God At Work In You

Title: God At Work In You

Bible Book: Philippians 2 : 12

Author: Herman T. Williams

Subject: God In You



Nowhere in the New Testament is the work of salvation more clearly stated that in Philippians 2:12-13 (NIV) 12 "Therefore, 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, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose."

What is Paul talking about? He is encouraging the Philippians, and his readers today, not to stop halfway, but go on to completion in salvation. Go on until the work of salvation is fully wrought out in you. What is salvation anyway? We use the term freely, but what does the Bible men when the Bible uses the word, SALVATION?


A. Rescue from danger, sin and death.
B. Renewing of the spirit.
C. Restoration of a right relationship with God

Romans 5:10 (NIV) "For if, when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life."

In both the Old and New Testaments, God’s salvation includes rescue, renewal and restoration accomplished through the work of His Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Let’s look more closely at the biblical view of salvation.


A. It is God that works in us the desire to be saved.

It is true that our hearts are restless till they rest in Him. But it is also true that we could not even begin to seek Him until He has already found us. We did not just wake up one morning and say: “I think I will be saved today”. John 6:44 (NIV) "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him... “

B. The continuance of that process is dependent on God.

Without His help there can be no progress in goodness. No sin can be conquered and no virtue achieved except through His work in us.

C. The end of the process is with God.

The end is friendship with God where we are His and He is ours. The work of salvation is begun, continued and ended with God. There can be no salvation without God. But what God offers, man must receive.

John 1:12 (NIV) "Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God..."


Paul set down five signs of salvation: Listen carefully.

A. There is the sign of effective action.

The Christian must give continual evidence in his life that he is working out his salvation. You and I understand this better by saying we are to “live out” our salvation daily. The great tragedy is that many Christians never move on in their Christian life. We continue to be slaves of the same habits and the same failures over and over and over again - guilty of the same failures. But the TRUE Christian life must be a continual progress because it is a journey toward God.

B. There is a sign of fear and trembling.

This is not the fear and trembling of the slave cringing before his master, but the fear and trembling that makes us SEEK God because we know that we cannot effectively face life without Him. It also comes from the horror of grieving God. When we love someone, we are not afraid of what they will do to us, but of what we will do to them. The Christian’s great fear is of crucifying Christ again.

C. There is the sign of serenity and certainty.

The Christian will do all things without murmuring and questioning. It is the word used of the rebellious murmurings of the Israelites in the desert.

D. There is the sign of purity.

Christians are to be blameless, innocent and without blemish. Blameless expresses what the Christian is to the world. His life is pure and no fault can be found in him. Innocent expresses what the Christian is to himself. It means sincerity of thought and character. Blemish describes what the Christian is in the sight of God. It is used in connection with sacrifices fit to be offered to God. The Christian life must be such that it can be offered like an unblemished sacrifice to God.

E. Finally, there is the sign of missionary endeavor.

The Christian offers to all the world, the Word of Life. We want ALL people to know Him as we know Him. We want ALL people to serve Him as we serve Him. And we want ALL people to love Him as we love Him.


Isn’t that the way to live? Think what the world would be like if all Christians followed this pattern. Philippians 2:12 (NIV) Therefore, 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...

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