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Philippians, Chapter Three, Lesson Four


Repeating the Pattern


V.17 ** How does Paul begin his loving exhortation for this study?

"Brethren, join in following my example..."

** What word does he use to imply action on the part of the Philippians (and us)?

"...join..." summimetes lit. "a fellow imitator" and ginomai lit. "to become". This compound verb is used only here in the New Testament and is calling for us to be "Repeating the Pattern" which we see in the apostle's life. cf. 1Corinthians 11:1 and 1Thessalonians 1:6-7

** Is Paul rather puffed up thinking that he is the only one to be patterned after?

No - he is quick to add "...observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us." The shift in personal pronouns from "me" to "us" indicates that Paul knows others in Christ are worthy of our emulation.

** Who do you think would comprise this group called "us"?

Paul - Philippians 4:9
Timothy - Philippians 2:19-24
Epaphroditus - Philippians 2:25-30

V.18 ** While Paul has stated the importance of following a godly pattern, are there people who's example we should not follow?

Absolutely - "...many walk..." cf. Matthew 7:13-14

** What are the "many" doing?

They are "walking" or living an external religious life without any inward reality. They do not walk by the Spirit! cf. Galatians 5:16 and 25, Romans 8:3-4, 2Corinthians 11:13, Matthew 7:22-23

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