Oct. 25. Final Exhortations and Thanks from Paul

Phil. 4:2-23

Paul gave final exhortations to various individuals as he began to end his letter. Some were named and others were only referred to generally. He urged unity and support for the workers of the church, “Whose names are in the Book of Life.”

The Book of Life is mentioned various times in the Scriptures as containing the names of God’s children. We must conduct ourselves in a manner to assure that our names are entered and do not become blotted from that Book.

Christians have great reason to be happy. They are in the Lord and are entitled to all of the blessings and benefits of that relationship. The avenue of prayer allows them to have instant access to God for fulfilling all of their needs. Requests to God must be accompanied with thanksgiving for previous blessings.

The apostle’s concluding admonition to the Philippians was to meditate on a summary of Christian duties (Whatever things that are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtue and praiseworthy). Corrupt thoughts defile the mind. Good thoughts make one pure. If one will follow these, he can be assured that his name will indeed remain in the Book of Life.

In addition to the gift of aid that Epaphroditus had delivered to Paul in the Roman prison, the Philippian church had aided him on other occasions. He had a special feeling of affection for the Philippians because of their faith and generosity toward him.

Paul pointed out as he thanked them that he had been in states of plenty and of need and had learned to adjust to whatever state that he was in. He said, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

The aid that the Philippians had sent Paul was a great blessing to him, but it was also a blessing to them. They were able to bear fruit as they participated in his work. (“It is more blessed to give than to receive.”) Their gift was “a sweet-smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God.”

Paul closed his letter with personal greetings and invoked the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ to all of the saints in Christ Jesus. He also sent greetings from the Christians with him in Rome, including members of Caesar’s household who had been converted to Christ.

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