Do you know, believer, that you are God’s beloved? Do you see that those around you in Christ are also His beloved and worthy of love, service, and unity in truth? Things to reflect on about your relationships to other believers in Phil. 4:1-3.
Part 16 of a whole book study series called “Joy in Christ: A Study Through Philippians.”
After a lengthy section of exhortations to single-minded focus on Christ, His cross, and the coming resurrection glory, Paul transitions to a collection of short exhortations and commands about unity, joy, prayer, and right and godly thinking. I’ll get to a few of them today and more next time.
Love For Believers
Therefore, my brothers, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm thus in the Lord, my beloved.
It’s interesting to see the ways in which Paul expresses his feelings for the Philippian believers: whom I love and long for…beloved. Paul assembles a few Greek words (agapētoi and epipothētoi) to convey his deep affection in the Lord for them (related: Phil. 1:8).
The word for “beloved” (agapētoi) actually appears twice in the Greek. This isn’t a word we use that often and there’s a rich beauty under its surface. He’s conveying the idea of these believers being dear to him, as being “divinely loved ones,” as Kenneth Wuest puts it. We are Christ’s beloved — His treasured ones, His precious possessions, His children that He holds and cares for tenderly. Paul longs to see these people who dwell so profoundly in his heart again in person; it is not enough that they have sent gifts or sent a messenger. Continue reading