This blog is all about Philippians 4:6-7 Meaning
Friend, let me officially welcome you to this post!😊
I’m excited to write about Philippians 4:6-7, a well-known scripture passage many people turn to when facing uncertain and anxious times.
I believe many Christians know these verses by heart and have them memorized! However, these verses are often underrated and overlooked for their true meaning!
These verses in Philippians are important because we live in a world where it is easy to let our worries and anxieties take control. It can be tough to find peace that truly surpasses all understanding; however, there is hope found in Philippians 4:6-7.
In this blog post, I will explore and explain the power of Philippians 4:6-7 and what it teaches us about relying on God for peace in our lives. I will delve into how we can apply Paul’s teachings to our own situations and find comfort and relief from stress and worry.
Together, we will discover the hope found in trusting God with all our worries, no matter how difficult our situation(s) may seem.
Ready? Let’s go
Why I’m writing this post (reader requested!)
A reader requested that I write this post and breakdown!
Since I really love this particular verse and it was one of the earliest verses I memorized, I decided to do a deep dive!
I had to re-read the book of Philippians, and it took me two and a half weeks to research, pray, and reflect on this post. Then it took a few days to write it!
Sending out a special shout-out to the reader who made this request- Jesus loves you! ❤️
Church of Philippi (context and background)
This section is so important! You need to understand the context of the letter to the Philippians and the Philippian church in order to understand Philippians 4:6-7.
Paul founded the church in Philippi during his missionary journey. After that, he received word from God about its people (Acts 16:6-40). It is recorded that he baptized converts in the nearby river while staying there. Lydia was among the first notable people to be baptized circa 49-50 A.D.!
Philippi was a thriving metropolis in ancient Greece, home to one of the earliest branches of Christianity. In world history, we are told it was an “important city” that “flourished.”
Why do I say all this? This indicates that since it was a very important and flourishing Roman colony, there was bound to be persecution because the widespread growth of Christianity threatened the Romans!
This is the persecution the church endured from the Romans:
- Soldiers were sent to arrest and imprison Christians
- Christians were beaten for their faith (Paul and Silas were beaten with rods in Philippi! (Read Acts 16:16-24)
- Some were martyred
- They were accused of doing wrong and forbidden from gathering in large groups (Read Acts 16:16-24)
- The government confiscated the property of believers, including homes and businesses (credit: Christian History Institute)
- They were fined and imprisoned for simply practicing their faith or preaching the gospel.
- Christianity was defined as a capital crime, and one could only be pardoned by apostasy, which is openly rejecting one’s faith. This could be done by sacrificing to pagan gods. (Credit- Brittanica)
So, from what I’ve just listed, think of the potential state of anxiety and worry they may have endured as a church in Philippi!
It’s important to remember that although the church of Philippi faced a difficult situation, their faith was unwavering amid persecution. They trusted in God, even when facing immense pressure from their oppressors.
While in prison, Paul wrote a letter to the Philippians to remind all believers that God is with us always and He never fails us in our moments of need. It’s a powerful example of faith that we can look back on for hope and guidance in our own lives.
Ponder🤔: Now think of Philippians 4:6-7 and picture yourself as a church member in Philippi. Picture the church gathering around as they open Paul’s letter. Part of the letter is Philippians 4:6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
I can feel the chills right now as I type that. I’m picturing the persecution of the Early Church and the depth of Apostle Paul’s words. “Do not be anxious about anything.”
Friends, the church of Philippi was an example that all believers could follow, and its history shows us how faith in God can give us strength. As we use Paul’s letter to the Philippians as a source of inspiration, let’s strive to be like the church of Philippi—united, determined, and faithful. And may we never forget the power of trusting in God, even in the most difficult times.
Philippians 4:6-7 meaning (Greek words)
First, hats off to Bible Hub, which has a beautiful breakdown of the Greek words!
Let’s explore two words that caught my eye and sent chills down my spine! Whoa!
