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The Secret of Paul's Joy

by Rev. Kirby Williams

Learning how Paul remains joyful regardless of his circumstances.

Text: Phil. 1:15-18
Date: 02/04/2024, the Evening service.
Series: "Evenfall; Sunday Evening Worship" Part 8

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Paul continues to explain to the Philippians (and to us!) how he remains joyful in prison in what some would call the worst of circumstances. And it all has to do with Christ and the Gospel. He has already expressed how the Gospel is impacting the Praetorian guard and the servants in his place of incarceration. He was also joyful because his imprisonment had emboldened the Roman church. So continuing on into this passage, his joy remains on Christ and the Gospel. Even though some of those preaching the Gospel are impure in their motives, Paul is joyful because the Gospel is spreading and Christ is exalted. As we consider our own joy (or lack thereof) we will analyze how the source and object of Paul's joy, along with his singular focus on Christ, reveal the secret of his joy.

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I. Introduction, Phil. 4:11, 1Tim. 6:8, 2Cor. 12:10.
II. Exposition of the text, Phil. 1:15-18.
A. Context
B. Paul's joy in the Gospel.
1. Two kind of preachers, vs. 15.
a. All within the church, Gal. 1:6-9. 2Cor. 11:4, Phil. 3:2.
b. Preachers who are envious.
i. A biblical problem.
ii. A problem within the Christian community.
iii. A problem that continues.
c. Preachers of good will.
2. Two kinds of motives, vs. 16-17.
a. Those with pure motives, vs. 16.
i. Preaching out of love.
ii. Appointed for a purpose, Luke 2:34.
iii. Paul's defense of the Gospel.
b. Those with impure motives, vs. 17.
i. A problem of the heart, Luke 11:43, John 5:44.
ii. Preaching with impure motives.
iii. The ugly manifestation of "strife", 1Tim. 1:3-7.
3. Paul's secret, vs. 18.
III. Application
A. The source of joy, Gal. 5:22.
B. The objects of joy.
C. The destroyer of joy.
D. The sin of "dissatisfaction".
IV. Conclusion

The Preaching Ministry of Kirby Williams

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