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December 3, 2000 PM

Phil 4:14-16

INTRO: The verses I have read are part of a thank you note which is incorporated into this whole letter to the Philippian church. This thank you note tells us more of the special bond and relationship which existed between Paul and the Philippians. Indeed, in Pauls mind this church is set apart from all others and is the one to which he longs to return. In a previous lesson we noted that Paul was being very careful in his expression of gratitude ... careful not to make them feel guilty for a lack of opportunity to send support and careful not to seem expectant of further gifts. But tonight I want to look at The Lessons Of A Thank You Note.


A. Affliction was the my necessity of v.16

1. Paul was first, foremost an evangelist to Gentiles

2. Acts 20:25-27 preaching the kingdom of God

3. much of the time he had to support himself in order to continue to preach and teach (Acts 20:33,34) ... but this apparently left serious needs unmet

B. Those needs were their opportunity

1. they shared (fellowship) in/with his affliction

2. they did well ... they reacted properly in meeting the needs he had

3. Gal 6:10 ... Rom 12:13


A. Firstly, we see Paul at times alone in his ministering

1. no church communicated with me

2. no doubt the church in Jerusalem, in Antioch were interested but there apparently was no real support for his necessities

3. Paul had feelings ... and those feelings show here

4. perhaps a similar idea is in Lk 17:17,18

B. The Philippians had been generously concerned from beginning

1. in the beginning of the gospel

2. perhaps it was spirit of Lydia which prevailed there

3. their concern even continued after he left them!

4. but ye only ... Paul was experiencing something here which had been indeed rare in his ministry

C. Their understanding of need to support preachers

1. the giving and receiving was monetary support

2. though Paul seldom received it, he taught the propriety of this support

3. Gal 6:6 1 Tim 5:18 1 Cor 9:11-14

4. obviously, such support makes possible greater service - the thoughts of Mt 6:24 become very relevant when preachers must labor in secular efforts to supply necessities


A. They sent to him even in Thessalonica

1. they felt an obligation even after he left them

2. often I find churches whose interests are totally inward ... which seem not to sense a responsibility beyond the city limit sign

3. my experience is that there develops a narrowness in those churches which is very destructive - destructive of love, compassion, caring, concern, growing ... a cold, sterile, meticulous keeping house

B. Again and again they sent ... continuing support

1. note 2 Cor 11:8,9 as Paul continued his work, the Philippians continued their support

2. yes, there came a lapse (4:10) ... but not for lack of interest! nor for sensing no responsibility

3. and now - in Rome - Paul again receives their support

C. How long should we support a missionary?

1. a better question ... why stop? if his need has not?

2. fewer missionaries now than ten years ago ... yet, the need is still there and greater ... why?

3. as long as the man is working, preaching and sound, should not we stand behind/with him?

4. perhaps one of the greatest faults of our time is in the business of keeping on!

CLOSE: Finally, the lesson of this think you note is that of saying, Thank you. For the smallest of kindnesses, the largeness of thank you is always appropriate. There needs to be graciousness in receiving!

Cecil A. Hutson

03 December 2000

God's Plan of Salvation

You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)

You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)

You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)

You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)

Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)