Philippians 1:19
because I know that through your prayers and the provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, my distress will turn out for my deliverance.
Sermons
Benefit of TrialT. Guthrie, D. D.Philippians 1:19
Cheerfulness in TrialAnecdotes of the Wesleys.Philippians 1:19
MarkJ. Parker, D. D.Philippians 1:19
Prayer for MinistersDr. H. C. Fish.Philippians 1:19
Salvation and its MeansR. Johnstone, LL. B.Philippians 1:19
The Ministers' PleaC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 1:19
The Necessity of the Spirit in Spiritual WorkC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 1:19
The Relation Between Prayer and the Supply of the SpiritC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 1:19
The Supply of the Spirit of Jesus ChristW. B. Pope, D. D.Philippians 1:19
Bonds in ChristJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
Character of St. Paul's CaptivityBishop Lightfoot., Conybeare and Howson.Philippians 1:12-20
Christian BoldnessG. G. Ballard.Philippians 1:12-20
Expectations Unexpectedly FulfilledT. C. Finlayson.Philippians 1:12-20
Good Out of EvilJ. Daille.Philippians 1:12-20
Hindrances as HelpsJ. F. B. Tinling, B. A.Philippians 1:12-20
Irresistible Moral InfluenceG. G. Ballard.Philippians 1:12-20
Ministerial LifeG. G. Ballard.Philippians 1:12-20
Paul's Bonds in Christ ExhibitedG. G. Ballard.Philippians 1:12-20
Paul's CaptivityJ. Hutchinson, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
Paul's Sorrows and JoysJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
The Advantage of DisadvantageJohn Bunyan, in Bedford Jail.Philippians 1:12-20
The Furtherance of the GospelJ. Hutchinson, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
The Gospel Furthered by OppositionJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
The Gospel in RomeJ. J. Goadby.Philippians 1:12-20
The Gospel in RomeR. Johnstone, LL. B.Philippians 1:12-20
The Gospel Promoted by PersecutionR.M. Edgar Philippians 1:12-20
The Ministry of Paul the PrisonerG. G. Ballard.Philippians 1:12-20
The Powerlessness of PersecutionH. Airay, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
The Things that have Happened unto Me have Fallen Out Rather unto the Furtherance of the GospelJ. Parker, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
The Triumphs of the GospelJ. Lyth, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
Things Concerning HimselfW. B. Pope, D. D.Philippians 1:12-20
Unfavourable Circumstance, May be Turned to AdvantageC. H. Spurgeon.Philippians 1:12-20
Thoughts Suggested by His CaptivityR. Finlayson Philippians 1:12-30
The Bearing of His Various Trials Upon His SalvationT. Croskery Philippians 1:19, 20
The Magnifying of Christ the Supreme End of LifeD. Thomas Philippians 1:19, 20
And I know that this will turn out to my salvation.

I. CONSIDER THE APOSTLE'S CONCERN FOR HIS OWN SALVATION. He does not refer here to his release from captivity, but to the salvation of his soul.

1. Salvation has several significations in Scripture. It sometimes means conversion, sometimes sanctification, sometimes glorification, - that is, some one or other of three different parts of it; or it signifies all three together. In the first sense it is a past act and complete; in the second, it is a present experience and progressive; in the third, a blessed expectation. The apostle does not use the word here in the first, but in the second and third senses.

2. We are not to suppose that he had any doubt concerning his salvation, but merely that he sought that spiritual growth and that enlargement of spiritual labors that would determine the degree of his blessedness hereafter.

II. HIS SALVATION WAS TO BE PROMOTED BY SANCTIFIED TRIALS. He refers here evidently to the perplexities and troubles by which ungentle and unloving brethren had tried "to raise up affliction to his bonds."

1. Affliction has no naturally sanctifying tendency. It embitters, it hardens, it deadens the soul.

2. It is affliction sanctified by a loving Father that deepens and purifies spiritual experience. (Hebrews 12:7-11.) There are two means suggested towards this end.

