‘Keeping your eyes on the (heavenly) prize’ (Philippians 3:12-21)

It’s worth remembering that the name of the month of January comes from the Roman god, Janus, who is often pictured as having two faces – one looking back to the past and the other looking ahead to the future. At the start of a new year it’s always good to start off with that kind of attitude. Paul certainly had that attitude during his life and it’s nowhere as clear as in Philippians 3:12-21. The apostle was single-minded about purusing a goal of ‘knowing Christ’ and he certainly had his eyes set on a future prize in relation to that prize, constantly checking himself so that he did not live for lesser things and miss out. At the start of the new year, take a leaf from the Apostle’s book!

Service

00:00 Welcome
Song: Standing on the Promises
00:18 Introduction
00:45 Prayer
05:22 Bible reading: Philippians 3:12-21
Song: Behold the Lamb of God
06:40 Kids’ Talk
Song: People Change (But God Don’t Change)
09:53 Bible reading: Hebrews 11:32-12:2
Song: Before the Throne of God
Sermon: Philippians 3:12-21
Song: Be Thou My Vision
11:39 Closing

Outline

• A new year!
• Janus: looking back and looking forward
• The context of his words
• Paul’s forward and direct focus on his goal – the heavenly prize
• Paul wants us to consider…

  1. The attitude required to reach the goal (v.12-16)
  2. The obstacles encountered on the path to that goal (v.17-19)
  3. The complete transformation that was his goal (v.20-21)

The danger in taking your eyes off the goal
What will you be striving for in the year ahead?

‘Rejoice in the Lord’ (Philippians 4:4)

There are many times in life when bad news strikes, circumstances change or life takes a twisty turn for the worst. At the other end of the spectrum are the exhortations in the Scriptures that we ought to follow regardless of those circumstances. Philippians 4:4 is one of those verses. The challenge that this verse gives us is always a challenge to fulfil.

Full service

00:00 Welcome
Song: See Him Coming
00:16 Introduction
00:50 Prayer
Song: Ephesians 2:8-10
06:15 Children’s talk (with thanks to Kidswise; see also Big Picture Bible Crafts #16)
Song: I Can’t Save Myself
08:07 Ministry Focus – Ryan Smith and Christian Union
16:03 Bible reading: Psalm 73:21-28
Song: My Hope Rests Firm
17:11 Bible reading: Acts 16:16-28
Song: What a Friend We Have in Jesus
19:50 Sermon: Philippians 4:4
Song: My Heart Is Filled
32:29 Closing

‘Work out your salvation’ (Philippians 2:12-18)

The Bible presents some matters as mysteries. The intersection point between what God does and what we do in response to His grace is often hard to locate. In Philippians 2:12-18, the Apostle Paul presents one of those mysteries. God works in us and yet we are called to work out our salvation. In this message that intersection point is located and explored.

‘Prayer: For Saints, Servants and Souls’ (Phil 1:9-11, Rom 15:30-33, Col 4:2-6)

Guest preacher, Rev Stuart Withers (Rochester Presbyterian), preached from three main texts in his message on the importance of prayer (Philippians 1:9-11, Romans 15:30-33 and Colossians 4:2-6.). Just as Paul exhorted us to make ‘all kinds of prayers for all the saints’ (Ephesians 6:18), so also in these texts we are reminded that prayer is the key for the encouragement of God’s people, the strengthening of His gospel workers and the means by which unbelievers are brought into the Kingdom of God. Great things happen when God’s people pray!

‘Cradle, cross and crown’ (Philippians 2:1-11)

On Christmas Day (and every day), it’s good to think about the ‘amazing gulf that God did span’ in sending His Son to this earth to be our Saviour. In Philippians 2:1-11, Paul links 3 great truths that all are dependent upon one another; the birth, death and exaltation of Jesus, that not only are important theologically, but also practically – because they teach us how to live.

‘Undercover Boss’ (Philippians 2:1-11)

Do you work for someone who is out of touch? Philippians 2:1-11 tells us that Jesus is the ultimate ‘Undercover Boss’: fully God yet stepping down and taking on a new role to become fully man. He is the model ’employee’: the humble servant, obedient… even to death on the cross. Finally, he is a boss worth working for and he offers a glorious reward. So what is our attitude to the Boss?