Why, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence…
This work is a work —
I. IN YOUR OWN HEART. To obey inwardly; to cherish and cultivate the good feelings which are now in you; to discipline your thoughts, rule your temper, keep your heart in order; to form right habits of daily life; to struggle against your besetting sin; to maintain a Christian spirit.
II. IN THE CLOSET. Every one knows how difficult it is to fulfil faithfully the duties of private prayer, self-examination, and meditation; and to maintain the habit regularly, and to do it spiritually. To get rid of wandering thoughts; not to slide into reverie. To use form without formality. To make his own room a sanctuary, which he never leaves without carrying from it a holier frame and a higher aim.
III. IN YOUR OWN SPHERE. In the family and in business.
IV. IN THE WORK OUTSIDE. No Christian should be without some definite form of Christian work. It may be among the poor, with the sick, or in the Sunday school, etc. In so doing you are working out the salvation you have received. Conclusion: Have you been saved? Then save! Are you loved? Then love! Are you happy? Then make others happy!
(J. Vaughan, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.