This is lesson 8 of 8 in Extraordinary Joy, a bible study on Philippians.
- Main Point of the Passage: Paul thanked the Christians in Philippi for sending him a gift and expressed his dependence on Christ for everything.
- Main Point of the Lesson: A Christian can be content in any circumstance when we depend on Christ.
- Main Application of the Lesson: Participants will choose contentment in Christ no matter their circumstances.
- Key Verses: Philippians 4:12, “I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content—whether well fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need.”
- Word Studies: “Content” in Philippians 4:12
To prepare for this lesson, write your own answers to each of the questions below. You will share some of your answers with the group, but make it your goal to talk less than 20% of the Bible study time. Ask the questions, listen to your group, and let them carry the Bible study. You’ll be amazed.
If you plan to use the optional homework, you’ll need two or three volunteers each week. A few days before your Bible study, choose two volunteers and give each of them one of the following assignments. Tell them you’d like them to take 3-5 minutes to share their work with the group.
Once everyone in your group is sitting in a circle, say, “Here’s the first question. Everyone answers the first question, and it’s just for fun.” Then read the first question, pause, and listen to your group’s answers.
Smile Question: What subject in school was the hardest for you?
Share Question: Tell about a time you were at peace even though your circumstances were difficult.
Introduce the Passage: A Christian can be content in any circumstance when we depend on Christ. In Philippians 4:10–29, Paul thanked the Christians in Philippi for sending him a gift and expressed his dependence on Christ for everything.
- Optional: Have a member of your group either recite the passage or give a detailed summary of the passage.
- Optional: Have a member of your group present their word study on the following word(s):
- content in Philippians 4:12
Study Question: Let’s read Philippians 4:10–23 and answer this question: what words did Paul use to describe the gift he received from the Philippian church?
Possible answers include:
- “Once again you renewed your care for me” (v. 10)
- “Sharing with me in my hardship” (v. 14)
- “The matter of giving and receiving” (v. 15)
- “Gifts for my need” (v. 16)
- “The profit that is increasing to your account” (v. 17)
- “I am fully supplied” (v. 18)
- “A fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice pleasing to God” (v. 18)