Philippians 4:11-13 - The Verses Project

Bible Philippians 4:11-13

Posted June 04, 2012

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.

Contentedness: a word not often used in our culture. How can we be more content in a world whose siren's song is forever singing a million songs that promise satisfaction but never do? If Christ is our Supreme Treasure, then in wealth or poverty we can still say we are rich! In a thriving body or a cancer-ridden one, God is our portion still! Seasons will change and our once-stable mountains may fall into the sea, but God will remain covenantally present and faithful to his people. That is how we are to be content.

The last verse ("I can do all things...") has been hijacked by athletes and those wanting to claim that this verse promises blessing on anything we do. However, we must not simply rip this verse out of its original context of the book of Philippians, which lies amidst calls to obedience, humility, and service. This verse is a promise that no matter what our situation may be, God will strengthen us to serve Him faithfully. Darrin Patrick said this, "Stop lusting after new soil. Bloom where you are planted." May Christ be our treasure and strength no matter what outer circumstance we may find ourselves in!

What would your life look life if you really were completely content in all God is for you in Christ? How would your relationships change? Your view of your job? Friends? Money? Significance? May God teach us to join Asaph's prayer in Psalm 73:25-26 wholeheartedly:

"Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."

For more exploration of this verse: