George Walker - Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon - New Norway, Alberta, Canada - June 1924

Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon were all written about the same time, by prison at Rome. While in Rome, there was clear evidence that Paul was growing. The ___ was developing in him. An imitator is soon found out. It is only a matter of time ___ are different ways of growing. Our letters show whether we are growing or not. ___ have gone on know and read between the lines. Some want knowledge without love ___ of the thing. God's idea of knowledge is growth through dark times. Roots grow in the dark. Paul was one whom the roots surely grew in. Paul was five years in jail ___ makes the roots of the oaks strike deeper.

 

Sometimes, we feel that all that we have had is dying. Only in the proportion that death works in us can Christ work in us. The reason of the great crops in Alberta is death has been working in the soil. Crops fail when all the death has been used up. The death you died last year will not do for this year. Deeper death must work. The deeper the roots go the more territory they are touching. Our side is the death side. God's side is the revealing and forming of Christ in us.

 

The Holy Ghost witnessed that bonds and afflictions were waiting for Paul, but Paul purposed to face it. Paul wasn't eaten up with worries about circumstances, but faced all up bravely, and let Christ grow in Him. He wasn't finding fault with himself or others, but faced all, not fretting over things he couldn't help, not letting the devil cheat him, but making the best of it. He prayed and wrote letters, used heart and mind, preached, grew solidly, getting stronger because death was working.

 

One of the greatest things in Paul’s mind to solve was the love and purpose of God in such an interest in the human race, and in himself. It filled his heart with gratitude. Our hearts should be filled with gratitude to the Lord. Human nature is selfish and doesn't feel grateful. "Oh praise the Lord" and "Who am I?" Paul trying to grasp why God created the human race.


In Ephesians 1:4, before the foundation of the world, God had planned His salvation. God made Adam a perfect human being. The devil was used to help Adam see his need of being born again. God is a good architect. He had His plan laid in His mind and then carried it out. God had a plan and is working to carry it out according to that plan. Some seem to think that salvation is in installments. We need to be born again, because we are only human - not for Adam's sin.  God's great business that He would have every thing else subservient to, is to get men and women born again into His Family; and the one that has a little part in that business is nearest to His heart. I'm in the business that will be before the foundation of the world.

 

The two words: "In Christ" and "In Him" meant a great deal to Paul; and few grasped it as he did. In Galatians, he tried to make the truth clear, and in Ephesians, he was developing it. Romans shows the difference between being in Christ and being under the old covenant. The law could tell what to do, but could give no power to do it. One desire that is deep in a human heart is to do something to merit Heaven. Evolution: pride of the human heart - seems to take satisfaction in thinking - "I'm climbing up." I came from the hand of God and have nothing to be proud of, because I had been going down hill. The best righteousness that one can produce by saying prayers, paying up, attending church - is termed by God as filthy rags. "By the grace of God, I am what I am." If you see anything in me to admire, don't give me any credit, but God. It is the motive we have that makes things right or wrong.

 

Galatians:  fallen from grace - after having valued the grace of God, go back to their old form of religion. The way to have God's favor is to have a contrite heart. Saul lay all night in sore distress, but God did not answer him; the Lord couldn't hear Saul because for years, he had been a trifler. Always keep a broken contrite heart. I may have made mistakes, but I'll take reproof, cry unto God and get restored. Play the man and there will be nothing against you. I'll take my medicine and suffer for my sin. The oftener I make use of that way He has opened up, the more I value His blood.

 

What return does God expect from His Investment? "Be holy and without blame, before Him in love." The Lord had it in His heart, and His hope and expectations was that His people would live to the praise and the glory of God. Job illustrates pure, unselfish love; it is easier to talk before the test comes. If every benefit were taken from us, would we still cleave to the Lord? Many people are deceived with this thought, "I serve God because He has given me so much." The devil is the accuser of brethren. He likes to tell God – there is no love in human beings. God loves to challenge the devil. Are we those who can prove that there is love in us, and not disappoint Him? Will we charge God foolishly when things go against us? Hearing, believing, trusting, sealed by His Spirit - then the love of God spread abroad in our hearts by His Spirit, and we begin to love God and His people, and to lose love for self.

 

Spirit of wisdom:  many have the spirit of foolishness. Wisdom and Christ have the same meaning. Wisdom is knowledge applied. "A soft answer turneth away wrath." The wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable.

 

Spirit of revelation:  I am learning from God by inward revelation - from God Himself. The reason so many are lacking in spirit of wisdom is because they know so little of the spirit of revelation. "The eyes of your understanding (heart) being opened." Some measure more by present experience than by what is wrought to come out in eternity.  When I grasp that the only thing worth while in life is to become like Jesus, I'll set the true value on everything.