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Lesson # Phil. 1:21-26
Study Material - Phil. 1:21-26
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
21 For [gar] to me [emoi] to live [zao] is Christ [Christos], and [kai] to die [apothnesko] is gain [kerdos]. 22 But [de] if [ei] I live [zao] in [en] the flesh [sarx], this [touto] is the fruit [karpos] of my labour [ergon] [moi]: yet [kai] what [tis] I shall choose [haireomai] I wot [gnorizo] not [ou]. 23 For [gar] I am in a strait [sunecho] betwixt [ek] two [duo], having [echo] a desire [epithumia] to [eis] depart [analuo], and [kai] to be [einai] with [sun] Christ [Christos]; which is far [polus] [mallon] better [kreisson]: 24 Nevertheless [de] to abide [epimeno] in [en] the flesh [sarx] is more needful [anagkaios] for [dia] you [humas]. 25 And [kai] having this [touto] confidence [peitho], I know [eido] that [hoti] I shall abide [meno] and [kai] continue [sumparameno] with you [humin] all [pas] for [eis] your [humon] furtherance [prokope] and [kai] joy [chara] of faith [pistis]; 26 That [hina] your [humon] rejoicing [kauchema] may be more abundant [perisseuo] in [en] Jesus [Iesous] Christ [Christos] for [en] me [emoi] by [dia] my [emos] coming [parousia] to [pros] you [humas] again [palin]. KJV-Interlinear 21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose. 23 But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better; 24 yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake. 25 And convinced of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that your proud confidence in me may abound in Christ Jesus through my coming to you again. NASB
Every believer sooner or later comes to, and crosses, the point in life of wanting to move on to the next life, to be with Christ and out of this world. Generally, when we are young in our spiritual growth, the pressures of this life make us yearn to get on to the next life, our primary motivation is to get away from the pressures and pains we are going through.
As we advance in our spiritual life, then our thoughts turn to Christ more and more. We experience the blessings resulting from our spiritual growth and appreciation as Paul expresses here his desire to move on and be with Christ, but he also recognizes his responsibility to other believers and those who know him. He too realizes that when God sets the date for his, Paul's, going home, then and only then will his death occur and not before. To superimpose ones own desires over that of Gods and attempt something dramatic like suicide would be a gross error in judgment. Our desires in general are biased and not objective. We want because of immediate need or pain relief, whether mental or physical. God can see our future and the role He has for us much more clearly than we can.. As we grow up spiritually we realize our role in life and with a more stable life due to doctrine in our soul we are better prepared to deal with the problems of this life. And, in addition, we see our responsibilities to others with respect to teaching them as the need arises concerning Bible doctrine.
It should be the character of every Christian that 'to live is Christ'. That is to say, be taking in doctrine, Gods Word, and Christ is the Word, into the soul, then your life is ruled by Christ. That is if you indeed live by what you know and think. The glory of Christ ought to be the end of our life, spiritual maturity. The grace of Christ, the principle of our life or the foundation on which we base our life. And the word of Christ the rule of it and this is the application of doctrine to our daily life. Our Christian life is derived from Christ, and directed to him. He, Christ, is therefore, the principle, rule, and end of our life.
To die is gain, is a true statement, but it has its qualifications. If you are a believer, then dying is gain in that you move on to heaven. If you are an unbeliever then dying is loss. Your only chance to make it into heaven is during your life on this earth. Only then can you make the decision of believing in Christ. Throughout history, God has demonstrated that no matter what happens in ones life, if a person chooses to reject Christ in life, he will continue to choose against Christ even in death. Therefore death is not a hindrance that prevented anyone from finally believing in Christ. They have already made up their mind and will never change.
The believer, on the other hand, has the opportunity to advance spiritually while in this life. Too, the decision process continues daily throughout ones life. You either study and advance or you don't study. It is as simple as that. Most believers do not study and therefore do not advance in their spiritual life. Again, death is the termination of their opportunity to advance spiritually while in this life. The goals of spiritual maturity are the advanced rewards and blessings in eternity which far exceed the blessings that every believer will receive. So to remain in this life and utilize doctrine in order to glorify God, then produces even more harvest, or fruit, or spiritual production for ourselves, that will in turn be rewarded in eternity. This then is termed as abounding in Christ as Paul describes it.
To move on to be with Christ is good, but to remain in this life despite its pressures, is far better, because of the opportunities available to us in our advancement to maturity. By remaining here we can improve ourselves, we can help others. The problems in life, whether great or small, should be perceived as simply insects which you swat, ignore, and move on with your life. The insects will always be around to some degree, but they will come and go and should not control your life. Christ first should be the attitude, and all other things will fall into place.
Table of Contents
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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