This morning I am "stuck" on 2 verses and I am not real sure I get it just yet. Hopefully by the time I write all this out, or shall I say work it out, I will have some understanding! Phil. 2:12-13 says "12Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose."
First of all I want to be real clear that I know the Lord does not require us or even remotely ask us to work FOR our salvation. We see in this scripture that He is asking us to work out our salvation. We could never even come close to what would require for us to receive salvation based on a works thing! From what I have learned in the past and from what I can tell from other translations of the particular phrase, it means to keep on doing as God would have us to do with things of our salvation. That means having our quiet time, listening to the Spirit, responding to promptings, receiving and then applying the discipline to our lives, doing to others as we would have them do to us, honesty, integrity, following His plan, etc. That is working out your salvation. Just as I would work out my body - it is a gift and something that I SHOULD appreciate and take care of!!!!!!!! my salvation is a gift and something that should never be taken for granted and needs to be taken care of! Work it out, girl!!! TO His Glory!
The last part of the verse is the key though! "It is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose." So we are working it out or are we? It says it is God, not us, that works in me to will............. to will means "thelo" in the Greek as opposed to "boulomai". The latter means to will something to happen or even wish it to happen, but doing nothing about it. But our verb here , thelo, means to will or wish something to happen, but then putting forth action to see that it comes forth!! Oh wow!!! that is cool!! So my God wills my salvation to be worked out and then does something about it to see that it happens!! I like that!! Taking control away from me once again and explaining that He really is in control even when for a brief second I think that I am!! Nope, not gonna be - it is all HE!!!
"to act according to his good purpose" This is good too! To act is "energeo" - looks much like...............energy - I like that!!! - to bring about, cause something to happen, set in motion...........................but what................... HIS GOOD PURPOSE. And what is His good purpose??? I thought you would never ask. It means that "what is morally good, not merely good to or PREFERRED by the subject". The things that bring Him pleasure and not necessarily what would bring ME pleasure. He sees the whole picture and can therefore see the total pleasure package where I might think it is pain!!! Oh Lord, I am in awe of you!! Your Word truly is life to me!! Thank you thank you thank you!!! I have an opportunity, possibly, that i need to know Your good pleasure on!! Please speak clearly and thank you in advance for being HUGE!!!!!!!!!!! I love you!!