GRACE BIBLE CHURCH
Robert R. McLaughlin Bible Ministries
The Tree of Life is a weekly teaching summary.
From the week ending 11/21/04
Feelings and Emotions.
So far our corrected translation of Philippians 4:10">PHI 4:10 says, Now, I have received much inner happiness by means of the Lord greatly, that now at length you have revived your concern or thinking for me;
The Greek word for concern is the present active infinitive from the verb phroneo which means to care or to be concerned about others with objective thinking, or to be compassionate and caring for others. This was the attitude of the believers in the Philippian church even though Paul had made a great mistake in Jerusalem.
The fact that they were thinking about him means two things:
1. They appreciated all the doctrine that Paul taught them. He evangelized many of them, and he taught them doctrine and they were remembering him in a very wonderful way simply because the original doctrine in their souls came from him. They appreciated doctrine so much, that he would be a pleasant memory to them throughout time and eternity. Every pastor will have to stand before God and give an account for what they taught members of their congregation, 1Pe 5:1-4, JAM 3:1, Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we shall incur a stricter judgment [evaluation at the Judgment Seat of Christ].
COL 1:28, And we proclaim Him, inculcating every believer and teaching every believer with all wisdom in order that we may present every person complete or mature in Christ.
So when someone is your right pastor and you learn doctrine from them, he is one person you will appreciate all your life. That appreciation goes with the fact that the right priority in your soul is doctrine and that is more important than anything in your life.
2. The people you love, you think about, just like the things that are most important to you, you think about. These things are then the number one priority in your soul.
Again Philippians 4:10">PHI 4:10 says, Now, I have received much inner happiness by means of the Lord greatly, that now at length you have revived.
The phrase have revived is the aorist active indicative from the verb anathallo which is anethalete. Ana is a preposition meaning again, thallo is a verb meaning to flourish or to thrive. The word means to thrive again, grow again, recover activity, bloom again, to revive, here it is used of those whose condition and affairs are becoming more prosperous. Paul is saying I am happy that you're again showing such strong concern for me. They have broken the maturity barrier and advanced to supergrace and at that point their capacity for love extended toward God in category one love, and toward the apostle Paul in category three love which is manifested by caring for friends.
Remember the principle: Friends come and go, but a true friend sticks by you like family, PRO 18:24. This is true friendship and is a very rare thing to have and a hard thing to find.
PRO 17:17 says, Friends love through all kinds of weather, and, as the apostle learned, one way to tell who the real friends are is when you are faced with difficult times. JOB 6:14 tells us that a true friend will be gracious and kind to you when you're going through a difficult time. When you're prospering, everyone is your friend but, when you go through adversity, you will discover who your friends really are.
The point is that a true friend is never known until a man is in need and this is what the apostle Paul discovered. The Philippians have become very interested in the apostle Paul, they have revived their thinking concerning him. They have sent a large sum of money to carry Paul during his imprisonment because Paul is not in a littoral prison, a place like a dungeon with chains on him, rather he is living in his own apartment with a Roman guard watching him. Therefore it required a great deal of money, and the money came from the Philippian congregation.
Epaphroditus, the pastor of the Philippian church, is the bearer of the offering in PHI 2:25-30, Now I consider it necessary to send face to face with you Epaphroditus, my brother also my fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger and minister with reference to my need; because he was longing for all of you and was distressed because you had heard that he had become critically ill. For in fact, he was so critically ill that he nearly died, but God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, lest I should have sorrow stacked upon sorrow. Therefore I have sent him with special urgency in order that when you see him again you might have intensified happiness and I may be less concerned or less anxious about you. Receive him [Epaphroditus] therefore in the Lord with all inner happiness, also keep on holding men like him in highest honor. because on account of the business of Christ, He came close to dying, when he had gambled his life in order to make up for your lack of service to me.
All the spiritual advance of the Philippian congregation has come through three men, Paul, Timothy and Epaphroditus, and these men, of course, have been right pastors in succession. This dramatizes the importance of the right pastor in the scheme of things during the dispensation of the church.
