Presentation on theme: "Is it Too Much? Philippians 2:1 – 4. Does Paul Go Over the Top? Paul finishes the 1 st chapter of Philippians speaking of suffering. Obviously this is."— Presentation transcript:
Is it Too Much? Philippians 2:1 – 4
Does Paul Go Over the Top? Paul finishes the 1 st chapter of Philippians speaking of suffering. Obviously this is something on his mind and on the mind of the people of Philippi. The Egnatian Marketplace in Philippi
Paul calls suffering a privilege… For it has been granted to you not only to believe in Christ but also to suffer for him, since you are encountering the same conflict that you saw me face and now hear that I am facing. NET BIBLE The Apostle Paul in Prison, Rembrandt
His concern is obviously a concern of the congregation… His cure for this concern comes in Philippians 2:1 – 4… We will be looking at the text and how it was heard and is heard How does this prelude to the Christ hymn fit in with Paul and our theology? Hieroglyphic of an Egyptian Doctor
Philippians 2:1 – 4 Net Bible Therefore, if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort provided by love, any fellowship in the Spirit, any affection or mercy, complete my joy and be of thesamemind, by having thesame love, beingunitedin spirit, and havingone purpose. Instead of being motivated by selfish ambition or vanity, each of you should, in humility, be moved to treat one another as more important than yourself. Each of you should be concerned not only about your own interests,but about interests of others as well.
What is Paul exhorting the Philippians to do?
How would these words sound to the Philippians? How about in modern times? Specifically…what does it mean…
To be of one mind, but to be a slave? Or to be a conscripted soldier following the orders of others?
To be of one accord, but to be in prison? Martin Luther King, Birmingham Jail Alcatraz Prison, San Francisco
To look after the interests of others in times of financial hardship, famine, hunger or disease? Tsunami by Hokusai
To be of one love in a time of war?
To be of one spirit when people are divided? Band of Brothers by Don Troiani
And since this is building up to the Christ hymn, and our struggles are compared to his…what does it mean to try to follow in the example of Jesus? Corpus-African-American Crucifix by Witgor Szostalo
In literature there are a few different ways of looking at what seems to be impossible…namely living the perfect life
The Voyage of Life: Youth by Thomas Cole
Literary Examples: The Grail In Arthurian legend, all of King Arthurs knights search for the Holy Grail. Many of the knights fail, including Launcelot, Gawain and the other `best knights’ because they are sinful "The Dream of Sir Lancelot at the Chapel of the Holy Grail" by Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones [An angel announces the failure of his quest due to his passion for Guinevere.]
Literary Examples: The Grail In the end of the quest, only three knights: Galahad, Bors and Percival succeed. In versions of the story, these knights ask God to kill them after tasting from the Grail. They have already achieved the best they can hope in the mortal life. Sir Galahad by Arthur Hughes
Literary Examples: Sodom & Jeremiah… In Genesis 18, Abraham asks that God not destroy the city if 10 righteous men can be found… In Jeremiah 5 we find this: “Run to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, look around and take note! Search it’s sqaures and see if you can find one person who acts justly and seeks truth – so that I may pardon Jerusalem.”
Literary Example: Les Miserables One of the most intriguing characters is Jean Valjean, who we are introduced to at first is a criminal… but after an act of kindness and forgiveness, Valjean devotes his life to helping others.
Literary Examples: Genesis, Philippians Abraham is reckoned as righteous even though he does some things that aren’t (such as the infamous, my wife is actually my sister trick) Paul says this himself: “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13 NRSV
Does Paul Think the Philippians Can Fulfill his Requests?
How would the Philippians hear this encouragement from the Paul Does it even seem reasonable to us? How about to the Philippians? How are we to speak this parable in the parish? Is it possible to live the life that Paul wants here?