The Greek root word used in the verse for “anxious” is merimnate, which is derived from two Greek words – merizo (“to divide”) and nous (“the mind”). Bible Hub emphasizes that it literally means “to be divided, distracted.”
Insight: This etymology speaks to the destructive power of anxiety and worry, which can divide our minds and distract us from God.
Friends think about it: worry or anxiety DIVIDES OUR MIND (sorry for the caps) and leads us away from God.
b) Let your requests be made known to God
Furthermore, Paul also instructs us to let our requests be made known to God. The Greek root word gnorizestho is derived from the Greek verb ‘gnorizo’, which means ‘make known, declare, know, discover”.
Insight: This etymology suggests that when we make known our requests, it implies a posture of dependence on the Lord for direction and assistance in life. When we take our worries or pleas before Him, we open ourselves up to His guidance and protection. This contrasts how many people live their lives – trying to control all aspects of life while only looking for help from God when nothing else works.
When we make our worries and needs known, it also implies recognizing His authority over us as our Creator and Redeemer. We humbly ask Him to intervene on our behalf, trusting in His goodness and faithfulness to answer our prayers according to His will. We also recognize that He knows better than we do what is best for us, and we rely upon His perfect wisdom in leading us down the path of life that He has ordained for us.
Philippians 4:6-7 Meaning (Pictorial breakdown and Exposition)
Let’s break down Philippians 4:6-7 to understand it better:
Verse 6: Command /Advice Against Anxiety
The Apostle Paul begins this passage with a command. In verse 6, he writes, “Do not be anxious about anything…” This call to action is followed by the conjunction “but,” which indicates a contrast between the two parts of the command.
Paul is not simply telling us to avoid fear or dread (which would capture only a small subset of anxious thoughts and feelings) but to reject the idea of worry or rumination.
4-Part Solution: Prayer, Supplication, Thanksgiving, and Requests
In order to replace anxiety with peace, Paul offers a four-part solution.
Let’s review them:
- Prayer involves talking with God, whether it be in silence or aloud.
- Supplication is a type of prayer that focuses explicitly on asking for something from God, such as forgiveness or healing. This is when one directly goes to God and asks for something. There is an element of specificity in supplication.
- The third part of this solution is thanksgiving. Paul encourages us to offer gratitude to God during our prayers, even when we are in need. This shifts the focus from our own issues to God’s mercies and goodness.
- The fourth part of Paul’s solution is requests. It is important to note that by using the term “requests” instead of “demands,” Paul teaches us to approach God with humility and trust.
Result OR Promise (Peace): Verse 7
The passage culminates with a promise in Verse 7. Paul writes, “and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
The flow from anxiety to peace is clear. Through prayer, supplication, giving thanks, and making requests, we give God our worries. In exchange, He offers us peace beyond comprehension that will guard us against further anxious thoughts.
This promise serves as the centerpiece of the passage and reminds us of the power of prayer in times of distress. It encourages us to lift our eyes from our own anxieties and turn them towards the peace of our Lord.
Guard your Mind (Helmet of Salvation)
As you can see already, the book of Philippians offers us some very valuable advice when it comes to guarding our minds.
As stated earlier, Philippians 4:6-7 reminds us prayer is essential! When we pray, God helps us filter out unhealthy or unproductive thoughts that may lead us down a destructive path.
By meditating on Philippians 4:6-7 and applying it to our daily lives, we can be sure that our minds are better guarded and that we have a firm foundation in the Spirit.
Now, I also want to discuss Ephesians 6, which is all about wearing the armor of God. In particular, I want to highlight equipping yourself for the spiritual battles ahead.
In Ephesians 6, we are told of the “helmet of salvation,” which is part of the armor. The full armor of God enables us to stand firm against spiritual opposition. As believers, we must always be aware that our battle is in the mind, where our thoughts and words come from.
By putting on the full armor of God (including the helmet of salvation), we can be sure that our minds are shielded from any unhelpful influences. We must remember to take time each day to pray in order to receive Kingdom guidance and allow God’s grace to flow into our hearts and minds.
