"Dedicated to strengthening and encouraging the Body of Christ."

The Life Of Triumph – The Spirit-filled Life

By Robert C. McQuilkin 

    The Apostle Paul knew the secret of the life of triumph.  To us as Christians he gave this secret in the following words, “…To me to live is Christ…” (Phil. 1:21).

    The expression “To me to live is Christ” may be thought of in terms of the life attitude – making Christ the center of all and finding the meaning of life in Him – or in terms of the results in practical daily living, or in terms of the power for victorious living.

    What kind of a life was lived by Paul, as suggested by these striking words?  His letter to the Philippians is a most personal letter, containing many testimonies as to his own Christian life, and also exhortations to his friends in Philippi as to how they should live.  We can glean from the letter such characteristics as these concerning normal Spirit-filled Christian life.

    It is a life of joy:  “Rejoice in the Lord always…” (Phil. 4:4).

    It is a life of peace:  “Be careful for nothing…the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (4:6-7).

    It is a life of suffering and conflict:  “…Unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer for His sake” (1:29).

    It is a life of humility:  “…In lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves…Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (2:3, 5).

    It is a life of assurance:  “Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (1:6).

    It is a life of obedience and human responsibility:  “…As ye have always obeyed…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (2:12).

    It is a life of heroic and ceaseless service:  “…For the work of Christ he was nigh unto death, not regarding his life…” (2:30); “…Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death” (1:20).

    It is a life with a passion for souls:  “…The things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel…Christ is preached…with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel” (1:12, 18, 27).

    It is a life centered in the Cross:  “That I may know Him…Being made conformable unto His death” (3:10).

    It is a life of prayer:  “…In every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God” (4:6).

    It is a life of power:  “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (4:13); “…That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection…” (3:10).

    It is a life that witnesses to unbelievers:  “…Blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world” (2:15).

    It is a life of sacrificial giving of money:  “…Your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now.  ...The things which were sent from you, an odor of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God” (1:5; 4:18).

    It is a life with material needs met:  “…My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (4:19).

    It is a life of contentment:  “…For I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content” (4:11).

    It is a life of high thinking:  “Finally...whatsoever things are true…honest…just…pure…lovely…of good report, if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things” (4:8).

    It is a growing life:  “…That your love may abound yet more and more....  I press toward the mark…” (1:9; 3:14).

    It is a life of certain future glory:  “…To die is gain.  ...We look for the Savior…who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body…” (1:21; 3:20-21).

    It is a fully surrendered life:  “I count all things but loss…that I may win Christ” (3:8).

    It is a life lived by grace:  “…Be found in Him, not having mine own righteous­ness…but that which is through the faith of Christ…” (3:9).

    This is not a complete list of what is found in Philippians, nor has an effort been made to include a full list of references given with each characteristic. 

    This life triumphant is lived by supernatural power.  That is made plain in what is revealed in Philippians.  We cannot be Christlike by imitating Christ or striving to be like Him without being born from above.  “Christ liveth in me” was Paul’s secret of having manifested in his life the things of Christ.

    As there is a supernatural side, so is there the human responsibility.  Our part is surrender and faith.  When I say, “To me to live is Christ,” it means both a complete surrender, a counting all else but loss and dross, and it means a complete faith in Him who now has charge of this life.

    Choose ye this day between:  “To me to live is self” and “To me to live is Christ.”