It’s about the gospel. If there is anything that Philippians 1 it is about the gospel.
Paul was genuinely suffering. He was in chain and his death appeared to be a very real possibility. And for 98% of us we would be writing letters home that said something along the lines of, “Help! I’m in prison! Pray for me! I might die!” But not this faithful man of God. More important than his own life was the gospel:
Philippians 1:5 I thank my God every time I remember you because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now,
It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me.
Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel.
And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.
The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel.
Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit, striving together as one for the faith of the gospel
His attention to the gospel was so strong that it didn’t even matter that people were preaching the gospel out of false motives. What mattered to him was that the gospel was getting preached. Amazing!
“The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached,” (Php 1:18)
Do I have the high of view of the gospel?
Is the gospel that much of a focus that if faced with potential imminent death, that it would be the gospel that I was most concerned with?
Is the gospel getting preached so important that if people were preaching out of false motives it wouldn’t even matter?
Am I contributing to the spread of the gospel in a very intentional way?
Truth be told I don’t think I can answer in the affirmative to any of these questions. Most often my days are filled with trying to navigate the challenges that each day seems to present. Every day seems overloaded. And having my own business has crowded my mind and heart more than I would like. The gospel.
The other day I met a young man at Olive Garden who had one of the most Biblical names I know…including a last name of “Pray.” I asked if he was a Christian and he was not. But did I share with him the gospel? I did not. But he did invite us to come back and ask for him by name.
The gospel. Are those who are preaching out of false motives doing more than I?
Oh…to think on these things is easy. But I don’t want to just think on these things.
Lord, life up to me your holy and precious gospel! That I might preach it throughout the earth!