Let us make a conscious effort to fill our hearts and minds with the truth of God’s word so we may be equipped for any spiritual battle.
P.S. I wrote a comprehensive post on the armor of God titled “The Complete Guide to Spiritual Warfare with the Armor of God!”
Meditating and focusing on the Word of God (Philippians 4:8)
Now let’s discuss the equally important verse- Philippians 4:8.
Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
This verse is like the icing on the cake 🧁🎂 because focusing our thoughts on the good helps us reframe/renew our mindset (Romans 12:2)! It also helps us stay motivated and passionate about our faith and purpose.
Let us make it a habit to consistently take time for prayer and reflection – moments of silent meditation can help renew our minds and focus on what is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, and commendable. As we commit ourselves to this practice, we can be sure our minds are better guarded.
Friends, let us strive to focus our thoughts on what is good and proper for the Kingdom of God so that we may live lives full of faith and courage.
Steps to apply Philippians 4:6-7
Here are 10 application steps:
1. Understand the passage and its meaning
To adequately apply Philippians 4:6-7, you need to understand what it means. As I’ve re-iterated throughout the post- it encourages us to keep our focus off of our anxieties, worries, and concerns. Instead, we are called to “not be anxious” and tell God about everything on our minds and hearts.
Here are some extra tips:
- Regularly read (or recite) Philippians 4:6-7 and apply it to the struggles you’re facing
- Read supplementary material as a deep dive to gain additional understanding, i.e., commentaries.
- Do a Bible study on the book of Philippians in order to gain deeper insight and revelation.
2. Pray with humility
We are encouraged to approach God with humility and prayer. We can ask Him for help in our situations while also acknowledging His power, strength, and sovereignty over all things.
As we pray, it is important to remember that He works all things together for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
- Lean not on your own understanding (Proverbs 3:5-6)
- Don’t be prideful but instead humble yourself before God
- Surrender the outcome to God, trusting in His plan for you.
In our prayers, we should bring our needs before the Lord. This could include requests related to physical needs, emotional issues, or spiritual struggles.
By doing this, we actively engage with God, allowing us to experience His peace that surpasses our understanding (Philippians 4:7).
- Express your needs and requests to God
- Lay them down at His feet, trusting that He knows best
- Invite Him into the situation by asking for guidance and clarity.
Making a habit of giving thanks to God brings us closer to Him and helps to remind us of all the good He has done.
As we thank Him for His blessings, it helps us to refocus our attention on the positive aspects of our lives.
- Make time each day to thank God for what you’re grateful for
- Ask the Holy Spirit to help you recognize areas in your life where you need to be thankful
- Offer up prayers of gratitude, no matter what circumstance you’re in
- Spend time each day reflecting on all that you have to be grateful for
- Write down moments or experiences that bring joy into your life
- Make a list of all the blessings you have right now and focus on these.
5. Presenting your requests (NOT DEMANDS)
When we ask God for something, it’s important to remember that He may not give us exactly what we want. We should come to Him with an open heart and mind, trusting He knows what is best for us. We should also remain open to His will, even when it may not be what we had initially imagined.
- Always present your requests humbly and respectfully
- Pray that God’s will be done in the situation
- Remain flexible and open to hearing from the Lord.
6. Rely on God’s promises for peace that surpasses all understanding
In Philippians 4:7, Paul reminds us that when we turn our worries and concerns over to the Lord, He will give us “peace that surpasses all understanding.” We can rely on God’s promises in His Word for assurance and comfort, trusting He will take care of us.
- Rejoice in the promise of God’s peace and protection
- Memorize Bible verses on promises about peace
- Speak out these promises when you feel overwhelmed or anxious about a situation.
7. Meditate on the passage and trust in God with all of your worries
When we find ourselves struggling with anxiety, it is important to meditate on the passages that encourage us to trust in the Lord. We can do this by reading Scripture, writing it down, or speaking it out loud. Doing this helps us to focus our attention on God and His goodness instead of our worries and concerns.
- Memorize Philippians 4:6-7
- Read other passages of Scripture related to worry and anxiety
- Speak out these verses each day, trusting in God with your worries.
