Book Review: Philippians—A Study with Practical Insights

I received a review copy of this book; all opinions expressed are mine.

One of the first things I learned from the study PHILIPPIANS by Joyce Meyer (hardcover; FaithWords) was that the book of Philippians is considered to be “the epistle of joy.” Written by Paul around 61 AD as a letter to Christians in the city of Philippi, his purpose was to encourage the believers there during a difficult time of persecution; in fact, Paul wrote this book while he himself was held captive in a Roman prison. And this study shows us that the messages Paul wrote are as relevant to us today as they were to the early church.

PHILIPPIANS includes some background information about this book of the Bible, along with some history about the city of Philippi. There are 14 chapters on these topics: Paul’s Powerful Opening Words to the Philippians; How to Develop and Maintain Godly Relationships; The Power of Joy and the Simplicity of the Gospel; Surrender, Standing Firm, and Like-mindedness; The Path to a Powerful Life; Our Great Salvation; Let God Word in You and through You to Bless Others; Joy and Trust; True Confidence and True Value; Knowing Christ and the Power of His Resurrection; Pressing On in Faith; Let Go and Grow; Stand Firm, Stay United, and Be at Peace; The Believer’s Mindset, the Power of Contentment, and the Source of Our Strength. These are definitely topics many of us want to grow in our understanding of!

The chapters in this book read like a devotional but there are spaces set apart throughout each one for personal reflection, with prompting questions and room for you to write personal responses or notes. I like the way this study is set up and all the insights and truths Meyer shares in her book, in her easy-to-understand writing style. If you want to be encouraged and inspired, this is a great book to read.

One of the many teachings I like is in Chapter 11, Pressing on in Faith, under the section, Learning to Live in the Present Moment. Meyer writes (in response to Philippians 3:13: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead…):

“If we do not let go of the past, we will miss the new things that God is doing in our lives. God is ready to help us anytime we need help, but we cannot hold on to old things and take hold of new things at the same time.” (p132)

That’s a great practical insight for so many of us! Throughout this study, Meyer shows how true joy, hope, and contentment can only be found through faith in Jesus. Only God can meet all our needs, as Paul reminds us in Philippians 4:19: God will meet all your needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus. That’s a truth and a promise we can count on!

Sharing at Thursday Favorite Things, Wonderful Wednesday, Inspire Me Monday.

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