The Success of Philippians 4:13
I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
One of the most misquoted and misunderstood verses is Philippians 4:13. Certainly, this verse carries much weight for the ability of the believer to accomplish things for Christ. However, without a proper understanding of what this verse teaches, you will find yourself failing as you attempt things for Christ. I don't know about you, but I want to succeed as I do things for Christ. Let me share several things this verse does and does not say so that we can come to the solution to what makes the recipe of this verse work.
First, God is saying that I can do all things. God gives the believer a free will to do all things. Many consider this verse as an open-ended challenge to attempt all things for Christ. Certainly, you have the choice to do all things.
Second, God is not saying that I should do all things. Just because I can do all things does not mean that I should attempt all things. There are some things that are not for me to do; therefore, I should not attempt to do the things that Christ would not have me do. If I attempt things without Christ, I am guaranteeing myself failure.
Third, God is not saying that I can do all things. We look at this verse as if we have the capability to do all things, which is not true. God never one time in this verse says that I have the ability to do all things. Certainly, this verse says I can do all things, but to stop at that phrase is to guarantee failure.
Fourth, God is saying I can do all things through Christ. It is the “through Christ” that helps me to do all things. So, if I try to do all things through my own power, I will fail. However, if I try to do all things through Christ’s power, I will succeed. It is the doing all things through Christ that makes the difference between success and failure.
Fifth, God is not saying “I can” can do all things. Just because you believe you can does not mean that you can. Believing that you can do all things is necessary to doing all things, but believing alone will not make you successful.
Sixth, God is saying that “I can” can do all things through Christ. The believing that you can do something, but doing it through Christ is what makes the “I can” powerful. “I can” is an “I can’t” without Christ, but “I can” through Christ is what guarantees you can do all things. Taking Christ out turns the “I can” into an “I can’t.”
Seventh, God is not saying that I have the strength to do all things. The fact is, you don't have the strength to do all things. Too many get themselves involved in things that they believe they should do, but they fail and quit because they do it in their power.
Eighth, God is saying that it is only through Christ that I will have the strength to do all things. It is not doing all things through your own power that will make you successful, but it is doing things through Christ’s power that gives you the strength to do all things. Attempting anything without Christ’s power will guarantee you will have a power shortage at some point.
My friend, it all starts with me recognizing my weakness and Christ’s ability to work through me. It is when you realize you need Christ and work through His power that Philippians 4:13 can be claimed and be successful in your life.