Sermon Title: No One Like Him
Text: Philippians 2:19-24
I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, so that I too may be cheered by news of you. For I have no one like him, who will be genuinely concerned for your welfare. For they all seek their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ. But you know Timothy’s proven worth, how as a son with a father he has served with me in the gospel. I hope therefore to send him just as soon as I see how it will go with me, and I trust in the Lord that shortly I myself will come also (Philippians 2:19-24, ESV).
Following Christ can’t be summarized by a list of things we believe; it includes beliefs, of course, but it’s not Christianity if it’s not a life that follows Christ in our day-to-day lives. What the world needs more of from us is Christianity in the flesh. They need to see living, breathing examples of it—not just expressions of what we believe.
In our text on Sunday, we noticed how Paul taught the Christians at Philippi to make sure that their “manner of life” was “worthy of the gospel of Christ” (1:27). He encouraged them to think less of themselves and more of others and to follow the example of Christ (2:1-8).
But then, in the paragraph above that we studied, Paul gives them an example that they could relate to. They’d never seen Jesus, but they knew Timothy quite well, and Paul says that this young man is someone they could look to and see an example of what he was trying to teach them.
The sermon made several applications: Following Jesus ought to make us more other-centered and less self-focused. The world—but also our kids, friends, spouses, and co-workers—needs to see the spirit of Christ living in us, just as it was in Timothy. And they see that by the genuineness of the daily expressions of our faith.
- How can our class pray for you or a friend or loved one tonight?
Start Reading (read Philippians 2:19-24)
- What questions do you have after reading the text?
- What do you remember about how things surrounding Paul’s writing this letter may have influenced what he wrote (where Paul writes from, etc.)?
- Have you had someone in your life—a friend or family member, perhaps—who has shown you what following Jesus looks like? Describe it.
- How has Christianity’s influence in the world been diminished by hypocrisy in Christians?
- Read Philippians 2:1-8. There Paul puts Jesus forward as the perfect example of other-focused living. But why might Paul have wanted to use Timothy—someone they knew—as an example as well?
- What do you believe Paul meant in Philippians 1:27 when he wrote that Christians’ “manner of life” ought to be “worthy of the gospel of Christ”?
- “No One Like [You]”: Who in your life might need you to be a Timothy (i.e., someone who shows what following Jesus looks like)?
- When you go back into the “real world” tonight and tomorrow, how do you plan to be “genuinely concerned for [others’] welfare” and seek Christ’s interests instead of your own (2:20-21)?
Start Praying (ACTS acronym)
- Adoration: Praise God for his providing us with people in our lives who have shown us Christ by the way they’ve lived.
- Confession: Ask God to forgive us for the times when we’ve cared more about ourselves than others.
- Thanksgiving: Thank God for Jesus’ beautiful example of selfless giving (2:5-8).
- Supplication: Ask God to empower everyone in your class to leave this room and enter the world with a renewed commitment to live lives that are “worthy of the gospel of Christ.”