God’s Fullness and Our Bounty

Paul, when writing to the Philippians concerning their support for him expresses a desire that they would be supplied by God. Maybe this wasn’t really a desire, but a statement of fact.  Here’s the actual quote – [Phl 4:19 NKJV] 19 And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Jesus himself taught that God is the provider for all that man needs in a physical way (Mat 6:24-34). Certainly, it stands to reason that God, who created all that exists and set in order every manner of nature which knows what it is we need, and what we need to thrive.  The very existence of our planet is perfect.  Perfectly situated in relation to other celestial bodies so that we have seasons, day, night, cycles of every kind of weather.  He created the plants which sustain life as food, the animals from which man has been clothed, assisted in labors, and which we often enjoy filling our bellies with.  All of this, as Paul observes in Rom 1:20 attests to the Creator who formed it all, His attributes, His power, His authorship.

Physical Bounties

The Philippians had from their own abundance supplied for the needs of the Apostle, and Paul is recognizing that while it was their generosity, it was God’s abundant supply which gave them the means to do so.  So we see here at the end of the section of text that Paul grants a sort of prayer on their behalf and that God would supply them not just physically, but especially spiritually through the richness of Jesus. 

It is so easy in our modern world to listen to the world’s praise of self, and of ourselves and quickly believe that we by our strength or our wisdom, knowledge, or skill have provided for ourselves.  How quick we are to forget how our tables have been set.  It may be by our labors that we earn our means, but all of it is by God’s providence, out of His abundance.

Spiritual Bounties

God’s abundance toward us is not contained only in the physical things of this life though.  He has done so much for us spiritually.  Paul describes it as a purpose and plan that predates that of time itself.

[Eph 1:3-6 NKJV] 3 Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly [places] in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.

Throughout the Bible, we see God’s plan set forth and working toward the end of righting man’s wrong.  All of this culminates in the fullness of God’s time that He would send His Son, that this Son would sacrifice His own life for the remission of our sins, and that we might be called sons through the adoption we have in Christ Jesus.

Man was only deserving of death because of sin, yet God’s grace and mercy have been extended toward us that we might live, and that in Christ we might have life eternal.

Our Contentment

Seeing then the fullness of God’s provision for us in this life and for eternity, we should be content with such blessings as He provides.  He wants us to have faith in Him, in His ability rather than our own, in His provision rather than the illusion of our own, in His way rather than our way.  We must learn by trials, by perseverance, as we go along the way, that He is providing all that we need.  Such instills within us greater faith.  It is when we surrender to Him and lean upon Him that our faith is increased and we become stronger spiritually.

Paul provided a blessing to the Ephesians in this manner: [Eph 3:16-19 NKJV] 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what [is] the width and length and depth and height– 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

Paul didn’t want them to lose heart at the tribulations which he was enduring (recall this letter was one of his prison epsistles).  Rather, he desired that they would be uplifted and streghthened by that which God supplies.  In Christ we are all of His household.  He is the Father then of us all and provides for us all fully. So we should depend on Him for He is always dependable in all that He has, is, and will provide.

[Heb 13:5 NKJV] 5 [Let your] conduct [be] without covetousness; [be] content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Let us then not waver in looking to Him to supply our abundance, and may we desire fervently to be content with that which He provides.  When we receive His blessings, it should move us in reverence and love to honor Him for what we have in this life.

Are we really leaning upon Him?  Are we trusting Him?  Are we being filled both physically and spiritually by Him?  When we won’t let Him provide in these ways, we will find ourselves always lacking in the contentment department.  Trust, Obey, be filled.