Sermon Response Guide
10 I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. 11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
14 Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble. 15 And you Philippians yourselves know that in the beginning of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church entered into partnership with me in giving and receiving, except you only. 16 Even in Thessalonica you sent me help for my needs once and again.17 Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that increases to your credit. 18 I have received full payment, and more. I am well supplied, having received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God. 19 And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 20 To our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.
- Jesus gives us a new generosity: to give as he has given to us.
- Contentment is the catalyst of generosity (vs. 10-13).
- Community is the context of generosity (vs. 14-18).
- Christ is the cause of generosity (vs. 19-20).
- To be like Jesus is to give your life away for the sake of others. We’re never more like God than when we give.
- Giving first reminds us that all we have is from God and it guides us to be content in Christ.
- The cure to a self-focused, joyless life is to give.
- If God raises our standard of living, he does so to raise our standard of giving.
Ask God to write this word on your heart this week:
Throughout this sermon series, “All Things New,” we have been working together as a faith family to memorize Philippians 2:3-11.
This week, review Philippians 2:3-11 and try to recite it without notes:
“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Questions for Reflection
Take time to reflect and respond to these questions on your own in the presence of the Holy Spirit, or with trusted friends or family members:
1: How would you describe generosity?
2: What is it about generosity that makes it stand out in the world we live in?
3: How might giving be related to joy?
4: What has God given to you in Christ?
5: David Garland, professor of Scriptures at George W. Truett Theological Seminary, wrote, “True giving requires giving of oneself, not just giving money. The gospel is not about what we can get from God but what God has given to us so that we might give of ourselves to others… Giving is related to the grace of God experienced in Christ… The givers are made generous because of God’s grace working on them, in them, and through them to give to others in need.”
What does the gospel of grace have to do with generous giving?
6: Read 2 Corinthians 9:6-15 (from the New Living Translation, if possible). What does this passage teach us about the “ministry of giving?”
7: How is the Holy Spirit stirring your heart to grow in Christ-like generosity today?
Lord, help us believe you will supply every one of our needs according to your riches in glory. Forgive us when we forget how much we have received in you. Make us a people who are generous toward others because you are generous toward us.
For those interested in further study, our pastors want to share resources that have aided them in their sermon preparation (in conjunction with the Bible and the Holy Spirit):
· 2 Corinthians (The Christian Standard Commentary) by David E. Garland
· Philippians (The NIV Application Commentary) by Frank S. Thielman
· Philippians (Word Biblical Commentary) by Gerald F. Hawthorne and Ralph P. Martin
· Paul’s Letter to the Philippians (The New International Commentary on the New Testament) by Gordon D. Fee