Good morning, friends. I hope you are all having a great week so far. We have been busy posting, writing, and sharing all kinds of stuff the past few days. We pray it has touched and blessed you in some way. Yesterday we released our latest podcast episode, so be sure to check that out here on the blog site as well.
As promised last week, today I’m back with my DBS (Discovery Bible Study) from chapters 3 & 4 of Philippians. As I explained on that post, this is a super simple method that works for any portion of Scripture and is meant for you to learn to hear from God for yourself. No commentary or study notes needed. The Holy Spirit is the best Teacher (John 14:26) and He WILL teach each one of us when we spend time studying His Word and seeking to apply it to our lives.
I’ll quickly explain this study method again in case you didn’t see the first one, and then jump right into what I’ve gotten out of my personal Bible study time in this small but powerful epistle from the Apostle Paul. So, for the Discovery Bible Study method (DBS), you read the text (typically a whole chapter, maybe even the whole book if it’s small and you need the full context), allow the Holy Spirit to prompt you to zero in on a portion that speaks to you, write out those verses verbatim, write them again in your own words, then answer these 4 questions: What did I learn about God in these verses? What did I learn about man? How can I obey this portion of Scripture/apply it to my life? And who can I tell what I’ve learned here today? This is an action-based Bible study method that requires putting what you’ve learned into practice, which we are all about! So we really like this tool for studying God’s Word.
So let’s get right to it! I actually chose 2 different portions of chapter 3 because the Holy Spirit prompted me to meditate on both of them. I chose Philippians 3:12-14 and will cover those verses first. The text says, “12I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. 13No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it,d but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”
In my own words: Paul is talking about faith and how it moves him to trust in Christ no matter his circumstances-not relying on himself, his “credentials,” or anything except Christ. As believers, we are to forget the past and press on toward our heavenly call. Whoever puts his hand to the plow and looks back isn’t fit for the Kingdom of God. Eyes on the Prize. Run our race with patience and endurance.
What I learned about God from this portion of Scripture: Christ Jesus possesses us (believers), God has a heavenly Prize waiting for us, and He calls us through Jesus.
What I learned about man: We have not achieved perfection yet but we are to press on toward it. Jesus possesses us (me). We are to focus on ONE thing: forgetting the past and looking forward to the future. We must press on to reach the end of the race, and THEN we will receive our heavenly Prize for which God, through Christ, is calling us (me).
How can I obey/apply this to my life? Press on. Always. Keep on keepin’ on. Forget the past and look forward to what lies ahead. Eternal perspective.
Who can I tell? YOU! (reading this) 🙂 I’ll also share with Will, Tiff & Chad, possibly my dad, and whoever else the Lord opens a door with!
The next few verses I chose from chapter 3 are 17-21 which says, “17Dear brothers and sisters, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example. 18For I have told you often before, and I say it again with tears in my eyes, that there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ. 19They are headed for destruction. Their god is their appetite, they brag about shameful things, and they think only about this life here on earth. 20But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior. 21He will take our weak mortal bodies and change them into glorious bodies like his own, using the same power with which he will bring everything under his control.”
In my own words: Paul wanted the believers to live a righteous life like him and to learn from others who lived rightly. He was giving them sincere warnings about those who claim Christ but live contrary to His teachings. He contrasts the way we as disciples of Jesus-“citizens of heaven”-should live as we eagerly await His return to resurrect us to glory when He makes all things right.
What I learned about God: Jesus lives in heaven and is returning as Savior. He will change our bodies into glorious bodies like His and will use the same power with which He will bring everything under His control.
What I learned about man: As followers of Christ, we should pattern our lives after Paul…after Jesus…and learn from those who follow their example. Do NOT follow those who, by their conduct, show that they are enemies of the cross of Christ-those headed for destruction-those whose god is their appetite, who brag about shameful things, who think only about this life. These are true unbelievers-even if they profess Christ. But WE (believers) are citizens of heaven and we are EAGERLY waiting for Jesus to return. Our bodies will be changed to immortal ones like Christ’s and He will bring us to glory!
