Sunday Supernaturally: Partners in Grace

And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.  (7)  It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me of grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel.   

Philippians 1:6-7 ESV

Many of the Bible promises that we claim and proclaim have a larger context that we can’t ignore.  Paul says he’s sure that God will complete His work in the Philippians.  He’s speaking to a church that has partnered with Him in the work of God from the beginning (Verse 5).  In verse 7 he gives the reason for his confidence: He holds them in his heart because they are “partakers with me of grace.”  A partaker is one who joins  others in enjoying or doing something.  The usage here means they are all partaking together in God’s grace.  Some interpreters read this as meaning they all share with Paul in the grace of salvation. We all share a common salvation (Titus 1:4).  Others take it to mean that, as long-time supporters of Paul’s ministry, they actually share in that ministry.  They are his companions in the apostolic grace.

Whichever view you take, it has implications for what you’re doing when you go to church today.  First, you will be in the presence of many who share with you a common salvation.  In that common salvation, you have great confidence when you pray for one another.  We carry one another in our hearts.  In addition, can be a partaker in a grace, a ministry gift, that God has connected you to.  You are a partaker in the ministry gift that resides in your pastor and all the ministries your church supports.  Your prayers for them will be effectual, and his or her prayers for you will be powerful because you have connection.  As we head for church today, let’s go prepared to share with our fellows in the amazing grace of God’s common salvation.  In addition, be prepared to share, to give and to receive, in the grace He has given us through the ministries where God has planted and connected us to through the corporate ministry of our church.  Then we can boldly say, “I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

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