(1) Intercessory prayer. "This shall turn out to my salvation through your prayer;" for even a great apostle was dependent upon the intercession of the humble disciples of Philippi.

(2) The supply of the Spirit. "And the abundant supply of the Spirit of Christ." This supply, as the answer to their prayers, would minister to him joy, peace, holiness, strength, patience, and zeal. It is the Spirit proceeding from Christ, sent by Christ, who, taking the things of Christ, shows them unto us, and so establishes our safety.

III. THIS SALVATION IS IDENTIFIED WITH HIS SUCCESSFUL PROMOTION OF THE GOSPEL. "According to my earnest desire and hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but as always, so now also with all boldness, Christ shall be magnified in my body whether by life or by death."

1. The supply of the Spirit justified his desire and hope that he would boldly proclaim Christ. He was not ashamed of the gospel of Christ (Romans 1:16; 2 Timothy 1:12).

2. It would ensure the glorification of Christ in his body, by his labors if he lived, by his edifying patience and peace if he died.

IV. HIS CONVICTION OF THIS PACT. "I know that this will turn out to my salvation." He knew it:

1. From his knowledge of the discipline of the covenant.

2. From his knowledge of God's promises.

3. From his own past experiences of God's dealings with himself. - T.C.







For I know that this shall turn to my salvation
I. THE CONFIDENCE OF THE DECLARATION — "I know." Not an angel could utter a truer note of triumph. Righteousness is a prophetic power. The good man can infallibly predict the issue of moral operation.

II. THE GROUND OF THIS CONFIDENCE. "This shall turn," viz., the preaching of Christ. His joy does not arise from the fact that certain persons preached, but from the higher fact that Christ was preached; not that bad men were working, but that a good work was being done.

III. THE EXTENSION OF THE TRUTH IS THE BEST GUARANTEE OF PERSONAL HAPPINESS. A man of less moral grandeur would have started the argument from himself. Let me be free and then the gospel shall triumph; but he knew nothing of such self-idolatry. He said Christ shall be preached, and Christ's servants in due time shall be free. When it goes well with the Master it goes well with the servant.

IV. THE GOSPEL HAS EVERYTHING TO HOPE FROM BEING ALLOWED TO REVEAL ITS OWN CREDENTIALS. Proclaim it — ministers, teachers; it sounds well from any lips — philosophers, babes and sucklings, unlearned. By whomsoever pronounced, the celestial fire will strike through every syllable.

V. THE GREATEST MAN IN THE CHURCH MAY BE SERVED BY THE SUPPLICATION OF THE GOOD. The apostle associates his salvation with the prayer of the Philippians. No man is so far advanced as to be beyond the range of prayer. Here a child is of value.

(J. Parker, D. D.)

I. THE SALVATION PROVIDED BY CHRIST IS RADICALLY A SPIRITUAL SALVATION. It extends indeed to all the elements of our nature, being an emancipation of the whole man from the bondage of death; but the condition of the body follows that of the soul. In a sense we enter into spiritual salvation at conversion, for "he that believeth hath everlasting life." But the word is generally applied to the state of perfect purity and beauty and blessedness for the whole nature which the day of Christ will bring in.

II. ALL GOD'S PROVIDENTIAL DEALINGS WITH HIS PEOPLE ARE INTENDED TO BE A TRAINING FOR SALVATION, whether pleasant or like Paul's at Rome, "not joyous but grievous," a discipline fitted to ripen the flower of holy character, which will be fully opened in its glorious beauty in heaven.

III. BY THE MEASURE IN WHICH WE AVAIL OURSELVES OF THIS TRAINING OUR SALVATION WILL BE AFFECTED.

1. All who reach heaven will be perfectly happy up to the full measure of their capacities, because being "pure in heart," they will "see God" as fully as their natures can see Him.

