Work It Out!
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling . . . Philippians 2:12 NKJV
We often go for walks, go jogging, we go to gyms and fitness facilities to workout for physical health reasons in order to get in shape or stay in shape. Paul told Timothy that, “bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things . . .” (1 Tim. 4:8). How is it that we value the upkeep of the physical man but we sometimes take for granted the health of the spiritual man?
In our text, Paul’s exhortation to the Philippians was to always obey. In doing so, a believer works out his own salvation, with the fear of God. A workout is always a performance, practice, or exercise to test or improve fitness and ability. This principle can be applied spiritually with respect to one’s salvation. Salvation is a gift that must be worked. But make no mistake about it: salvation cannot be earned by works; it is given only by grace through faith. But what are you doing with your gift of salvation?
To workout your salvation is to obey and produce (John 14:23; John 15:5). You work it out in practice, producing and exhibiting visible evidence of salvation. Your faith justifies you in the sight of God, but works justifies you in the sight of men (Jas. 2:17-18). This practice is more of a “let me see”, not “prove it to me.” You have nothing to prove to no one but yourself (Gal. 4:4). Working out salvation demands that you be careful about what you believe and how you live (Jas. 1:25). Thus, salvation is a gift with God-given expectations and responsibilities (Matt. 25:14-30). Yes, by grace you were saved, through faith, and by grace, you have God-given abilities to obey Him. Just work it out!