Experiencing Christ

A Salvation in a Difficult Situation

Phil. 1:19  For I know that for me this will turn out to salvation through your petition and the bountiful supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,  (20)  According to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I will be put to shame, but with all boldness, as always, even now Christ will be magnified in my body, whether through life or through death.

The kind of salvation we need depends on our situation. If we are under God’s judgment, we need a salvation that rescues us from this. If we are under Satan’s hand, we need a salvation appropriate to that situation. Likewise, if we are troubled by our temper or face difficulties in our married life, we need still further kinds of salvation. Because Paul was a prisoner, he needed a salvation that applied to his situation in prison. Paul’s case was extraordinary. He had not committed any crime. His imprisonment was due to the fact that he preached Christ. Because he preached Christ, Paul was arrested and eventually imprisoned. No doubt, Paul suffered there in prison. He must have been despised and treated with contempt. To be sure, he needed a specific kind of salvation. By this I do not mean that what he needed was release from prison. No, he needed to experience salvation there in prison.
Here [in verse 20] we see that Paul’s expectation was that he would not be put to shame. Suppose Paul wept over his situation. Would not that have been a shame? His weeping would have indicated that he was defeated, that he had lost his faith, confidence, and trust in the Lord. Or suppose that Paul became angry with the jailer and argued with him. This also would have been a shame. However, if Paul could rejoice no matter how he was treated, that would be a glory. In order to maintain such a victorious standing as an apostle of Christ, Paul needed a particular kind of salvation.

In verse 20 we see two aspects of the salvation needed by Paul. The first aspect was that Paul would not be put to shame in anything; the second, that Christ would be magnified in Paul’s body. Paul expected that his situation would turn out to his salvation so that in nothing he would be put to shame, but that Christ would be magnified in his body.

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