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Message Notes

Joy in Chains: Joy In Obedience

Pastor Bill West
October 24, 2021

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life—in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.
Philippians 2:12–16

God's Part: TRANSFORMATION
Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. 
Philippians 2:12-13

1. Our Desires: “to will"
2. Our Actions: “to act”

being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 1:6

The Tools God Uses:
- The Holy Spirit
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22–23

- His Word
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16–17 

- Life Circumstances
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
James 1:2–4

Our Part: COOPERATION
1. Work it out
Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.
Philippians 2:12-13

2. Stop Complaining
Do everything without complaining or arguing,
Philippians 2:14
And do not grumble, as some of them did—and were killed by the destroying angel.
1 Corinthians 10:10

3. Live with Integrity
...so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.
Philippians 2:14–16

God Works in Us so that He Can Work Through Us.

Small Groups Talk About It

Watch the Message Summary:

  1. When it comes to the issue of spiritual growth people often don't understand their part and God's part.  What are your thoughts about this?
  2. Read Philippians 2:13-14. God's Part: Transformation:  What does Paul say God does for us?  What are some ways that God has changed your desires and your actions since you have begun to follow Him?
  3.  What are some ways that God has used the Scriptures in your life recently to help you grow?
  4. What are some ways that God has used "life circumstances" to help you grow?
  5. Our Part: Co-operation: When you think about co-operating with God what comes to your mind?
  6. Read and discuss Philippians 2:12: What does “work out your salvation” with fear and trembling mean”?
  7. Read Philippians 2:14-16: Share a recent time when you found yourself grumbling or complaining. Why do we do it? What role does attitude play in our spiritual growth?
  8. Discuss this quote: "Blessed is he who expects nothing for he shall enjoy everything." St. Francis
  9. In what areas of your life do you need to co-operate more with God? Are you willing for God to make you willing?
  10. Pray for each other...

Bottom Line: God Works in Us so that He Can Work Through Us.