Agree in the Lord

by | May 2, 2021 | 0 comments

These notes accompany the sermon by the same name found here.

Introduction:

The upward call of God is to be like Jesus Christ. This sermon series is focused on the mindset and practices that produce progress in response to this call. It encourages us to strain forward to what lies ahead and to help others to do the same.

Today’s Big Idea:  The Upward Call is a call to move toward Christ together, being of one mind united in His body the Church.

Emphasis, Unity:

Indicators that Paul was very concerned with the unity of this church:

  • Specific passages on the issue: Philippians 2:1-4, 4:2-7.
  • The recurring use of the idea of a unified mind or life. Philippians 1:27, 2:2, 4:2 (agree).
  • The use of the prefix sun meaning “with” throughout the letter. (see bonus section below)  Paul uses the idea to indicate togetherness between the church at Philippi with himself; all believers with one another; and all believers with Christ.
  • Paul’s emphasis on unity is seen in Philippians 4:2-7 in five words or phrases: Agree, companion, help, labored side by side, fellow workers.

Common Lord – Jesus Christ,

See Philippians 4:2, 2:2-3; Psalm 133; John 17; Romans 12:16-18; 1 Corinthians 1:10, 8:4-6; Ephesians 4:1-8. 

Common Fellowship – the Church:

See Philippians 4:3, 1:27; Hebrews 13:17; 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13; 1 John 1:1-7; Ephesians 2:19-22.

Common Labor – the Gospel:

See Philippians 2:3; Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Corinthians 16:15-16;  2 Corinthians 4:5; Romans 16:3-22.

Common Destiny – Life:

See Philippians 4:3; 2 Corinthians 7:3; John 4:14, 5:21, 6:27, 10:28, 17:2; Ephesians 2:4-5; Isa. 4:3; Ezek. 13:9; Dan. 12:1; Heb. 12:23; Revelation 20:11-15.

Common Joy – in the Lord Always:

See Philippians 4:4, 1:18, 2:17-18, 2:28, 3:1, 4:10; 1 Thessalonians 5:16; 1 Corinthians 12:26; John 4:36.

Common Advocate – God:

See Philippians 4:5; 1 John 2:1; Romans 8:34; 1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 7:25; Job 9:32-33, 16:20-21, 42:8-10.  

Common Peace – To Guard Us:

See Philippians 4:7, 9; Isa. 26:3; Col. 3:15; John 14:27; 1 Thessalonians 5:13; Hebrews 12:14; James 3:17; Galatians 5:22;

Invitation:

Reconcile. Rejoice. Pray. Enjoy.

Bonus

The Greek Word : σύν (sun, pronounced soon)

  • This small word ends up being the key to understanding Paul’s theme of unity in the letter to the Philippians.
  • It is used as a stand-alone preposition meaning “with” – 4 occurrences, Philippians 1:1, 1:23, 2:22, 4:21.  It was as common in the Greek language as with is in the English language.
  • In the Greek language, words are often prefixed with a preposition to give a slightly different nuance or emphasis to the word.   In the letter to the church at Philippi, σύν is often prefixed to words to give add sense of “together” to the word.  Here are 15 occurrences of words that have this prefix and carry the idea of actions done together: 
    • Philippians 1:7 – partakers; Philippians 1:27 – striving side by side; Philippians 2:2 – in full accord (one life, one soul); Philippians 2:17 – rejoice (with); Philippians 2:18 – rejoice (with); Philippians 2:25 – fellow worker; Philippians 2:25 – fellow soldier; Philippians 3:10 – becoming like (Christ in his death); Philippians 3:17 – join in imitating (me); Philippians 3:21- to be like (our body like Christ’s body); Philippians 4:3 – companion; Philippians 4:3 – help; Philippians 4:3 – labored side by side (same as 1:27); Philippians 4:3 – fellow workers; Philippians 4:14 – share (Paul’s trouble);
    • Not included:  Philippians 1:23 – hard-pressed; Philippians 4:2 – Syntyche (proper name);
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