Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. (Philippians 1:27-28)
What makes a life worthy? How do you know if your life was a success? What does your “best life” really look like? In his letter to the Philippian church, the apostle Paul tells us the true measure of success: a worthy life looks a lot like Jesus’ life. That’s what it means to live “worthy of the gospel of Christ” (Phil. 1:27). Being gospel-worthy means being shaped by the good news (gospel) of what God has done in Jesus Christ—it means having a gospel-shaped life. A worthy life is not discovered by “writing your own story” but by embracing the gospel story; not by “forging your own path” through life but by choosing a well-worn path—the path of Jesus and those who have truly followed him.
The apostle Paul’s call to live a gospel-worthy life is just as urgent today as it was in the first century. In our day, as in Paul’s day, the church faces the twin threats of external opposition and internal division. Both have the power to fracture the community of faith and derail it from its mission of making disciples. Only by embracing a gospel-worthy way of life—the life modeled by Jesus—can the church survive and fulfill its mission, because only gospel-worthy people stand firm and stand together. Join us as we study Paul’s letter to the Philippians and embrace gospel-worthy living together.
How to Prepare for Sunday
Want to get the most out of our time in Philippians? Here at First Free, we believe that “the Word does the work.” The Holy Spirit uses the Word of God to form us into gospel-worthy people. But in order for the Word to do its work, it has to get into us, and that happens best when we’re engaging with Scripture throughout the week. Here are a few suggestions to help you do just that.
Read the entire book once per week. If you want to really understand a book of the Bible, it’s a good idea to read it in its entirety from time to time. This is especially true of letters like Philippians. After all, you would never write a letter to someone and expect them to read just a few sentences each week. The great thing about a book like Philippians is that you can read (or listen to) the whole thing in less than 15 minutes. We encourage you to set aside a little time each week to read through Philippians in one sitting.
Read the sermon passage ahead of time. This is just a good learning strategy. Think of it like doing the assigned readings before coming to class. Nobody’s going to grade you on whether or not you read, but you’ll get more out of the teaching if you do. (You can find the series schedule below.)
Memorize a key passage. Choose a passage from Philippians that’s meaningful to you or that helps you recall some of the main themes of the book. Philippians 2:1-11 is a great choice for a longer passage. It paints a beautiful picture of Christ’s work on our behalf and sets the gospel-shaped pattern for our own lives in the community of faith.
Join a Community Group. Many of our groups make it a habit to discuss the sermon each week. Besides being another great learning strategy, this gives a space for us to think together about how to live out the implications of Scripture. It’s also a space to ask questions, encourage, and challenge one another. Talk to Pastor Jordan Green if you’re interested in joining a group.
Feb. 17 - Phil. 1:1-11
Feb. 24 - Phil. 1:12-26
Mar. 3 - Phil. 1:27-2:11
Mar. 10 - Phil. 2:12-18
Mar. 17 - Phil. 2:19-30
Mar. 24 - Phil. 3:1-21
Mar. 31 - Phil. 4:1-9
Apr. 7 - Phil. 4:10-20