Peace! Be Still! – Sermon Notes on Philippians 4:7 (July 17, 2016)

Chapter 4, Verse 7
Peace! Be Still!

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Review; But then David!

Philippians 4:5-6) [KJV] Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.

NOTE: We should draw strength and courage from the fact that rather they beat us or kill us JESUS IS COMING SOON TO TAKE US TO HEAVEN. That means whatever happens to us in this world WE WIN!!

6) Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

“careful” – “1) to be anxious” [Thayer]. “better, be anxious” [Vincent].

John 16:33) [KJV] These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

“tribulation” – “a pressing, pressing together, pressure” [Thayer].

QUESTION: How can we pray in faith when our troubles are pressing up against us, bringing unbearable pressure to bear?

Matthew 6:9-13) [KJV] After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father [remind yourself of your relationship with Almighty God] which art in heaven [remind yourself of your Father’s infinite power], Hallowed be thy name [remind yourself of how infinitely Holy your God is; which means he wants what is good to happen far more than you ever could].

10) Thy kingdom come[remind yourself that there is no power in Heaven, in earth, or in Hell that can prevent God’s Kingdom from operating]. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven [remind yourself God’s will for this planet will ultimately be done]. [In other words, remind yourself that God always wins; so regardless of what you are facing you, as God’s precious child, will ultimately win.]

11) Give us this day our daily bread [now, it’s time for you to ask God for the exact thing you need].

12) And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

13) And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

1 Samuel 30:6) [KJV] And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.

NOTE: David was “greatly distressed” because the Amalekites had invaded their land when they were off to war, and had burned their city and taken captive their wives and children. His men were so distressed that they were speaking about stoning David. But, David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.

On To This Week’s Lesson, “Peace! Be Still!”:

Philippians 4:7) [KJV] And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

QUESTION: Why was there a need for a “peace of God, which passeth all understanding”?

Philippians 1:28-30) [KJV] 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.

ANSWER: Like so many first century Christians the Philippian believers had endured persecution because of their faith. Paul exhorts these believers to not be “terrified” because of this persecution. This would require a peace that is different than the normal peace we might experience when all is well, a “peace of God, which passeth all understanding.”

John 14:27) [KJV] Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

John 16:33) [KJV] These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

QUESTION: What do the above passages teach us?

ANSWER: Jesus gives His children a “peace” that is different than any peace the world can give us. This special peace can give us “good cheer” and cause our hearts not to “be troubled.”

QUESTION: What does “which passeth all understanding” mean?

ANSWER: Note other renderings:

* which is deeper than all knowledge [BBE],

* that no one can completely understand [CEV],

* which is far beyond human understanding [GNB],

* which goes beyond anything we can imagine [GW].

QUESTION: What does that mean in the real world?

ANSWER: God can give us a peace in our difficult times that we shouldn’t have; which we can’t figure out why we have it; which is simply beyond reason.

NOTE: This is not resignation to the inevitable that I’m talking about; but rather, it’s an amazing realization that God is in complete charge in the situation that we are facing.

QUESTION: What does “shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” mean?

“shall keep” – “1) to guard, protect by a military guard,” — “to prevent hostile invasion” [Thayer].

ANSWER: When we realize the peace of God at work in our lives it is not some passive thing; it is an emboldening force that realizes God is present with us at that very moment. This “peace of God” is a resisting army that fights back fear and doubt. It overcomes those invading foes.

QUESTION: Are there any examples of this in the Bible? Note these few examples:

* David when he faced Goliath [1 Samuel 17:40-51].

* Stephen when he was being stoned [Acts 7:55-60].

* Paul and Silas in prison [Acts 16;22-31].

* Paul in a sinking ship [Acts 27:14-44].

* Jesus on the cross facing certain death [Matthew 27:33-60].

QUESTION: How did this “peace of God” work in the above situations?

* David knew he was the future king of Israel; the prophet had anointed him as such. What could a towering giant warrior possibly do to alter the creative power of God’s Word. The answer is, “Nothing! Absolutely nothing!” The “peace of God” prevented fear and doubt from immobilizing David; thus, David knew he was the victor before his sling and stone slew Goliath.

* Before the first stone was ever thrown Stephen looked into Heaven and saw Jesus standing by the right side of His Heavenly Father as clearly as I’m seeing all of you sitting here this morning. What could an angry mob of religious folk holding rocks possibly do that would interrupt this amazing vision and fill the heart of Stephen with fear and doubt? The answer is, “Nothing! Absolutely nothing!” Stephen calmly forgave those who were assassinating him and “fell asleep.”

* Paul cast a devil out of a fortune teller and he and Silas ended up in jail. They were beaten with many stripes and their feet were secured with stocks and chains. How did they react to this terrible turn of events? At midnight they prayed and sang praises to God loud enough for all of the other prisoners to hear them. Overwhelming peace secured them in far greater measure than the stocks and chains ever could.

* When Paul, a Roman citizen, who was now under guard of the Roman soldiers, was being taken to Rome to present his case to Nero, he warned the centurion that they should not set sail from Fair Havens just yet because a bad storm was coming. They ignored him, set sale and the storm came. They fought the storm that was of hurricane proportions for over 14 days. They threw all unnecessary things overboard to lighten the ship. It appeared they would all die, but Paul encouraged by the Word of God, and the “peace of God” told them that they would all survive. And they did.

* Jesus endured the incredible pain of His journey to the cross, then his being nailed to the cross, then the agonizing pain of the slow death of crucifixion. But, in the midst of all that pain He simply did what His Father sent Him to do, redeem mankind. And there, on that cross, in the abundance of His pain, He asked God to forgive me. What amazing peace He realized in the midst of the greatest trial any human had ever faced.

Verse 7 in another translation:

(ERV) And because you belong to Christ Jesus, God’s peace will stand guard over all your thoughts and feelings. His peace can do this far better than our human minds.

QUESTION: What is God’s promise to you if you dare to believe it?

ANSWER: In the midst of your worst fears and troubles “God’s peace will stand guard over all your thoughts and feelings.”

Walk of Grace Chapel, Council Bluffs Church