In Everything and in All Things
Phil. 4:12 I know also how to be abased, and I know how to abound; in everything and in all things I have learned the secret both to be filled and to hunger, both to abound and to lack. (13) I am able to do all things in Him who empowers me.
In verse 12 Paul uses the puzzling expression “in everything and in all things.” What is the difference between “everything” and “all things”? We experience one thing at a time. We cannot experience all things at once. Therefore, according to our experience in time, it is everything. But after a long period of experiences has gone by, the everything becomes all things.
We need to recall that the book of Philippians was written according to experience. In time we experience one thing after another. This fact is denoted by the word “everything.”
But after a prolonged period of experience, the everything becomes all things. The words “in everything” refer to a particular time when we experience a certain thing of the Lord. The words “all things” refer to a broad range of experiences over a period of time. Paul could say that both on a particular occasion and on all occasions, both at a certain time and throughout the course of his life, he had learned the secret. Paul experienced Christ moment by moment.
On the one hand, he experienced Christ in particular things at particular times. On the other hand, he experienced Christ in all things and at all times.
What a blessing it is to receive such a word concerning the experience of Christ! I hope that the young people especially will realize how blessed they are and will pray, “Lord, even in my youth I desire to seek You, pursue You, and experience You in the way presented in the book of Philippians. As far as the normal experience and enjoyment of Christ are concerned, I want to be today’s Paul. I do not seek to be a great apostle, evangelist, or a worker for Christ. But I do desire to be a normal Christian experiencing You and enjoying You in everything day by day, even in all things, for my whole life.” May we all aspire to enjoy Christ to such an extent.