Philippians Chapter 2

Philippians Chapter 2

Here is the second session of our study on Philippians.
The material for this has been taken from N.T. Wright’s study on Philippians for Small Groups.

You can also download a PDF of this by CLICKING HERE

Opening Question

  • What is your favourite Old Testament story and why?

Verses 1-11: Ask someone to read these verses out loud

Ask people to share something that stands out for them

A theme throughout Philippians is one of Christ-mindedness. Paul, the writer of Philippians is seeking to teach and empower the church to take responsibility for continually renewing their thinking and doing through this Messiah-shaped lens. Verse 5 instructs us to have the attitude of Christ in our relationships with one another. And then in verses 6 through to 11 we are given a poem that tells the story of Jesus’ earthly life, describing his downward (heaven to earth to hades) trajectory and then his glorious ascension to the “highest place”.

At the time of the writing of this letter, status was built on power, position and recognition. But Jesus flipped that way of thinking upside down. He took the role of a servant, he humbled himself. He was despised and rejected; he was obedient even to death.

Question and Application

  • Where in your own life do you need to re-think your humanity around the story of Jesus?

Verses 12-18: Ask someone to read these verses out loud

Ask people to share something that stands out for them

Paul is preparing them for every eventuality. He wants them to learn to think for themselves with the Messianic-mind, in order that they aren’t shaken by what goes on around them.

Question and Application:

  • In a culture that values vulnerability and honesty, how do we avoid falling into “grumbling and complaining”?

Verses 19-30: Ask someone to read these verses out loud

Ask people to share something that stands out for them

Paul wants to commend Timothy and Epaphroditus to the church as models to be imitated. Timothy has been to Paul like a son with a father. A son at that time in history, would normally be apprenticed to the father, and Paul and Timothy have been serving together in that Father-Son relationship. Timothy has faced many situations and has proved himself capable. This passage is a letter of commendation for Timothy and Epaphroditus highlighting their care, sacrifice and passion for the Gospel. 

Question & Application:

  • What can we take from Paul’s descriptions of Timothy and Epaphroditus to apply to our own lives?

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