8. Combat negative thoughts with the Word of God
We can fight against any lie or temptation that comes against us by using the power of God’s Word. When our minds become filled with negative thoughts, we can counter them by speaking out verses from the Bible that remind us of God’s truth and goodness.
- Write down Bible verses on index cards to carry with you
- Memorize Scripture related to worry and anxiety
- Speak out these verses when you feel tempted to give into fear or doubt.
- Replace Negative Thoughts With God’s Truth
9. Don’t ruminate; don’t focus on the issue but on what’s honorable (see Philippians 4:8)
When we find ourselves worrying about something, it is important to remember that God calls us to “think on whatever is true, noble, right and pure” (Philippians 4:8). We can combat worry by focusing our attention on what is good and honorable.
- Make a list of things that bring joy and peace to your heart
- Spend time each day meditating on these thoughts or items
- Speak out verses from Philippians 4:8 when worrying thoughts start to creep in
- Take a break from the worry by getting out into nature and appreciating God’s creation
- Focus on activities that bring calmness, such as journaling or taking a walk
- Practice deep breathing exercises to help you remain in the present moment.
10. Combat negative thoughts with Scripture-based affirmations
A powerful way to combat worry and anxiety is by speaking out positive, Scripture-based affirmations. These can be any phrase or verse that encourages us to trust in the Lord, such as “the Lord is my strength and my shield” (Psalm 28:7). Whenever negative thoughts come to mind, try speaking out these affirmations as a reminder of God’s goodness and power.
- Create a list of Scripture-based affirmations
- Speak out these phrases each day or when anxious thoughts come to mind
- Ask friends or family to join you in speaking out these affirmations
- Write down your favorite affirmations on index cards to carry with you.
Combining Biblical and clinical truths to combat anxiousness
Since I have a background in Clinical Behavioral Health, I love to always touch on this topic because I firmly believe in Biblical truths and Clinical methods.
This is what I mean- we can also use clinical methods to address our anxiety, such as
- Recognizing negative thinking patterns and replacing them with more positive ones
- Spending time in nature
- Journaling about our feelings and experiences
- Engaging in activities that bring us joy
- Expressing gratitude.
Then, we can pair it with Spiritual or Biblical truths like meditating on God’s Word, prayer, etc.
In my book Made of Still, I discussed this a lot! I believe in taking concrete steps to address anxiety and find peace. I hope to expand on this because I have a burden and unction to create free material to address this!
Application (Reflection homework)
- Take some time today to reflect on the passage from Philippians 4:6-7.
- Consider how it applies to your life and consciously focus on prayer, supplication, thanksgiving, and requests instead of worrying.
- Pray for God’s peace to fill your heart and mind.
- Take practical steps to move away from worry and fear and embrace faith and trust in God.
- Remember His faithfulness, His love and mercy towards us, and the promise of peace that surpasses all understanding.
- And finally, surrender your worries to Him today!
Heavenly Father, we thank You for Your faithfulness and Your promise of peace that surpasses all understanding. We come before You with our worries and fears, humbly asking for Your help and guidance in managing them. Help us to trust in You and turn our worries into prayers. May we experience Your peace as we abide in You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
And that’s it, folks, the meaning of Philippians 4:6-7 Meaning
I hope you enjoyed this blog post!
Per what I’ve discussed, Philippians 4:6-7 provides us with a roadmap for dealing with worry and fear. The command to not be anxious is followed by a four-part solution of prayer, supplication, thanksgiving, and requests (not demands).
If we practice these 4 part steps, we can expect to experience true peace that surpasses all understanding. In times of difficulty and distress, let us turn our worries into prayers and trust God’s faithfulness and promises of peace.
No matter what circumstances the world throws at us – physical pain, financial problems, worries about the future – there is hope in God. Yep, God is always here for us, no matter the circumstances. Let us draw strength and comfort from His Word and trust Him through every situation. We can be sure that He will not let us down.
Never forget that stepping into God’s peace is possible!❤️