So again Philippians 4:10">PHI 4:10, Now, I have received much inner happiness by means of the Lord greatly, that now at length you have revived your concern or thinking for me; indeed, you also were thinking about me
The prepositional phrase Epi plus the locative of the relative pronoun hos is a Greek idiom meaning indeed and then we have the conjunction kai meaning also; so we have indeed also you were concerned
That means to be concerned here, because they knew of Paul's imprisonment and they assumed that he needed funds and the assumption was correct so the offering was very timely.
The particle de comes next and is translated but and is used to set up a contrast between a past concern with no opportunity to express it in contrast to now a present concern with the opportunity to express it. This is the difference between an impulsive giver and a generous person. An impulsive giver is a self centered person calling attention to himself; he is often considered generous and wants everyone to think he's that way. A truly generous person lays back and waits for a need to arise in his periphery and then he steps in and take care of it, there's no impulse at all and that's the way the Philippians were, generous, but not impulsive givers.
Notice some principles that Paul taught upon this subject as he used the Philippian church as the visual aid.
1. Giving is an expression of the royal family honor code, Rom 15:26-27. Charity is from God; socialism and welfare are from man.
2. Giving is an expression of free will, without gimmicks, without coercion, 2Co 8:3. This was a reference to the Philippian church. 2Co 8:3, For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability they gave of their own accord, Their giving was a sign of their spiritual growth.
3. Giving is an expression of mental attitude in every circumstance of life. 2CO 8:1-2, Now, brethren, we wish to make known to you the grace of God which has been given in the churches of Macedonia, that in a great ordeal of affliction [in the midst of severe testing and great pressure] the superabundance of their happiness and their deep poverty overflowed in rich generosity."
Even though under adversity, they shared the happiness of God and having that mental attitude, they gave even while in deep poverty.
4. Giving must express an attitude toward the Lord before it can express an attitude toward others. 2CO 8:5, "And not even as we anticipated, but they gave first of themselves to the Lord, then they gave to us by the will of God."
They were occupied with Christ and had personal love for God the Father which motivated their giving.
5. Giving depends on the consistent perception, metabolization and application of Bible doctrine after salvation. 2CO 8:7, But just as you abound in everything, in faith and utterance and knowledge and in all earnestness and in the love we inspired in you, see that you abound in this gracious work also.
Just as they you excelled in everything in faith-rest and in doctrine and in knowledge and in all diligence and in virtue-love, they also excelled in grace giving.
6. Precedence for giving is derived from the dispensation of the hypostatic union and is predicated on grace. 2CO 8:9,"For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich [eternal God], yet for your sake He became poor [true humanity], so that you through His poverty [being judged for our sins] might become rich."
7. Giving is a mental attitude related to an overt act. 2CO 8:12, "For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable on the basis of what one has, not on the basis of what one does not have."
Willingness counts for giving, if you have nothing to give.
8. Giving is related to motivation from metabolized doctrine in the right lobe of the soul. 2CO 9:7, "Each one, as he has determined in his right lobe, so give, not from distress of mind or under compulsion or pressure of emotions; for God loves a gracious giver."
9. God in His matchless grace provides both the spiritual motivation and monetary capital for grace giving. 2CO 9:8,"And God is able to make all grace abound to you, that in always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have abundance for every good deed."
10. God in His matchless grace provides both the monetary capital for grace giving and makes it part of your Christian service. 2CO 9:10, "Now He who supplies seed for the sower and bread for food, will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness."
11. Generosity of mental attitude results in generosity of giving. 2CO 9:11, "You will be made rich in every way, so that you can be generous on every occasion; and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God."
