I’m reading in Phil 2 today and realize that it would be to my advantage to read this chapter daily and check my progress in the things Paul said we should do if we’re going to follow Christ.
Maybe I (& you) should spend time applying the first 5 verses:
2:1 If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. 4 Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
However, the one verse that really got my attention this morning was Phil 2:14 NASB – Do all things without grumbling or disputing;
That would be refreshing!
Ever hear people muttering things under their breath or breathing out a long sigh – that’s most likely a sign of “grumbling”. It’s usually a negative response to something that’s inconvenient or dissappointing — and according to one theologian – arises from the “self-centered notion” that it shouldn’t happen to me.
“Disputing” arises when a person dwells on something over and over and begins to reason within – convincing themselves that what was done was wrong. Again, this tends to come from the “self-centered notion” that it shouldn’t have happened to me.
That’s not to say that people are always treated right, but Paul said DO ALL THINGS WITHOUT GRUMBLING OR DISPUTING. That’s impossible apart from submitting your life to Christ and appropriating His power to maintain His attitude.
What’s interesting to me is that Americans live in the most prosperous culture in history. Granted there are people who struggle in our country, but by the world’s standards most of us are well off. As Andy Stanley often states: tonight you’ll probably sleep in a bed – with a roof over your head….I’d add to that – with running water & something to eat. Yet, in spite of this, we still tend to be discontent, which usually leads to grumbling & disputing.
Whether you agree or disagree, John MacArthur says: “It is always sinful for believers to complain about anything the Lord calls them to do or about any circumstance which He sovereignly allows. Whether the task is difficult or easy, whether the situation involves a blessing or a trial, negative attitudes are forbidden.”
Today – I hope & pray – that through the power of the Holy Spirit I will set an example for others by applying Phil 2:14 because I believe grumbling is stumbling.