Posts Tagged 'Philippians'

Whatever Is Excellent

Whatever Is Excellent Sermon Audio Here
the Whatevers of Philippians 4:8
2 Peter 1:1-7

The name Stradivarius is synonymous with fine violins. This is true because Antonius Stradivarius insisted that no instrument constructed in his shop be sold until it was as near perfection as human care and skill could make it. Stradivarius observed, “God needs violins to send His music into the world, and if any violins are defective God’s music will be spoiled.” His work philosophy was summed up in one sentence: “Other men will make other violins, but no man shall make a better one.”

As We Search For Whatever Is Excellent:

We See It In The Specific Act of Praise
Often used to describe the use of God’s power:

For our response of praise of God in Isaiah:

We Carry It In Our Consciousness of God’s Power
2 Peter 1:1-7 ~ We see God’s power in our knowledge of Him

  • v2 abundant grace through knowledge of God
  • v3 His empowering knowledge is sufficient for life
  • v4 we participate in God’s nature; we live on His turf
  • v5-7 “to add to”=epichorēgéō to add steps to the dance of life: aid, minister

Journalist Edwin Bliss once said, “The pursuit of excellence is gratifying and healthy. The pursuit of perfection is frustrating, neurotic, and a terrible waste of time.”

As we move through life, we Remember God’s Excellence in Praise, and we Dance Into the fullness of God’s Kingdom Through Knowledge.

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Whatever Is Noble

Whatever Is Noble Sermon Audio Here
the Whatevers of Philippians 4:8

II Timothy 2:19-21

I wondered why “Noble” gases gasses were called that, and when I did the research, I found they are so named because of their extremely low reactivity. This gives us an insight into Philippians 4:8; to be noble is to not overly react to exterior circumstances.

What is Nobility?

An Attitude Worthy of Respect

  • Phil. 4:8 (adjective – Honorable. Old word – to worship, revere. So revered, venerated.)
  • 1 Tim. 3:1, 8-13 – Character qualities to possess for service
  • Titus 2:2 – qualities to be learned, regardless of age
  • “worthy of respect” RESULT of long term life of worshipful attitude (keeping God in his rightful place in our lives)

A Purpose Worthy of Value

  • 2 Tim. 2:19-21 – cleanse ourselves from what is reproachful & vile
  • “noble purposes” value, dignity, honor – what is our way of life WORTH? What is our VALUE?

A Choice To Give Honor Away

  • Lev. 19:32 – A positive choice in a negative world
  • Prov. 25:6 – a negative warning in a delicate situation
  • “show respect” Hebrew word means “to swell with pride” – to show pride in OTHER’s accomplishments is noble (not self-effacing/putting ourselves down, but building up those around us)

A Recognition of God’s Working

  • Isaiah 45:2 – God goes before us to make things aright
  • “level the mountains” KJV – make the crooked straight – God alone is ultimately worthy of honor;

God alone will set things straight, and when we think about His work in us and among us, we are focusing on what is valuable, what is worthy of respect, and what draws us back to worship

Giving Thankful Thoughts

Deuteronomy 26:1-4; 10-11
When you come into the land that the LORD your God is giving you for an inheritance and have taken possession of it and live in it, you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from your land that the LORD your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket, and you shall go to the place that the LORD your God will choose, to make his name to dwell there.

And you shall go to the priest who is in office at that time and say to him, ‘I declare today to the LORD your God that I have come into the land that the LORD swore to our fathers to give us.’ Then the priest shall take the basket from your hand and set it down before the altar of the LORD your God.
(And you will say) “And behold, now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground, which you, O LORD, have given me.” And you shall set it down before the LORD your God and worship before the LORD your God. And you shall rejoice in all the good that the LORD your God has given to you and to your house, you, and the Levite, and the sojourner who is among you.

It’s natural to respond to the good that God gives to us; thank God for the blessings that are given to others as well.
So…Give Thanks on Others Behalf

Philippians 4:4-9
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Replace worry with thanksgiving (vs 6), and remember… it takes practice (vs 9)!
So…Give Thanks When You Want to Worry

Psalm 100
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come into his presence with singing. Know that the Lord is God. It is he that made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name. For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.

God blesses us a lot, but sometimes we focus on what we receive, instead of on who gives us the gift
So…Give Thanks As You Notice God’s Presence

Lord, we ask that You would constantly interrupt us with the awareness of Your presence as we move through life. Let this holiday of Thanksgiving be about far more than turkey and stuffing; rather, Lord, stuff US with reminders of how Your steadfast love endures forever. We pray this in the name of our Savior, Jesus the Christ – Amen.


Pastor Ed Backell

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