Giving is never a strain. When it says that you will be made rich in every way, it refers to the many blessings that we receive above and beyond just materialism. GEN 12:2, blessings of success, Gen 17:16, blessings of posterity, DEU 7:13, blessings in business, Deu 15:4, blessing of finances, DEU 23:20, blessing of land, DEU 28:12, blessing of prosperity, DEU 30:16, blessing of property, PSA 5:12, Blessing of divine protection, PSA 29:11, blessing of peace (inner peace), PSA 132:15, blessing of more blessing, GEN 49:25, blessing of sexual prosperity, GEN 24:35, blessing of silver and gold, 2SA 6:11, blessing of entire household, DEU 29:5, blessing of divine character, 1KI 3:13, blessing of riches and honor, EXO 23:25, blessing of health and no sickness, 1KI 3:14, blessing of length of days, DEU 7:15, blessing of vengeance upon your enemies, ISA 41:10, blessing of strength.
You will truly be wealthy in every way, so that you can be generous in every way, producing great praise to God.
12. Giving is a result of Christian service. 2CO 9:12, "For this service which you perform is not only supplying the needs of God's people, but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanksgivings to God."
The Philippian church was generous, not impulsive and Paul had a need, they were not trying to gain Paul's attention or approbation. They simply expressed their love for Paul, their love for Bible doctrine, but more important their love of the Lord. They gave in exactly the right way; no strings of any kind were attached. This is the principle of the Royal Family honor code and the principle of reciprocity. Here is where gracious responsibility comes into the picture, Rom 15:26-27, For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things.
The principle is that local churches have benefited spiritually from doctrine and are now motivated by that doctrine to give to the destitute Jews in Jerusalem. These Jewish believers have been persecuted because of doctrine. These Gentile believers recognize their debt of gratitude for the doctrine brought to them.
God has prospered them financially; they sought to share their prosperity with those who had been the source of their prosperity. They were motivated by impersonal love to do something for these other believers, even though many Jewish believers were still legalistic, apostate and often antagonistic. They responded to the motivation in their own soul, rather than the attitude of the object. The object of their grace attitude, courtesy, and gift was not important. The sharing of spiritual prosperity in doctrine motivates the sharing of material prosperity in money. This makes giving an honor code function with emphasis on motivation from doctrine in the soul.
The purpose of giving is a spiritual function of motivation, Christian giving is a matter of true worship of God. This is reciprocation between doctrinal teaching and resultant material prosperity. Because the mature believer has been spiritually blessed from doctrine and materially blessed through imputation to God's perfect righteousness resident in him, therefore he is motivated from doctrine to give to others. The function of the royal family honor code is to make issues clear that pertain to the economic survival of the local church, but it is not to make deals or beg for money. As a part of the royal family honor code, the Bible also teaches that the Pastor-teacher exchanges spiritual blessing to the congregation for material blessing from the congregation. This fulfills the principle of mutual blessing by association.
Giving reflects the mental attitude of the congregation toward their Pastor-teacher and establishes a partnership between the Pastor and the congregation. The congregation provides the financial contribution as they are spiritually blessed by the Pastor's teaching. Then the most important give of all is mentioned 2CO 9:15, Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
Thank God for this gift, His gift, TLJC, No language can praise it enough!
JOH 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
So again Philippians 4:10">PHI 4:10, Now, I have received much inner happiness by means of the Lord greatly, that now at length you have revived your concern or thinking for me; indeed, you also were thinking about me, but you lacked the opportunity to express it.
Having compassion and being concerned has nothing to do with feelings or emotions, but with the thought content of the soul. This then has led us to the study of Feelings and Emotions:
Point 1 was our definition and description.
Emotion is part of the essence of the soul. Emotion has two functions in life as a part of the soul, a normal and an abnormal function. The emotions of the soul are designed to respond to what is in the mentality of the soul. The other parts of the soul include self-consciousness, volition, and the two frontal lobes, mind [nous], heart [kardia]. Emotion is the female part of the soul and is to respond to the right lobe, the male part of the soul.
Category two-love (right man, right woman) illustrates the relationship between the emotion and the right lobe.
1CO 11:3, But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ.
1CO 11:7, For a man ought not to have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man.
