Introduction To Philippians
Where is The Prize Revealed?
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
In the Greek there is just one word for the phrase inspiration of God. That word means God-breathed. So Scripture is given, not just something written by man, but given to man by God. Men acted as secretaries as God dictated to them. These men did not always understand what they were writing, but were faithful to obey God.
PROFITABLE. They are worth looking into.
1. Doctrine. Doctrine is teaching. Much that we learn comes from teaching. That learning is good if it has been correctly taught. There can also be false doctrine, taught by liars and evil spirits. But the doctrine we find in The Book is good doctrine, the profitable kind.
2. Reproof. This we do not like. But it can be very profitable if we will but take it. The Bible reproves people of sin. That is why so many will not read it. It is a mirror in which we can see ourselves as we really are. It does not flatter.
3. Correction. We do not always like this either. We like to go our own way. But the Word is a corrective, turning us from our own ways and the crooked paths to the straight one. Our speech needs correction. Our activities need guidance and correction: Our worship and service also need it.
4. Instruction in righteousness. It seems that man's imagination is continually evil. It comes naturally. When it comes to righteousness, or rather doing right, he needs instruction. He has to be taught it. And The Word does just that. Things that the natural man might think to be right are not found right according to the standard of the Word. The first step in doing right is to love. No step that is profitable can be made till this first one is made. Even the 10 words for Israel demand love for God and for fellow men.
THE GOAL. All the above leads up to something.
1. That the man of God may be perfect. Left to his own devices, man goes the downward grade. His progress has always been the opposite of evolution. The sons of Adam were highly civilized, but they soon went back and many lived in caves and used the crudest of tools and weapons. They killed and often ate each other. But the measure of the perfection of man is The One Who was the express image of God, Christ. Civilization does not make a man perfect. It is an inner work by the Spirit.
2. Thoroughly furnished unto all good works. We are reminded in Eph 2:10 that the man who is saved is created unto good works. Not only do we have to find what these good works are, but we have to be trained to do them. We also have to have the tools with which to work. All these things are furnished by the Scriptures. There is no other way to attain unto this goal then by a reading and study of the Scriptures. So let's get busy!
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