2. But the eyes of those who availed themselves but little of the light, of truth, who looked at God but seldom, will be able to look at Him only from far; whilst those whose eyes have been much accustomed to the light here, will stand in the foremost circles, and there with ravished hearts gaze on the infinite glory. Some will have an abundant entrance, while others will be saved only as "through fire."

IV. Remembering these things, WHAT MANNER OF PERSONS OUGHT WE TO BE.

1. In all holy conversation and godliness.

2. In prayer and effort.

3. So that the Divine training may" turn to our salvation."

V. HOW THEN SHALL WE OBTAIN THIS SPIRITUAL PROFIT?

1. Through the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.(1) He originates and supports spiritual life; clears away the mists of prejudice; opens the eyes to guilty self and merciful God; dwells in the regenerate.(2) The figures under which His influence is set forth describe His action; "fire" to burn up the chaff within us, and to light up in our souls the genial flame of love; water to cleanse pollution and to quench thirst; unction to consecrate.

2. This supply is obtained largely through the Church's prayer.

(R. Johnstone, LL. B.)

I. THE SUPPLY. The Holy Spirit is the sole agent of the Saviour's will in the inward work of grace; nor is the indwelling and operation of Christ ever mentioned without the accompaniment of this truth. Not that the Spirit is supplied merely as an influence; He is both the Giver and the Gift; just as the Savior is the Victim and Priest. The gospel is a ministration of the Spirit by the Spirit, and the apostle hopes for the supply to his soul of all that grace which the Spirit, the Keeper of Christ's treasury, has to bestow.

II. THE PRAYER. He relies on the Philippians' intercessions, answering to those he always offered for them (ver. 4). It is simply His most graceful way of asking them to pray for him — not, simply with reference to the official work of the gospel, but to the good of his own soul. Mutual prayer is bound up with the very essence of the Christian system.

III. THE CONNECTION BETWEEN THE TWO. He seems to place himself between them and his Lord. The Spirit of Jesus flows unto him in proportion as the prayers of his fellow Christians and his own flow out towards Him in supplication. We are what the supply of the Saviour's Spirit makes us; that is the measure of our life, strength, perception of truth, performance of duty, and attainment in grace. But that is dependent on individual and common prayer; and the prayer for the Spirit is offered through the same Spirit in whom as well as for whom we pray.

(W. B. Pope, D. D.)

I. THE PRAYER OF THE CHURCH.

1. In reference to Paul.(1) He expected to be prayed for. He does not ask for, but assumes that he has their prayers. Would that all pastors could assume as much. Some are rich in this, but some terribly poor.(2) He valued the prayers of the saints. He was an apostle, but could not do without them; how much more we.(3) He looked for great results from them. He wanted them all the more because his troubles were heavier than usual; so do ministers in these evil days.

2. In reference particularly to ministers.(1) They may justly claim the prayers of their brethren.

(a)To help them in their duties, so that they may be made effectual.

(b)They are burdened with remarkable responsibilities.

(c)They have an experience singular to themselves.

(d)They have subtle, numerous, and peculiar temptations — pride; despondency.

(e)They have many discouragements.(2) The prayers which are wanted are those of the entire Church. From some other labour some of you might be exempted, but not from this.

(a)Of all who profit by our ministry. If you feed upon the Word pray that others may do so; if you don't, do not unkindly speak of it everywhere, but tell the Lord about it.

(b)Of converts.

(c)Of the aged with their experience, and the young with their freshness.

(d)Of the absent through sickness, etc. How effective the ministry of the helpless who can yet pray.(3) The prayers of God's people ought to go up for their minister in many forms.

(a)It should be daily work.

(b)If we expect a blessing on our families through the ministry, we should as families ask God to bless it.

(c)Then there are our prayer meetings, etc.

(d)There should be especial prayer by each Christian at home before every service.(4) These prayers, to be good for anything, will be attended with consistent lives.

II. THE SUPPLY OF THE SPIRIT.

1. The Spirit we want is —

(1)The Spirit who rested on Christ.