1CO 11:9, for indeed man was not created for the woman's sake, but woman for the man's sake.
1CO 11:11, However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman.
The divine order of the soul is that the emotion responds to the thoughts in the heart as the right woman is to respond to her right man. The right lobe [heart] possesses a frame of reference, designed for thought, the memory center, vocabulary and categorical storage, the conscience, the momentum department, the wisdom department, and the subconscious and also contains the norms and standards.
Inside the right lobe of the soul is everything that should dominate emotion so that it become what it was designed to be by God; an appreciator and responder of things.
EPH 5:22-24, Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.
EPH 5:33, and let the wife see to it that she respect her husband.
COL 3:18, Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.
EPH 5:25, Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her;
EPH 5:28, So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself;
EPH 5:33, Nevertheless let each individual among you also love his own wife even as himself;
COL 3:19, Husbands, love your wives, and do not be embittered against them.
The heart contains all thought and standards while the emotion contains nothing. Koilia means the emotions = something that is empty, or hollow.
Emotion contains no doctrine, no thought, no common sense, and no ability to reason. PHI 3:18-19, For many keep walking, concerning whom I have warned you many times, and now continue to affirm, even weeping, the enemies of the cross of Christ, whose termination is destruction, whose god is their [koilia] emotion, and whose time of glory will be a momentary time of shame, who keep thinking about earthly things.
ROM 16:17-18, Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. For such men are slaves, not of our Lord Christ but of their own [koilia] appetites; and by their smooth and flattering speech they deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting.
Emotion is something empty and a part of you waiting to respond, not react.
If emotion controls the soul you cannot think or apply doctrine to life. By definition, the emotions are the appreciator of the soul and by function, the emotions respond to the right lobe. Emotion is not designed to assume authority over the soul, but is designed to be dominated by the right lobe. Emotion has no ability to love but rather emotional revolt produces all forms of adultery, fornication, immorality, homosexuals and lesbians.
Capacity for life is related to the right lobe, thought, not the emotions. While certain portions of the anatomy double for parts of the soul in the Bible, it is not difficult to distinguish the essence of the soul from the physiological anatomy of the body.
Kardia is the heart, as the physiological anatomy of the body it refers to the area of thoughts in the soul.
Anatomy in the languages of the ancient world always doubled for the functions of the soul, because they did not have in ancient languages a psychological vocabulary.
Only in the right lobe, the kardia, exists the frame of reference, memory center, viewpoint, norms and standards, and doctrine.
Emotions are stimuli for action, and therefore must be regarded as a form of human energy. Positive response to the heart produces the spectrum of happiness, from tranquility, inner peace, to ecstatics in the emotions.
Negative response to the heart produces the spectrum of misery: the back-up of mental attitude sins, revolt of the emotions, psychosis, instability of wide emotional swings, because the emotions take over control, become the aggressor, and dictate to the right lobe. When this happens, after awhile, the whole function of the soul is backed-up with mental attitude sins and emotions controlling every area of the soul: self-consciousness, mentality, volition, conscience. Since the emotions of the soul were never designed to dominate the soul, wide emotional swings demonstrate the inability of the emotions to dominate.
Emotional stress causes people to act on impulse. The emotion of fear (also a sin) causes flight. The emotion of disgust causes repulsion. The emotion of anger causes violence.
Instincts are reflex behavior based on emotion rather than on thought.
Emotion is a complex, biological, physiological process, or function concerned with somatic expression or feeling.
Two categorical functions of the emotions: the conscious sensations of the emotions of the soul, and the effects of emotions on the organic function of the body, especially the nervous system.
The prefrontal lobes, the cortical areas of the brain, are associated with thought, motives, and decisions.
Emotional activity can occur without the presence of thought. Emotion without thought is a tragic complication in life. When emotion functions without thought, that is abnormal emotional activity - emotional instability.
Normal functions of the emotion include pleasure or entertainment, excitement, appreciation.
The greatest enemy of Christianity is human good and emotion - the doctrine of pseudo spirituality.