I’m going to perform a brain surgery today. Tomorrow I am going to climb Mt. Everest. After that, I’m going to fly a 747.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, right?
In case you missed the sarcasm: No, this blog has not been hacked.
What Paul really meant.
While I don’t think most of us would ever go this far in “claiming” this verse, I do think it is easy to misunderstand Paul’s heart behind penning these words.
We must pay attention to the context of this verse.
Paul is thanking the Philippian church for their partnership with him. They had been sending him financing for his ministry and gifts to encourage him personally. But he wants them to know that, thought he is thankful for them, he doesn’t need them. He needs Christ.
Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. -Philippians 4:11-13
Paul is trying to communicate that, though he has enjoyed their partnership, he doesn’t need their gifts. When Paul stated that he can do all things through him who strengthens, he meant that he has learned the secret to enduring all things: contentment.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
So, before we sport our coffee mugs and bumper stickers with this overly-used-out-of-context verse, let us be sure that we really mean what we are shouting off the rooftops. I can do all things through him who strengthens me is a declaration that Jesus is enough. If my husband loses his job, Jesus is enough. If my child walks away from the Lord, Jesus is enough. When my soul is in turmoil, Jesus is enough.
There is SO MUCH MORE in this great set of verses. What did the Lord reveal to you through your study of Philippians 4:10-23?
To wrap up our time together, next Friday we will have a linky open! We would LOVE to hear about how the Lord has used this study in your life. So, get your posts ready and head back here to share your heart with us.