(2)The Spirit, the Comforter, who represents Christ.

2. This Spirit is essential to every true minister. All other gifts, however desirable, may be dispensed with, but for the conversion of souls this is the one essential.

(1)The preacher must be taught of the Spirit, else how shall he speak?

(2)He must be inflamed by the Spirit.

(3)He must have the unction of the Spirit.

3. The supply of the Spirit is essential to the edification of the Church of God. To build up a church.

(1)Light is needed.

(2)Love.

(3)Holiness.

(4)Zeal.

4. For the conversion of sinners. Who can enlighten the blind eye, quicken the dead soul, but the Spirit?

5. For the progress of the gospel and the victory of truth.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

I believe in the efficacy of united prayer, but each one must pray. There would be no clouds unless the drop of dew from each blade of grass were exhaled by the sun. Each drop ascending in vapour falls again in the blessed shower which removes the drought. So the grace that trembles upon each one of you must exhale in prayer, and a blessing will come clown upon the Church of God.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

There is an old Romish story, that a certain famous preacher was to preach on a certain occasion, but he missed his way and was too late, and the devil knowing of it put on the appearance of the minister, took his place, and preached a sermon to the people, who supposed they were listening to the famous divine whom they had expected. The devil preached upon hell, and was very much at home, so that he delivered a marvellous sermon, in which he exhorted persons to escape from the wrath to come. As he was finishing his sermon, in came the preacher himself, and the devil was obliged to resume his own form. The holy man then questioned him, "How dare you preach as you have done, warning men to escape from hell?" "Oh," said the devil, "it will do no hurt to my kingdom, for I have no unction." The story is grotesque, but the truth is in it. The same sermon may be preached and the same words uttered, but without unction there is nothing in it. The unction of the Holy One is true power; therefore, brethren, we need your prayers that we may obtain the supply of the Spirit upon our ministry; for otherwise it will lack unction, which will amount to lacking heart and soul. It will be a dead ministry, and how can a dead ministry be of any service to the people of God?

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

John Livingston of Scotland once spent a whole night with a company of his brethren in prayer for God's blessing, all of them together besieging the throne; and the next day, under his sermon, five hundred souls were converted. All the world has heard how the audience of the elder Pres. Edwards was moved by his terrible sermon on "Sinners in the hands of an Angry God;" some of them even grasping hold of the pillars of the sanctuary, from feeling that their feet were actually sliding into the pit. But the secret of that sermon's power is known to but very few. Some Christians in that vicinity (Enfield, Mass.) had become alarmed, lest, while God was blessing other places, He should in anger pass them by; and so they met on the evening preceding the preaching of that sermon, and spent the whole of the night in agonizing prayer.

(Dr. H. C. Fish.)

At a certain period the Methodist Society in Dublin was greatly agitated by divisions. A good but very anxious brother wrote to Mr. Wesley on the subject, told him the real state of things, deplored it exceedingly, and concluded his communication by inquiring, "Where, sir, are all these things to end?" The venerable Wesley replied: "Dear brother, you ask where are all these things to end?" "Why, in glory to God in the highest," to be sure; "and on earth peace, and goodwill among men."

(Anecdotes of the Wesleys.)

It is rough work that polishes. Look at the pebbles on the shore! Far inland, where some arm of the sea thrusts itself deep into the bosom of the land, and expanding into a salt loch, lies girdled by the mountains, sheltered from the storms that agitate the deep, the pebbles on the beach are rough, not beautiful; angular, not rounded. It is where long white lines of breakers roar, and the rattling shingle is rolled about on the strand, that its pebbles are rounded and polished. As in nature, as in the arts, so in grace; it is rough treatment that gives souls as well as stones their lustre; the more the diamond is cut the brighter it sparkles; and in what seems hard dealing, there God has no end in view but to perfect His people's graces.

(T. Guthrie, D. D.)

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