This third study in the series shows us the gospel heart-beat of the letter. Teachers are on show all the time at school and anyone's actions show something about who they are on the inside. So how do we be teachers who show Christ?
Read the passage Philippians (1:27-2:11) out loud and pray.
1. What do our actions show about us? And why do our actions show what we are like?
Paul is in prison for preaching about Christ, and the Philippians have been preaching and facing persecution too. They weren’t only being like Paul though. Instead, both were being like Jesus. So, for this study we’ll start with 2:6-11.
2. Read 2:6-11 again, slowly. What 2-3 words or phrases would you choose to sum up Jesus here? Which verse sticks out most to you today and why?
You might want to pause to praise God at this point.
3. In what ways do God’s actions reflect his heart in this passage?
Now look at 2:1-4. Paul is summing up the passage about Jesus in more than 2-3 words!
4. Think about your thoughts, words and actions over the last week. Can you think of times when you have been able to reflect Jesus like this? Are there moments that you would rather erase? (Share as much or as little as you want)
Have you ever been told to ‘act your age, not your shoe size’, or ‘while your school uniform is on, you are representing the school’? Paul isn’t pointing to the Philippians age or community and suggesting that they should do better. Instead, he’s referring to what he said earlier:
‘all of you share in God’s grace with me’1:7
‘filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ’ 1:11
5. What does this mean for how we should view the list of improvements Paul gives in 2:1-4?
6. Look at 1:27-30. As the Philippians ‘conduct [themselves] in a manner worth of the gospel of Christ’, what can they expect onlookers to be see about them?
7. How do you want God to change you on the inside so that your actions speak more loudly about him?
Pray about these things