How can I obey/apply this to my life? Pattern my life after Paul and Christ and learn from those who follow their example. Think on things of heaven…of eternal value. Eagerly wait for His return and live in a way that honors Him and draws others to Him, as the time is short.
Who can I tell? Blog, Instagram, Podcast…Will, friends, family, strangers, everyone!!!
And lastly, I chose Philippians 4:4-9 to finish out my DBS on this powerful little letter from the Apostle Paul that is so applicable to our walk with Christ today, especially as we draw nearer to His return to the earth. These Scriptures say, “4Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! 5Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.c 6Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. 8And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. 9Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.”
In my own words: Believers should be joyful people, rejoicing in all situations and at all times. People should notice that we are considerate in everything. We can live in great joy and expectation of the Lord’s soon return. We aren’t to be worriers but rather take all things that concern us to the Lord in prayer. We are to tell Him what we need and thank Him for all He’s done. Once we position our hearts in this manner, we will experience His peace-which is beyond what our feeble minds can truly understand-and it guards our minds and hearts as we live/abide in Jesus and stay connected to Him. Our thoughts should be fixed/focused on things of Kingdom/heavenly value, and we should keep practicing right living so that God’s peace will be with us.
What I learned about God: He’s the reason for our joy! He is coming soon! He wants us to come to Him with our prayers-our needs, our thanksgiving. He gives us peace-His peace-to guard our minds and hearts as we live IN Christ.
What I learned about man: We should always be full of joy and rejoicing, and we should be considerate in all we do. We need to remember and live like the Lord is coming soon! We aren’t to worry about ANYTHING, but rather pray about EVERYTHING-tell God what we need and give Him thanks for all He’s done. THEN, we will have His peace, which we don’t understand, to guard our hearts and minds as we live IN Him. We MUST abide. We are to fix our thoughts on what is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable, things that are excellent and worthy of praise-NOT negative, worldly, useless garbage. We are to continue living right so that we will have God’s peace.
How can I obey/apply this to my life? Be joyful and rejoice always, go to God in prayer about everything-with thankfulness. Worship and praise Him, live/abide in Him constantly through His Word and prayer and service. Don’t worry…pray. Fix my thoughts on eternal, praiseworthy things. Practice my faith and live in God’s peace.
Who can I tell? I will make a point to tell someone new today…whoever God puts in my path. Holy Spirit, prompt me to share this with whoever needs to hear it.
So, there you go, dear brothers and sisters. That completes my DBS over Philippians. I hope and pray that you got something out of me sharing it…I definitely took a lot away from it. Thank you, Lord and Holy Spirit. ❤ I know that some of it gets repetitive because of the way this method has you break it down, but that’s why it’s such a good tool-because it helps it really stick with you and this is how you truly store up God’s Word in your heart. As we put out messages here on the blog, on our podcast/radio show, and other platforms, we sometimes feel that we are saying the same things over and over….but then pretty quickly are reminded that we are living in a day of a famine of the TRUE Word of God being spoken, preached, and stood firmly upon. And we speak and move and live as the Spirit leads and convicts, so we won’t apologize for any of this. If you read and dig into the Word for yourself, which is what we will ALWAYS urge everyone to do, you will see that the majority of instructions, warnings, and truths are repeated over and over again. God knows we are forgetful people and in His mercy and grace, He is patient and longsuffering with us and He gives us umpteen chances to get our act together and repent and seek Him with all our hearts, souls, minds, and strength. And so all of these tools, messages, resources, etc. that we share are simply that…prayerfully helps to your walk with Christ, as they have been to us. We’re all in this together, brothers and sisters…and we need one another for the battle that lies ahead.
Love you all and I pray today for each of you, that your roots may grow down deep into God’s love and keep you strong. Amen and amen.