My wife and I have recently joined a small group stemming from our Alpha group this past winter. We decided to continue meeting in what the church calls a “life group” where we meet several times a month, share dinner, and then engage in discussion over a selected passage from the Bible. We have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know other people our age who are genuinely interested in being involved in the church and who want to get to know other believers. For our first study, we decided to do a Peter Moore study on Philippians.

In any regard, some interesting questions have come up during our times together. We have addressed everything from the basic questions like “what exactly is grace?” to more thought provoking questions such as “who is your Timothy and who is your Paul?” (i.e. who have you mentored and who has mentored you).

Getting to the point of this brief post, we read and discussed Philippians 2 this past week. When we got to our discussion on Philippians 2.12-13, “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure,” I found myself wondering what exactly was St. Paul talking about here?

Was St. Paul talking more about temporal salvation (our day to day decisions) or more about our eternal salvation? My immediate thought was that St. Paul was sounding very James-esque, but then my wife offered her opinion to the group which made me wonder if St. Paul was talking in a more temporal sense. She suggested that St. Paul was telling the Philippians that you have to live your life in the day-to-day sense and that God will always be with you, but not always there in such a literal sense like holding your hand and telling you what to do.

So, I am very interested in hearing what the Mockingbird community has to say about this… What are some good Law/Gospel opinions on this?