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Read Introduction to Philippians


“The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.”


The words “learned” and “received” are a pair. “Learned” refers to the principles of the Christian life we form from sitting under the teaching of God’s Word. “Received” is the response to sitting under God’s Word. 

‘and received”

“Received” takes up the reception of instruction. The word means to receive by being beside someone. The Philippians received instruction as a matter of personal experience. They listened to Paul’s teaching because they “received” from Paul’s person. When we appropriate truth, we learn it builds an edification construct in our soul. We become stronger as we appropriate what we know. 

The word “received” also means to give assent. The word contains the idea of receiving with a welcoming attitude. The Philippians recognize Paul’s teaching as the truth of God. They acknowledge that it is the Word of God. They respond with positive volition. They understand their responsibility to the truth. “As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby” (I Pet. 2:2). 


 Application of truth to experience is essential in building an edification complex in the soul.


 As we sit under a pastor and learn the truth, we assume responsibility for the truth. If we receive the truth and do not accept responsibility for what we know, we violate an essential principle of Christianity — the principle of application.   Biblical truth is never static; it is always dynamic. If we neglect God’s truth, we disrespect its dynamic. 

Euodia and Syntyche knew the truth (Php 4:2,3) of unity among Christians but did not apply it. They cast aspersions on God and his Word by neglecting the appropriation of truth.