Philippians 4:4-9

Philippians 4:4-9
Thanksgiving Day C


RejoiceA in the LordB always;C again I will say, Rejoice. 

Notes on verse 4

A “rejoice” = chairo. From char– (to extend favor, lean towards, be inclined to be favorable towards). This is to rejoice, be glad or cheerful; a greeting. This is the root verb that the Greek word for “grace” comes from (charis).
B “Lord” = Kurios. From kuros (authority, supremacy). This is a respectful address meaning master or sir. It refers to one who has control or power greater than one’s own. So, it was also applied to God and Jesus as Master or Lord.
C “always” = pantote. From pas (all, every, each) + tote (then, whether past or future); {from hote (when); from ho (the)}. This is literally every when. It is always, at all times.

Let your gentlenessD be knownE to everyone.F The Lord is near.G 

Notes on verse 5

D “gentleness” = epieikes. 5x in NT. From epi (on, upon, against, what is fitting) + eoika (to be like); {related to eiko (be like, resemble); perhaps akin to eiko (to be weak, submit, yield, give way)}. This is yielding, gentle, reasonable, moderate, patient, equitable, forbearing.
E “be known” = ginosko. This is to know, recognize, realize, perceive, learn. It is knowledge gained through personal experience.
F “everyone” = pas + anthropos. Pas is related to “always” in v4. See note C above. Anthropos is probably from aner (man, male, husband) + ops (eye, face); {from optanomai (to appear, be seen); perhaps from horao (become, seem, appear)}. This is human, humankind. Used for all genders.
G “near” = eggus. Perhaps from agcho (to squeeze). This is nearby or near in time.

Do not be anxiousH about anything, but in everythingI by prayerJ and supplicationK

Notes on verse 6a

H “be anxious” = merimnao. 19x in NT. From merimna (care, worry, anxiety; being separated from the whole); from merizo (to divide, part, share, distribute, assign; figuratively, to differ); from meros (part, share, portion figurative or literal); from meiromai (to get your share, receive one’s allotment). This is to be anxious, distracted, or care for. It is being pulled in different directions – usually a negative.
I “everything” = pas. Same as “everyone” in v5. See note F above.
J “prayer” = proseuche. From proseuchomai (to pray or pray for, to worship or supplicate; more literally exchanging one’s own wishes for God’s); {from pros (advantageous for, at, toward) + euchomai (to wish, make a request, pray)}. This is prayer, worship, or a place where one prays.
K “supplication” = deesis. 18x in NT. From deomai (having an urgent need because one is missing or needing something so it is an earnest appeal or pressing request); from deo (to tie, bind, fasten, impel, compel; to declare something against the law or prohibited). This is a request coming from a deep personal need or want. So, it is supplication or prayer.

with thanksgivingL let your requestsM be made knownN to God.O 

Notes on verse 6b

L “thanksgiving” = eucharistia. Related to “rejoice” in v4. 15x in NT. From eucharistos (thankful, well favored); {from eu (good, well, well done, rightly) + charis (grace, kindness, favor, gratitude, thanks; being inclined to or favorable towards – leaning towards someone to share some good or benefit; literal, figurative, or spiritual; grace as abstract concept, manner, or action); {from chairo (see note A above)}}. This is thankfulness or thanksgiving. It is active gratitude. It is related to the word “eucharist.”
M “requests” = aitema. 3x in NT. From aiteo (to ask, demand, beg, desire). This is literally something asked or the act of asking. So, it is a request or demand. It can also be a petition.
N “made known” = gnorizo. Related to “be known” in v5. From ginosko (see note E above). This is to declare, know, discover, make known.
O “God” = Theos. From Proto-Indo-European origins, meaning do, put, place. This is God or a god in general.

And the peaceP of God, which surpassesQ allR understanding,S

Notes on verse 7a

P “peace” = eirene. Perhaps from eiro (to join, tie together to form a whole). This is one, peace, quietness, rest, peace of mind, harmony. Peace was a common farewell among Jews (i.e. shalom) and this well-wishing included a blessing of health and wholeness for the individual. This word also indicates wholeness and well-being – when everything that is essential is joined together properly. This is peace literally or figuratively. By implication, it is prosperity (but not in the sense of excessive wealth. Prosperity would have meant having enough from day to day.)
Q “surpasses” = huperecho. 5x in NT. From huper (by, under, over, above, under the authority of another) + echo (to have, hold, possess). This is to hold above, surpass, governing, high quality or value. It is to have beyond, excel.
R “all” = pas. Same as “everyone” in v5. See note F above.
S “understanding” = nous. Related to “be known” in v5 & “made known” in v6. From noos (mind) OR from the same as ginosko (see note E above). This is mind, understanding, reasoning faculty, intellect, capacity to reflect. It can refer to God’s mind or human minds – thoughts, feelings, will, or reflective thinking.

