Today’s text starts out with a verse that is often misused by the cults to support the false notion that one must work to earn their salvation…
“Therefore, my beloved, as you 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; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.” Philippians 2:12-13 NKJV.
Several important things to keep in mind when reading the above text.
1. Paul is not telling people who are not saved to, “work for” his salvation. The book of Philippians is written to, “… all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi…” Philippians 1:1
2. Since Paul is writing to the person that is already a Christian,he tells them to “work out” his salvation. This means every Christian is to “work out” what God has already”worked in” to their lives. Living an obedient, Spirit-filled life is one of the ways we do this.
3. Paul tells these Christians to work out “their own” salvation. This means Christians are not to be spiritual “busybodies”. We are not called to “police” or micromanage the spiritual lives of others. We have enough of a job managing our own spiritual lives. Work on you, not that other person!
4. We are to live our Christian lives,“with fear and trembling”.This means that every born-again child of God must never lose the fear of God. We must never get so confident in our standing with God that we become spiritually lazy or sloppy in our battle against sin.
“Therefore, we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be wellpleasing to Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.” 2 Corinthians 5:9-10
5. The most important point of all is that it is God Who is working in us!We don’t have to do it ourselves. We have the power and presence of God in our lives. And He is faithful to complete the work He has started!
“…being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good workin you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;” Php 1:6
Onward Christian soldiers!