us. And what he did, by offering his life as equal to our gifts to God. Do you catch that? Like what Jesus did the fragrant offering and sacrifice of His life, and the Philippians are hearing, that’s what your gift is. It’s a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God, it pleased the Lord. So God being content in himself can still be pleased with what we give, he doesn’t need our gifts. He doesn’t need them. He’s content. But he does use our gifts. And it’s good for us to give and he’s still pleased when we give. So as a parent, you get a lot of gifts, gifts from your kids, right? And they’re constantly things up to them. I have never needed any of their gifts. Like it hasn’t made my life easier, or anything like that. But I have piles and piles of stuff at home that they’ve made me. Why? Because they thought about me. Because in that moment, they were thinking I want to give this to dad. And that that’s pleasing. Right? So the Lord sees our gifts, and he’s like, that’s great. If it was $1 for a million dollars. I’m just pleased you brought it. And that’s what we’re doing. When we give our offering. That’s what’s happening. We’re pleasing God, because we’re showing our hearts. And then verse 18 is one of those promises that seems really hard for us to grasp. Will God really meet all our needs? Will he I mean, Paul even says there have been times of need and hunger in his life.
So the promise here is one that changes when our understanding of contentment changes of what again, it really means to be in need. So to understand this promise, we must look at where this generosity of God is giving us or where it’s grounded. So Second Corinthians eight, verse nine, which was read for us earlier, says for you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake, he became poor. So that so that you through his poverty might become rich. So you remember the extremes, like our extremes? And Paul’s extremes? How about I can’t push out that far, the extremes of what it was for Jesus to leave the riches of heaven, to come to poverty, to come as a human to suffer with us to be in need. Like imagine those extremes. And that’s what Second Corinthians eight is telling us. The extremes of coming from the glories of heaven, the riches having to come here to die and hang on a cross. And extreme that we don’t have to go through, because he did. That deserves rejoicing. That deserves rejoicing. Because those extremes for the Son of God are things we cannot even comprehend. And then through the resurrection, and now being in him in Christ Jesus, we now get the riches we don’t deserve. So we avoid that. And we get all of this forever. And we did nothing, nothing to earn that, or deserve that. So how can we not now open our hands? We know that is true. He will give us our daily bread will give us what we need for today. You’ll never run out, because he never runs out. But then you think well, what about those Christians that are persecuted? What about the Christians who have given their life for Christ? Sure seems like their needs weren’t met in that moment, not what we remember what Paul said in Philippians 121. For to me to live as Christ, and to die is gain. Everything shifts, our understanding of everything shifts with the gospel, we don’t see death as an end, at least not in the way that many people do. It’s the start, it’s going to be better. So we don’t even see those things in the same way as everybody else around us. And that’s when they see us and like how can you be so content, because to live as Christ to die is gain, if there is a statement of contentment in the Bible is that one, it is that one. Everything changes our perspective of plenty and want and well fed and hungry changes. So the truth is, according to Eric Raymond, we deserve hell, and we get mercy. Certainly, you can see how this would inform understanding of contentment. When you deserve hell, anything else is cause for celebration. Anything, whether plenty or wants, well fed or hungry, lots of money, or no money, all of it is cause for celebration, we grasp where we were, and what Jesus did for us. And then Paul says, to God, to our God, and father be glory forever and ever. God will give us what we need to be content in Him and to advance the gospel because it’s for His glory. Like, he’s not gonna let us fail. Because it’s his name. It’s his plan. It’s his mission. So he will give us what we need. Because it’s not about us anyways. Because people have been advancing the gospel far, but a lot of wait longer before any of us got here. And we pray that many more people advance the gospel after us. So his glory doesn’t depend on it. Right, his glory doesn’t depend on it. But what happens in the events the gospel is it brings more and more people into the kingdom of God, which means more and more people rejoicing in him. More and more people are saying he is glorious, he is beautiful, he is worthy of our praise, more people who treasure Jesus, who live out Philippians, three, seven through eight. So we must emulate Christ, who gave up everything for us. And now we get to give back our riches, our gifts to see the gospel advance. So let’s pull this all together. Gospel advance is what the Lord is after seeing his news get out. So we need to remember, are we flexible for the mission. And that requires contentment. We need to be reminded that the evidence of our faith is how open our hands are. We want people to see that we see things differently than them. And we give it to the Lord for his mission. And then we find the mission to worship and please God, not because he needs it. But he’s invited us in to join. And we’re on this team together.
And if you’re here this morning, and this is the first you’re hearing about Jesus, or you’re checking things out, and we’re so glad to have you hear. And I hope, I hope that you see what this church is about. And that is about getting the good news to those who need to hear it, which is you if you don’t know it. That’s what we’re about. And I hope all of us have come face to face with that discontent in our life. And see how Jesus brings that true satisfaction. And that permanent circumstance in our life. When everything else is going on when everything else is changing when the plenty and wants and the hunger and the welfare is there. We are content in Christ. Let’s pray. As we pray, we’re going to have some time just to confess. So I’m just going to read some statements and I would ask that you would just say these if these are true of your heart, if you want to come Fast this in this moment. Lord, I confess I have discontent in the plenty.
Lord, I confess that I have discontent in the want in the need.
Lord, I confess the many times that desire temporary things over eternal things, storing up for myself treasures on earth and not in heaven.
Lord, I confess that I have been inflexible for your mission.
Lord, we thank You. We thank you for the gospel. We thank you for the truth that we heard about this morning, that Jesus left the glory, the riches of heaven, to come and be poor, to come and have need so that we could experience those riches of heaven as CO heirs with Christ. Help us to know that we are citizens of heaven help that to change the way we view our gifts. The things you have given us in this life. Help us to go from here excited to be a part of your mission, whether that’s with our hands, whether that’s with their money, whether that’s with our time. We want to be the type of church that others emulate. Not because we give so much because we’ve been so changed. So change by the gospel. Jesus, we love you. We pray this in Your name, amen.
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