Greater Progress: Change

G

reater Progress -Change #2

 

OpeningScripture: Philippians 2:13-14

Bible Challenge: Read Philippians 2 every day.

 

Philippians1:12-14

12 I want you to know, brothers,that what has happened to me has really served to advance thegospel, 13 so that it has become known throughoutthe whole imperial guard and to all the rest that myimprisonment is for Christ. 14 And most of thebrothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much morebold to speak the word without fear.

 

12 Now I want you to know, brothers andsisters, that my circumstances have turned out for the greaterprogress of the gospel (NASB).

§  Greater - Greek: mallon-much more, by far

§  Progress - Greek:prokopē - advancement or progress

 

Backdrop:

·       King Philip II of Macedonestablished Philippi, thus the name Philippi.

·       The king started the city in 356B.C., the same year his son and heir to the throne Alexander III (also known asAlexander the Great), was born.

·       Philippi's founding was tocontrol the neighboring gold mines and establish a garrison at a strategicpassage.

·       The first Christian church inEurope was founded in Philippi and established in 48-51 A.D.

·       Paul was arrested in 62 A.D. andput in a Roman prison.

·       While in prison, Paul wrotePhilippians, Ephesians, Colossians, Philemon.

·       The theme is Joy (used 5 timesESV) and Rejoice (used 8 times ESV).

 

Philippians 2:13-14

13 for it is God who works inyou, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. 14 Doall things without grumbling or disputing,

 

In Chapter2:

           Christ -is his Model (vs. 5-10)

           Holy Spirit -is his Fellowship (vs.1)

 

How many of us would like to see some real,deep changes in our lives, character, and behavior?

How many of us have tried to do it on our ownbut have failed time after time?

 

God is not only interested in helping uschange, but it is His express will to take what we are and make us who he sees!

 

Philippians 2:13 “for it is God who worksin you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”

Works Greek: energeo —the word from which we get our word energy.

It means, in the mostliteral sense, the divine energy put forth to effectively bring forth atangible, noticeable change.

 

Paul writes it as a present activeparticiple, which means this word describes God's unequivocal will tocontinually put forth power, in every momentactive atevery second that will permanently change our character, behavior, andlife.

God is thrilled when we come to Christ justas we are! He is not satisfied that we stay the way we arewhen we first come to Him!

 

The verse continues to say that it is His"good pleasure" to do this in us.

The words "good pleasure,"translated from the word eudokia, are a compound of the words eu and dokia.The word eu means depicts a feeling of deepsatisfaction — and the word dokia is the word forGod’s pleasure.

 

The new compound word means that it gives Godthe deepest gratification to take us with all our quirks,blemishes, and inconsistencies.

Taking the mess, we were when we came toChrist — and unleash His divine energeo to effectively andproductively bring forth a tangible, noticeable change in our lives thatis permanent.

God, in every moment, is releasingthis divine power to change us. There is never a second that God is not workingdeep in our hearts, souls, and character to bring us forth as more mature sonsand daughters of God — to be more like Him.

 

If God gives us the divine energy to changeand it is His good pleasure to see us change for the better, “Why is changesuch a challenge?

 

For lasting change to occur, we must separate what we are doingin Will Power versus God’s Will.

The grind happens 13 for itis God who works in you, both to will and to work for hisgood pleasure.

 

Aspirations do not create change; Application creates change.

Aspirations do not determine what we do,Application determines what we do.

 

Will power does not work! Will power is amental muscle, but it begins to fatigue over time when we work it too hard.

***Cookie Illustration - From Will Power toFalse Victory.

 

The same devil that tries to minimize the sin is the same devilthat piles on the shame! Now he tries to attach failure to ouridentity. The devil wants us to think, "We are what you did."

 

God wants us to know we are what we did notdo.

           Forgiven- Christ did it, but we are it!

           MadeNew - Christ did it, but we are it!

           MadeRighteous ­- Christ did it, but we are it!

 

Application - Choosing what is best over what we want now.

 

We do not need more things to “fix it,” weneed Grit to apply what we have committed to.

Grit is submitting to what we have already committed to. TheBible word for Grit is Discipline.

 

It is not in the knowing but in the doing that the transformationhappens. It is in the Application, not the Aspiration, wheretransformation occurs. (Living Generously)

 

If we want the celebration at the end of thestory, we need to move from the desires of Now into the Application of what wealready know.

 

God only spoke through a burning bush one time. Our nextstep is in something we already know to do.

·      It is not in a new gym membership but gettingthe Grit to put on the shoes we already have.

·      It is not in a new marriage but getting the Gritto find the good in the person living in the same house.

·      It is not in a new Bible but getting the Gritto open the one we already have.

·      It is not in a better sermon but getting the Gritto get up and go to a prayer team member.

 

We want to apply more knowledge to the lastthing He told us to do that we didn’t do.

It is in the application, where we will see the transformation.

 

Grit is not fighting to control the flesh, which is impossible.It is determining to stay surrendered.

 

Philippians 2:13-14

13 for it is God who works inyou, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. 14 Doall things without grumbling or disputing,

 

God issimply saying, "Quit fight me!" Jesus models this through Philippians2:5-10.