Welcome to Week One of our online Inductive Bible study on the Book of Philippians “That I May Know Him” by Kay Arthur and David Lawson. This first week of study was an overview of the entire book of Philippians. As we discovered in our study time this week, Paul wrote this letter of encouragement to the church in Philippi. His consistent theme throughout Philippians is a journey of joy despite events surrounding the here and now.
Philippians is a call to see beyond our current circumstances.
Paul’s letter to the Philippians teaches us about genuine Christian living. This is what we are going to discover over the next couple of weeks as we dig deep into Philippians to discover how this message will impact our lives today.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could experience joy in spite of pain and betrayal…in spite of financial difficulties and health issues….in spite of rejection and divorce…in spite of the death of a loved one? Paul suffered. Jesus Christ suffered. And we will likewise suffer in our present age.
Let’s face it, life is tough, and as Christians, we are not promised a bed of roses. However, we can look beyond our present circumstances and experience joy that’s beyond our wildest imagination. This is the encouraging message that Paul conveys in his letter to the Philippians, and it’s a message of hope for us today. Our joy doesn’t come from the events surrounding us, because our joy is rooted in the future when we are face-to-face with Jesus Christ, when we are made complete in Him. This is the message that Paul conveys throughout this short letter to the Philippians:
“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6
“Holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ, I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain.” Philippians 2:16
“For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.” Philippians 3:30
“The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” Philippians 4:5-6
So, as we begin our journey together through this powerful book of Philippians, let’s grasp hold of these golden nuggets of truths that we can deposit in the bank of our hearts. We do not have to wring our hands in worry and despair, because we have a wonderful Savior who promises to never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5).
Kay Arthur writes in the Thought for the Week: “Wouldn’t it be wonderful to live in such a way that, with confidence, you could say the very words recorded for eternity by the apostle Paul, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” Wouldn’t it be wonderful to know that your life had been spent for the defense of the gospel?”
Join us in our private Facebook group this week to share together what we have learned in our study this week. It is going to be amazing! I can hardly wait!
BIBLE STUDY TIP: As you progress through your study of Philippians, write in your notebook or journal any questions that come to mind so you do not forget them. Leave space for the answers God will provide in the coming weeks.
DIGGING DEEPER: Write Chapter 1 of Philippians in your notebook or journal.
ASSIGNMENT FOR THE FORTHCOMING WEEK:
- Join a Small Group and fellowship with your fellow Bible students.
- Complete your study of Week Two, “Is Joy Possible Even When I Feel Imprisoned by My Circumstances?” Follow the instructions for the daily assignments.
- Pray before you begin your study. Ask your resident Teacher, the Holy Spirit, to open your heart to wisdom and understanding to learn His truths.
- Store in your heart Philippians 1:21 (Week One, Day Seven). A “Store in Your Heart” form is located in “Files” in the Inductive Studies chat room.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FOR WEEK ONE (answer in small groups or post a comment below:
- This first week we read through the entire book of Philippians. What were some of the first impressions you recorded in your notebook after reading through the book of Philippians?
- In Chapter 1:1, Paul introduces himself and Timothy as bond-servants of Christ Jesus. What does it mean to be a bond-servant of Christ? Do you consider yourself a bond-servant of Christ Jesus? Why or why not?
- What would you say is the purpose of Paul’s letter to the Philippians? Does this letter apply to us today? Why or why not?
- How do you suppose Paul could write this merry letter from behind bars? What was his attitude or mind? (Hint: Philippians 1:21).
- What did you learn about Paul this week that you would like to see mirrored in your own life?
Praying for you,