Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;  (28)  And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God.  (29)  For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;  (30)  Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me. Philippians 1:27-30

In the Greek, verses 27-30 make up 1 long sentence.  The key word in this text is the word translated “conversation”.  This old English word “conversation” meant lifestyle or conduct.  The word “becometh” speaks to worthiness.  You see, we are not of this world, but we are citizens of heaven.

I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.  John 17:14

For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ:  Philippians 3:20

The word conversation here speaks to citizenship.  Our text this morning is expressing that people should know that we are Christians by how we live our lives.  We should want to live our lives in such a way that we are identified with Christ.

That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; Philippians 2:15

The way we live our lives should make a difference.  Our life should be substantiating the Gospel.

Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;  (28)  And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God.  (29)  For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;  (30)  Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me. Philippians 1:27-30

Even though we are far from being perfect, we are still supposed to live a life that substantiates the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  We do not just preach, teach, and defend the Gospel.  We live the Gospel.  Living the Gospel is what gives credence to our gospel ministry.

Paul frequently talked about our walk.

I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.  Ephesians 4:1

“That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God” Colossians 1:10

“That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.” 1 Thessalonians 2:12

Furthermore, then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more.  1 Thessalonians 4:1

When we live according to the ways of this world, we cause people to doubt the Christianity we espouse and the Gospel we preach.  The Gospel is all about change.  When we believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it changes who we are, where we are going, and how we think.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17

When it comes to the Gospel, Paul gives us 3 things we must do.

1.  We must stand for the Gospel. V. 27

Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;  Philippians 1:27

This word “stand” was often used to refer to a soldier standing his ground, not willing to give up his position, even if it costed him his life.  We are not just saints and servants, we are soldiers.  We must stand fast.

Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.  2 Timothy 2:3

There is a positive and negative side to standing.  When we stand for God, we stand against Satan.  When we stand for righteousness, we stand against sin.  When we stand for morality, we stand against immorality.

Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved. Philippians 4:1

Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.  1 Corinthians 16:13

Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.  2 Thessalonians 2:15

Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.  Galatians 5:1

We teach the same Gospel that Paul proclaimed.  Remember the Philippians jailer?

And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  (31)  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.  Acts 16:30-31

2.  We must strive for the Gospel. V.27

Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;  Philippians 1:27

The word pictures an athlete.  We work together for the Gospel.  We do not work against each other.  We work together.

We live in a world that is increasingly hostile to the Gospel.  This is not a time to get hung up on the trivial and the secondary.  We must strive together for the Gospel.  In a day where there is so much turmoil, we must proclaim the Gospel to a lost and dying world.

3. We must suffer for the Gospel. V.29

For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake; Philippians 1:29

This is a promise that may be more difficult to stand on.  This promise will come true.  The day for persecution in our country may be sooner than we think.  As believers in Jesus Christ we are called to suffer for his sake.

Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.  2 Timothy 3:12

At some point we will be persecuted if we live for Christ.  Notice the word “given” in verse 29.  This is God’s grace in our life.  By God’s grace we get to suffer for the cause of Christ.  The temporary suffering that we endure will bring about an eternal glorification.

And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.  Romans 8:17

Are you willing to stand for the Gospel? Are you willing to strive for the Gospel?  Are you willing to suffer for the Gospel?

 

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