Beyond the Gospels: Philippians 1:12-18

Today’s Reading: Philippians 1:12-18
(Click on the link to read the scripture.)

Paul tells the Philippians it is clear his imprisonment is advancing the gospel. All those around him, making sure he remains locked up, are aware of the reason he is jailed.

As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard, and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. —-Philippians 1:13

Most of us have our chains… our own place of feeling like we are in prison… hemmed up in some way. We fight to get free and work to break the chains, but maybe these are the places where God is working to advance the gospel.

I have a friend whose son is in prison. His punishment will last for decades. I can’t begin to explain how hard this has been for my friend and his family. I often ask how he’s doing and am humbled by his reply all these years later. He’ll tell you how God is moving in the son’s life. How prison has made a way for the son to come to Christ but it doesn’t end there. This friend’s son now spends each day sharing the gospel with others on the inside. A true picture of imprisonment advancing the gospel.

Christ was chained, too. Chains took the form of nails holding Him to a cross with no hope of getting free. God used those nail chains to begin an advancing work that will never end. We could learn a lesson from Paul in these verses. Instead of fighting to break free, maybe freedom comes from rejoicing in the fact that through our own chains, the message of Jesus is proclaimed.

Lord, remind me of Your sovereignty in all things.
Whether I’m chained emotionally, spiritually, physically, or relationally 
show me how You will use me in my chains to advance the gospel for Your glory.

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