Whatever is Lovely: Philippians 4:8, Part 5

Philippians 4:8: “Whatever is lovely…think on these things.”

When I think of things that are “lovely,” I think of a mountain lake, so still that the reflection looks like a second mountain; green trees and wildflowers surrounded by the snowy peaks.  Maybe you think of a sunset, or a beautiful model, or a masterpiece of art.  But the Greek word for “lovely” (prosphilḗs) has more of an idea of a gift, an offering, acceptable, a friendly attitude towards, having affection towards.  The Greek word in this form is only used here in the entire New Testament (NT)! 

Read More

Whatever is Pure: Philippians 4:8, Part 4

Philippians 4:8: “Whatever is pure…think on these things.”

If we are to “take every thought captive” (2 Cor. 10:5, NASB), then we need to know what kinds of things deserve to be let in.  Everything else gets entry refused.  Philippians 4:8 gives us a checklist of descriptions about things we should be thinking: true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, worthy to be repeated, virtuous, and praiseworthy.  Today we will be looking at the fourth in this list:  pure.

What does the word pure really mean?  How can we ingest thoughts and images that are pure?  And is it really that important?

Read More

Whatever is Just: Philippians 4:8, Part 3

Philippians 4:8: “…Whatever is just…think on these things.”

If we know we need to stand on guard at the door to our thought lives, then we need to know what to allow in and what to refuse admittance to.  We know already from Philippians 4:8 that we need to admit those things that are true and honorable.  Now we get to the word “just.”  What does “just” mean, and what are some examples of the kinds of things that live in the “just” category?

Read More

Whatever is Honorable: Philippians 4:8, Part 2

If we are to “take every thought captive” (2 Cor. 10:5, NASB), then we need to know what kinds of things deserve to be let in.  Everything else gets entry refused.  Philippians 4:8 gives us a checklist of descriptions about things we should be thinking: true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, worthy to be repeated, virtuous, and praiseworthy.  Today we will be looking at the second in this list:  honorable.

Read More

Whatever is True: Philippians 4:8, Part1

What is Truth?  A question for philosophers of every age and every generation.  Fortunately, we as Jesus-followers have it laid out for us in the Bible, the record of the Truth given to us by God.  So why is it so important – and difficult – to remember to focus on what is true?

Read More

Training our Thoughts: Keeping our Minds On-Track

In this media-rich, information-overloaded society we’re now living in, I believe that keeping our thoughts disciplined is extremely critical.  I also think it’s the easiest thing to overlook and its importance most easily dismissed. Let’s take a deeper look at Philippians 4:8.

Read More

11 Steps to Deeper Bible Study

Have you ever read a 5-minute devotional or an email and thought, “That was great, but I want more!” or “That was a nice story, but it doesn’t really apply to my life right now.”  Or have you ever heard a sermon or read a Scripture passage and wondered, “What does that really mean?” If you have ever wanted to dig deeper into God’s Word, this is the method that I use.

Read More