The Paradox of Contentment

TEXTPhil. 4:11-13

INTRODUCTION:

A.      CONTENTMENT – VICE OR VIRTUE – PARADOX.

          1.       Much anxiety – need for contentment, peace of mind.

          2.       Much apathy and indifference – need for some discontent.

B.      HOW DOES THIS APPLY TO ME?

I.     THE REALM OF CONTENTMENT.

A.      DEFINITION OF CONTENTMENT:

          1.       Not “satisfaction, the state of having one’s desires fully appeased.” 

                   One can be fully satisfied, yet discontent.

          2.       Not suppression of desire for better things.  Not ceasing in our efforts

                   to better ourselves.

          3.       It is “submission to the circumstance of life without anxiety in the

                   belief that God will supply our needs.  That state of not being

                   disquieted or disturbed by desire, even though not every one is

                   gratified.  THE ATTITUDE OF SATISFACTION.

B.      CONTENTMENT EMPHASIZED IN THE SCRIPTURES.

          1.       With our living ( Luke 3:14 ).

          2.       With our material possessions ( 1 Tim. 6:6-8;  Heb. 13:5 ).

C.      THE NECESSITY OF LEARNING CONTENTMENT.

          1.       Not born with it – must learn it.

          2.       Paul learned it from Jesus

                   a.       His example ( Luke 9:58 )

                   b.       His command ( Luke 12:15 ).

                   c.       His promise ( Matt. 7:7-8;  Matt.28:20 ).

II.    THE REALM OF DISCONTENT.

A.      CONTENTMENT CAN BE A VICE.

          1.       Sinful to be content with our shortcomings.

                   a.       Content with our lot desired.

                   b.       Content with one’s self condemned.

                   c.       Phil. 3:12-16.  Moral progress dependent on discontent.

          2.       Sinful to be content with suffering or ignorance

                   ( Gal. 6:10;  Rom. 10:13-17;  Heb. 5:12-14 ).

B.      THE CHURCH IS NO PLACE FOR CONTENTMENT.

          1.       With present numbers or attendance.

          2.       With knowledge or lack of it.

          3.       With our efforts when they are not 100%.

CONCLUSION:

A.      CONTENT WITH OUR LOT, NOT WITH OUR SPOT.

B.      IF YOU ARE NOT A CHRISTIAN, YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO BE

          CONTENT ( Acts 8:36 ).