Useful Bible Studies > Philippians Commentary > chapter 2

Obey God joyfully and gladly

Philippians 2:14

It is truly wonderful when a person receives a right relationship with God (Luke 15:7). God forgives that person’s evil deeds. The love of Christ will never leave that person (Romans 8:35-39). The Holy Spirit enters the person’s life (Romans 8:9-11), and will support that person through all the difficulties of their life on earth. Afterwards, that person will live always with Christ in heaven (1:23).

However, some Christians seem to find no joy whatever in their relationship with God. They complain about every difficulty in life; they do not see those problems as opportunities to trust God more. They protest about everything that God wants them to do; however, they still do these things, perhaps because they are too afraid to do anything else. Like the servant in Matthew 25:24, they consider God to be a hard master.

In Philippians 2:5-8, Paul urged his readers to think about Christ. Christ suffered greater loss and worse difficulties than any Christian ever will suffer (Isaiah 52:13 to 53:6). However, he did not complain (Isaiah 53:7; 1 Peter 2:21-23). Instead, he chose to obey God gladly and willingly (Hebrews 10:5-7).

If we do not obey God joyfully and gladly, then we are not truly obeying God (Deuteronomy 28:47; Psalm 100:1-2). Instead, we are behaving like God’s people in the desert, who complained against God (1 Corinthians 10:1-12). The cause of their wrong attitude was unbelief (Hebrews 3:7-19), in other words, they refused to believe God.

God’s goodness, his promises and his love provide constant reasons for his people to be glad (Lamentations 3:22-25; Habakkuk 3:17-18; Romans 8:28). Therefore, Christians who believe God will never blame him for their difficulties in life. Instead, they will gladly trust him.

Next part: Shine like stars (Philippians 2:15)


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© 2020, Keith Simons.