Philippians 4:16-20
Phil 4:16 (KJB)
For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity.
Necessity - need or lack
Here is shown a heart for missions. Even when Paul was ministering in Thessalonica, the Philippians had sent him finances to be able to minister and build a local church there. They were willing to look beyond their own borders which shows a missionary heart. We too must look beyond our borders and see the need for missions to the world.
Phil 4:17 (KJB)
Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account.
Abound - Rich abundance without excess
Here is a great principle of partnership. Paul was not desiring a gift for the gift itself, but he knew that when they had partnered with him, that those souls that became saved would be abounding in their account. The word “abound” in the Greek is interesting because it speaks of having a great abundance but not to excess. In other words, can too many people become saved? Whenever we partner with a ministry that is teaching the true Gospel, we automatically become one with that ministry and if it bears any fruit, it is credited to our account. Now I am not sure what that means and how that plays out in our life but that is God’s business, we are to remain faithful and continue to support the sending forth of the Gospel. Some may see this verse as a proof text for some type of rewards but our faithfulness is our responsibility and not an add on for rewards. (Luke 16:9 KJV) And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the mammon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail, they may receive you into everlasting habitations. Luke 16:9 teaches us that we must make friends of the mammon of unrighteousness. Money becomes our enemy when we use it for sinful things because it creates a snare but it becomes our friend when we use it for things of righteousness such as giving to missions to send forth the Gospel. When we use the money God has given us for Gospel outreach, it somehow increases our account, maybe if we are faithful with little, God may begin to bless us with much. (just a thought)
Phil 4:18 (KJB)
But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God.
Abound - To have more than enough
Full - Supplied fully or complete
Sweet smell - Aroma or fragrance
Wellpleasing - Acceptable or pleasing
Here Paul describes well the gift for the Gospel. First Paul tells them that he is abounding and that he is well supplied after he received the things which were sent to him. Apparently, more than money was sent. Maybe ministry materials were also sent to him so he could write letters or other things in the limited capacity of prison. Here is the description of how God views the gift for the purpose of the true Gospel. It is called an aroma which is wellpleasing unto the Lord. The Lord especially looks favorably upon those who sacrifice in giving knowing that they are taking the promises of God on faith that He will supply seed to the sower. Another aspect of giving which the Philippians benefited from was the fact that they benefited spiritually. Giving is not just check writing, it is giving your wherewithal for the purpose of sending forth the Gospel to those who could possibly never repay your gift. It is taking a leap of faith in sending forth the Gospel and without faith it is impossible to please God. This is why He sees sacrificial giving as a sweet aroma. When we give to missions, we will never know the full impact until we get to Heaven and meet those who became saved and those who grew in the faith because we gave. We must not give to those ministries which are not preaching the true gospel or have gospel add-ons such as tongues or date setting or prophecies, etc. We must be very discerning because if we support sinful ministries, then our gift is no longer a pleasing aroma to God, it becomes a stench in His nostrils.
Phil 4:19 (KJB)
But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
Supply - Fill up
Here is another great promise of blessing concerning giving. If we are faithful in giving, God will supply our needs according to His riches in Christ. Now a little explanation of the words “according to.” Many people give out of their abundance but not according to their abundance. The difference is very vast. Let us say that you are on a golf course and you are caddying for a very wealthy man worth ten billion dollars. You give him all the tips for a good game, what iron, what wood to use, etc. and he beats his opponent by 10 strokes on your advice. At the end of the game, he reaches into his pocket and gives you a $1 bill. He is a very wealthy man but he gave out of his wealth and not according to his wealth. God does not give out of His wealth, he gives according to His wealth. First, He gave us salvation through the sacrifice of His Son the Lord Jesus Christ and than afterward, He promises us seed to the sower. That seed can come in the form of money or other things but for us to experience the faithfulness of God in the arena of giving, we must show ourselves to be faithful with what the Lord has already given us. If we are faithless or just plain cheap, then God will withhold blessings from us. Whatever our needs may be, God will supply them in His timing and in His own way.
Phil 4:20 (KJB)
Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
With all the great things Paul has shared with the Philippians, he gives a beautiful doxology that all glory goes to God forever and ever. Paul was so joyful and thankful to God for what He has given to the Christian in the Lord Jesus Christ, for both temporal and the eternal spiritual blessings. He was glorifying the faithfulness of God and how He never forsakes any of His children.