Messages From HopeCC

“Mature In Christ”


Sermon Outline

How can I know I am a mature Christian?

Philippians 1:3-30 NKJV I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy, 5 for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now, 6 being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ; 7 just as it is right for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart, inasmuch as both in my chains and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers with me of grace. 8 For God is my witness, how greatly I long for you all with the affection of Jesus Christ. 9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, 11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. 12 But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel, 13 so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ; 14 and most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. 15 Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from goodwill: 16 The former preach Christ from selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my chains; 17 but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel. 18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice. 19 For I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayer and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, 20 according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better. 24 Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you. 25 And being confident of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy of faith, 26 that your rejoicing for me may be more abundant in Jesus Christ by my coming to you again. 27 Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not in any way terrified by your adversaries, which is to them a proof of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that from God. 29 For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 having the same conflict which you saw in me and now hear is in me.


1. The Church. (vs. 3-11)
• Am I thankful for the church?

Philippians 1:3, 5 NKJV I thank my God upon every remembrance of you,5 for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now,

″fellowship″ (noun) =people connected by a shared interest

Philippians 1:6-8 NKJV being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ; 7 just as it is right for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart, inasmuch as both in my chains and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers with me of grace. 8 For God is my witness, how greatly I long for you all with the affection of Jesus Christ.

• Do I love the church enough to pray for it?

Philippians 1:3-4, 9-11 NKJV I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy,9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, 11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

2. Immanent Reality. (vs. 12-13)

Immanent =being within the limits of possible experience or knowledge (compare transcendent)

• How do I view my current circumstances?

Philippians 1:12 NKJV But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel,

• Do those around me see my ″chains″ as being ″in Christ″?

Philippians 1:13 NKJV so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ;

• Do I see my ″chains″ as being ″in Christ″?
3. Transcendent Reality.

Transcendent =beyond or above the range of normal or merely physical human experience

• Does my attitude inspire some Christians?

Philippians 1:14-15, 17 NKJV and most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. 15 Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from goodwill:17 but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel.

• Does my attitude irritate some ″Christians″?

Philippians 1:14-16 NKJV and most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. 15 Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from goodwill: 16 The former preach Christ from selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my chains;

• Can I rejoice rejoice in the Lord either way?

Philippians 1:18 NKJV What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice.

4. Transcendent Hope.
• Is magnifying Christ my greatest hope for the present.

Philippians 1:19-20 NKJV For I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayer and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, 20 according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.

• Is eternity with Christ my greatest hope for the future.

Philippians 1:21-23 NKJV For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.

• Am I fulfilling His purposes for me in this life?

Philippians 1:24-26 NKJV Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you. 25 And being confident of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy of faith, 26 that your rejoicing for me may be more abundant in Jesus Christ by my coming to you again.

5. Immanent Hope.
• Am I seen as a citizen of heaven living on earth?

Philippians 1:27a NKJV Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ,

• Does the way I live inspire unity and boldness in my community?

Philippians 1:27b-28a NKJV so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel, 28a and not in any way terrified by your adversaries,

• Does the way I live show the reality of salvation/judgement?

Philippians 1:28b-30 NKJV which is to them a proof of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that from God. 29 For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 having the same conflict which you saw in me and now hear is in me.


The hallmark of a mature Christian is not an ability to express a well formed theology, it is a life governed, in all circumstances, by a well formed theology.