I am studying the New Testament letter to the Philippians this week. As I read chapter two this morning, the concept of working out my salvation stood out to me. You’re probably familiar with the verses I am writing about. Here they are:
“So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (2:12,13).
Now my question makes sense, doesn’t it? Are you working with God or against God? In other words, are we doing what we should to grow in our faith? The Christians in the city of Philippi were to be consistency growing in their knowledge of and relationship with God. It should not matter if Paul was with them or absent from them. The same should hold true for us as well. We are to be passionately pursuing God whether we are at church or at home. We should be working out our salvation in the presence of our pastor on Sunday and when we are far from him on Thursday.
Let me draw this to a conclusion for us by mentioning an application given in the context. Individuals who are working out their salvation guard their hearts and their lips from grumbling and complaining (2:14 [It’s the very next verse!]). Protecting ourselves from these sinful practices is the fruit of a transformed and transforming life. Although we do not need to be happy-go-lucky, having a laizze fair about life, it is just as true that we need not be upright, easy-to-offend individuals.
Are you easily irked? Are you irritable, and don’t mind it showing? Does your misery seek out others for company? If so, it just might be a tell-tale sign that you’ve become lax in the working out of your salvation. If God has saved you, join Him in His sanctifying work! Exercise your faith into fruit–today!