These are not the only things, nor the best things; they are mercies without the pale. 4:9, 11; Col. 1:7; 1 Tim. Contentment consists not in adding more fuel, but in taking away some fire; not in multiplying wealth, but in subtracting men’s desires. It needs more than human skill to carry the brimming cup of mortal joy with a steady hand, yet Paul had learned that skill, for he declares, “In all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry.” It is a divine lesson to know how to be full, for the Israelites were full once, but while the flesh was yet in their mouth, the wrath of God came upon them. vi., p. 204. Well, think of God as you would someone you can see in front of you, whether a family member, friend, co-worker, or someone from your church or community. But I see people sometimes who are so friendly with their miserable circumstances that they never want to mend them--men at home with dirt and women with slovenliness, until they come to like it. Because God puts us where we are. When Jesus supplies there is more than enough so that some is even left over! On κατά, sccundum, in the sense of propter, see Kühner, II. Christians hear much, but, it is to be feared, learn little. "Commentary on Philippians 4:11". But it's the only way to overcome dissatisfaction and anger about uncontrollable circumstances. Satan takes great advantage of our discontent; he loves to fish in these troubled waters. (Contentment), Spurgeon in Morning and Evening writes the following devotional related to Philippians 4:12, There are many who know “how to be abased” who have not learned “how to abound.” When they are set upon the top of a pinnacle their heads grow dizzy, and they are ready to fall. This carries the understanding that you do it whether you want to or not, whether you are happy with the Lord or not. When you think of the word “rejoice,” what do you typically think of? —Anon. Look not so much on the dark side of your condition as on the light. Man must be honoured, and though king Ahasuerus make Haman the first man in the empire, yet all this availeth nothing, so long as Mordecai in the gate doth not bow down to my lord Haman. So would you find it. yourself for the purpose of godliness (train yourself, keeping yourself spiritually fit) for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness (spiritual training) is profitable for all things (in everything and in every way), since it holds promise for the present life (life that now is, literally "the now life") and also for the life to come ("of the coming future life"). (see note Philippians 3:20) Traveling through earth as a pilgrim and stranger he was content to take travellers fare. (Witham). It is opposed to dissatisfaction, and by submission to the hardships of life disarms them of half their power. Nowhere does the Bible suggest that we should be content with unsatisfactory conditions. If you are poor, God has given you your health; if He has taken two of your children He has spared a third; some of your neighbours are worse off; at the worst you have your Bible and your Saviour. Let's be like the apostle Paul who said that he had learned to be content, no matter what his situation (Phil. This evil spirit troubles families, parishes, etc. Evils become lighter by patient endurance, and benefits are poisoned by discontent. https: Oida describes absolute, positive, beyond a peradventure of a doubt, knowledge. It has no kinship with fatalism. https: "Commentary on Philippians 4:11". As men and creatures, we are naturally indigent and impotent; have no just claim to anything, nor can maintain anything by our own power. "Commentary on Philippians 4:11". ii. We should murmur a great deal more than they do, if their lot fell to us. ILLUSTRATIONS OF BIBLE TRUTH by Harry A. Ironside - SATISFACTION IN CHRIST - I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content (Phil. In the next place I come to lay down some necessary cautions. BibliographyPett, Peter. ESV Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. We are reminded by Isaiah of "the troubled sea which cannot rest," and unhappy are they whose all is embarked upon this troublous scene, having no fixity of tenure, no stability of possession, but driven by the wild winds of change, and often of panic. In a prosperous condition there is more danger. even when they get a lot. 14; Stob. Our first parents, clothed with the white robe of innocency in paradise, had not learned to be content; they had aspiring hearts. "Sermon Bible Commentary". God threatens it as a curse, “they shall eat their bread with carefulness (anxiety).” (Ezek12.19) Better fast than eat of that bread. 1859. Let it always be sufficient for you to think that you are where God put you. I. Philippians 3:12 supr.— καθʼ ὑστέρησιν. It was not the pressure of penury that prompted the apostle's joy, nor yet the mere value of that sum sent to secure relief. A. (H. W. It is only since the dangers are past, the fears have subsided, and the issue is complete, that his enthusiasm has been kindled to a flame. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therein to be content. Either of want of will in them; of their slowness and backwardness in their care of him, postponing him to others, caring for him last of all; this gave him no uneasiness, he did not take it ill, knowing and owning himself to be less than the least of all saints: or of his own want before this present came; and his sense is, that he did not express himself with so much … In the context He is talking about how to be free from anxiety, or how to be content in our soul. It arises from the inward disposition, and is the offspring of humility, and of an intelligent consideration of the rectitude and benignity of divine providence (Psalms 96:1,2; 145), the greatness of the divine promises (2 Peter 1:4), and our own unworthiness (Genesis 32:10); as well as from the view the gospel opens up to us of rest and peace hereafter (Romans 5:2). Besides, there is another danger that frequently awaits the rich man. 2. Christ is the pearl of price; when we disesteem this pearl, we shall never learn either its value, or its virtue.

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