(NKJV) Philippians 2:12 “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye 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.”
(CEV) Philippians 2:12 “My dear friends, you always obeyed when I was with you. Now that I am away, you should obey even more. So, work with fear and trembling to discover what it really means to be saved.”
First off, salvation isn’t something you have to work for; it is a free gift from God that is received by Faith. You don’t work for salvation: It works for you. Working out our salvation is very different from working for our salvation. It doesn’t mean you get your Salvation through works, but you get your Salvation by Grace. ‘Working out your own salvation.’ pertains to personal conduct, to Faithful, obedient daily living. Although God is Loving, Merciful, and Forgiving, He nevertheless Holds believers accountable for disobedience. WE work out OUR salvation collectively, by being of one mind and humbly submitting to one another. So, to “work out” your salvation means to keep on working out to completion or ultimate fulfillment.
Philippians 2:12 is about working out the desire and power we have because of our salvation to do good works. In other words, when Paul tells believers they need to work out their salvation, he is simply explaining that the wonderful gift they freely received from God is inside of them. We bring out those beautiful attributes and character traits by Faith. Faith is a rest, but it is Faith that Works, not us. So, working out what is on the inside of us happens by Faith. Notice that Paul emphasizes this point in the very next verse. “For it is God which worketh IN YOU both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” Philippians 2:13
The Bible says, ‘Work out your own salvation…for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for his good pleasure’ (Philippians 2:12-13 NKJV). This Scripture almost sounds like a contradiction, doesn’t it? But instead, it is a paradox. And G.K. Chesterton described a paradox as ‘truth standing on its head to get attention’. The key to understanding this particular paradox lies in the little word OUT. Notice that the Bible doesn’t say, ‘Work for your salvation.’ To work for something means to earn it, deserve it, merit it. And the Bible plainly Teaches that Salvation isn’t something we have to work for or earn. It’s a free gift of God’s Grace (see Ephesians 2:8-9).
Phi 2: 12 – We have to be responsible; ‘…work out your own salvation…’ don’t let people be on your back ie. Put pressure on you before you to go to Church because you are to; ‘…work out your own salvation…’
Phil 2:12 (…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling) – cooperate with The Holy Spirit to complete your salvation , v13 (For it is God which worketh in you… his good pleasure.– God is Working in me
Prov 17; 8 – God Gives you a gift – He Hides it inside you but as you work it out it grows, that’s why what is in you is bigger them what’s outside
When Paul says, ‘Work out your salvation,’ he is talking about a ‘spiritual workout’. What do you do during a physical workout? You develop and tone the muscles God has already provided you. To ‘work out’ means to grow and make the most of what you have been given. What Paul is saying here is this: develop your spiritual life! God has a part in our spiritual growth, and we, too, have a part. He Provides the power, but we must access it, flip the switch, and let it flow through our lives to fulfil His Will for us.
Practically speaking, how do we do that? By spending time praying and reading God’s Word each day. By listening and obeying the Holy Spirit. By sharpening and strengthening one another through fellowship. By exercising the gifts God has Given us. The fact is, he has already Done His part; now it’s up to you to do yours
When Apostle Paul mentions “fear and trembling.” He isn’t talking about being afraid of God. God is our Daddy and He Deserves a reverential (respectful) fear. Rather, he is helping the new believer to know that in the beginning, it will seem scary to walk by Faith. However, it is the only way to see our inner Salvation manifest on the outside through our character.