Thursday, March 22, 2018
Philippians 1:27-28 27 Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God.
When I was a teenager I began to be very concerned with the way I looked. (I know what you are thinking – I had a lot to be concerned about.) I took notice of what other people were wearing and the current styles of haircuts, and I wanted to look my best. One day, when I was a sophomore in high school, I was wearing a royal blue shirt, and one of the cheerleaders from the 2,600-student school I attended said to me, “You look really good in blue. It brings out your beautiful eyes.” I think I wore blue every day from then on.
In the good old days of my youth, there was a term used to describe clothing that looked good on someone. I remember my dad using this term once when describing a new dress my mom was wearing. He said, “That dress is very becoming on you.” What he meant was that the style, color, and fit of the dress brought out the best in mom, just like the blue shirt brought out the best in my eyes.
We have all taken notice of things like that for ourselves and for others. We still wear certain types of clothing and certain colors because we know they are very becoming on us.
That is the same word that the Apostle Paul uses when he says, “conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.” In fact, the King James Version of the Bible uses the word “becoming”. Paul wants us to understand that our conduct is to be chosen in the same way we choose our clothing – make sure it is becoming.
But our conduct is chosen for a different purpose than our clothing. We choose our clothes to bring out the best in us. We choose our conduct to bring out the best of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. At least we should. Just as our clothing is a representation of who we believe we are, so our conduct is a representation of who we believe Jesus to be.
Check out these other uses of the word “worthy” by Paul:
Colossians 1:10 …so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.
1 Thessalonians 2:12 …we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.
Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,
The big question we all must ask and answer for ourselves is this: “Is my conduct becoming to Jesus?” In other words, when people observe my behavior, do they see the best of Jesus in me?
Here’s a thought: why not ask them. We ask them how our clothing looks on us, and we seem to trust their opinion. Let’s ask them how our conduct looks on us, so that whatever happens in life, whether good or bad, our conduct is always becoming to Christ.