will guardT your heartsU and your mindsV in ChristW Jesus.X

Notes on verse 7b

T “guard” = phroureo. Related to “everyone” in v5. 4x in NT. From phrouros (a guard) OR from pro (before, in front of, earlier than) + horao (see note F above). This is to guard, keep, or protect. It is to guard or keep watch as by a military sentinel. Figuratively, it is using active defensive or offensive tactics to guard.
U “hearts” = kardia. Literally the heart, but figuratively mind, character, inner self, will, intention, thoughts, feelings. Also, the center of something. The word heart is only used figuratively in the Old and New Testaments. This is where “cardiac” comes from.
V “minds” = noema. Related to “be known” in v5 & “made known” in v6 & “understanding” in v7. 6x in NT. From noeo (to think, understand, conceive, realize, see; one who thinks things through sufficiently to reach a conclusion or value judgment; moral reasoning.); {from nous (see note S above)}. This is thought, scheme, feeling, heart, purpose, understanding, perception, intellect. It is what the mind produces – the result of thinking.
W “Christ” = Christos. From chrio (consecrate by anointing with oil; often done for prophets, priests, or kings). Literally, the anointed one, Christ. The Greek word for Messiah.
X “Jesus” = Iesous. From Hebrew Yehoshua (Joshua, the Lord is salvation); {from YHVH (proper name of the God of Israel; the self-existent and eternal one); {from havah (to become) or from hayah (to come to pass, become, be)} + yasha (to deliver, defend, help, preserve, rescue; properly, to be open, wide or free, which implies being safe. So, in a causative sense, this is to free someone)}. This is Jesus or Joshua in Greek – the Lord saves or the Lord is salvation.

Finally,Y brothersZ and sisters, whatever is true,AA whatever is honorable,BB whatever is just,CC

Notes on verse 8a

Y “finally” = loipon. 13x in NT. From loipos (the rest, remained, remnant, other, residue); from leipo (to leave behind, be lacking). This is what remains, from now on, finally.
Z “brothers” = adelphos. From a (with, community, fellowship) + delphus (womb). This is a brother in a literal or figurative sense. It is also used of another member of the Church.
AA “true” = alethes. From a (not) + lanthano (concealed, hidden, unnoticed; to shut one’s eyes to, unwittingly, unawares). This is true, unconcealed; true because it is in concert with fact and reality – attested. Literally, what cannot be hidden; truth stands up to test and scrutiny and is undeniable, authentic.
BB “honorable” = semnos. 4x in NT. From sebo (to worship, revere, adore, be devout; properly this is personally placing a high value on someone or something, showing respect). This is honorable, dignified, series. It is what is weighty or highly respected – seen as majestic.
CC “just” = dikaios. From dike (the principle of justice; that which is right in a way that is very clear; a decision or the execution of that decision; originally, this word was for custom or usage; evolved to include the process of law, judicial hearing, execution of sentence, penalty, and even vengeance; more commonly, it refers to what is right); may be from deiknumi (to show, point out, exhibit; figurative for teach, demonstrate, make known). This is correct, righteous, just, or a righteous person. It implies innocent or conforming to God’s standard of justice.

whatever is pure,DD whatever is pleasing,EE whatever is commendable,FF

Notes on verse 8b

DD “pure” = hagnos. 8x in NT. Perhaps related to hagios (sacred, holy, set apart, different other; physically pure, morally blameless, or ceremonially set apart). This is holy, sacred, pure ethically, ritually, or ceremonially. It is someone or something prepared for worship, chaste, unadulterated, pure to the core. It is undefiled by sin. Figuratively it can be innocent, modest, perfect.
EE “pleasing” = prosphiles. 1x in NT. From pros (at, towards, for, with) + phileo (friendship love and fondness with personal attachment; kiss as a sign of love deriving from this personal affection -cherishing); {from philos (dear, beloved, a friend, an associate; friendship with personal affection, a trusted confidante; love from personal experience with another person)}. This is pleasing, lovely, grateful, worthy of affection. It is someone who is prized or acceptable.
FF “commendable” = euphemos. Related to “thanksgiving” in v6. 1x in NT. From eu (see note L above) + pheme (saying, news, rumor, fame) {from phemi (to say, declare, speak comparatively through contrasts, bring to light); from phao (shine)}. This is literally “of good repute” – well spoken of. So, it is laudable.

if there is any excellenceGG and if there is anything worthy of praise,HH think aboutII these things. 

Notes on verse 8c

GG “excellence” = arete. 5x in NT. Perhaps from the same as arrhen (male, man); from arsen (male, man) or from airo (raise, take up, lift, remove). This is moral goodness, excellence, praise. Properly, it means manliness and so is meant to express valor, virtue, or uprightness.
HH “praise” = epainos. 11x in NT. From epi (on, upon, to, what is fitting) + ainos (praise, saying, story, proverb). This is fitting praise, fame, approval. It is recognizing something or someone that is deserving of praise.
II “think about” = logizomai. From logos (word, statement, speech, analogy; here, word as an account or accounting; can also be a word that carries an idea or expresses a thought, a saying; a person with a message or reasoning laid out in words; by implication, a topic, line of reasoning, or a motive; can be used for a divine utterance or as Word – Christ); from lego (to speak, tell, mention). This is this is to compute or reckon up, to count; figuratively, it is coming to a conclusion or decision using logic; taking an inventory in a literal or figurative sense.

As for the things that you have learnedJJ and receivedKK and heardLL and noticedMM in me, doNN them, and the God of peace will be with you.

Notes on verse 9a

JJ “learned” = manthano. This is to learn, ascertain, understand. It is knowledge that one gets from personal experience and it implies reflecting on that experience. It can also focus on gaining knowledge by learning facts. This root is where the Greek word for disciple comes from (mathetes).
KK “received” = paralambano. From para (beside, by, in the presence of) + lambano (active acceptance/taking of what is available or what has been offered; emphasizes the choice and action of the individual). This is to receive, take, acknowledge, associate with. It can also mean to take on an office or to learn.
LL “heard” = akouo. This is hear or listen, but it also means to understand by hearing. This is where the word “acoustics” comes from.
MM “noticed” = horao. Related to “everyone” in v5 & “guard” in v7. See note F above.
NN “do” = prasso. This is to do or practice – something done on an on-going basis or by habit. It can also mean to accomplish, attend, or commit.

Image credit: “Day 097” by toshi.mono, 2010.

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