Paul exhorts, “Work out your salvation” (Phi 2:12). Notice that he speaks to you as “saints in Christ Jesus” (Phi 1:1). He speaks to you as Christians, individuals who are saved. You trust Christ whom God sent into the world. Paul speaks about Him in verse 8-11.
Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
By trusting Jesus Christ, you experience salvation. Paul now says, “Work out your salvation.” That is, work out the implications of your salvation in your personal life, your family life, your church life, your work life, your school life. Your example is Jesus Christ. “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil 2:5). Seek to have the disposition, bent of mind, and inclinations of Christ. This is not impossible. Why? “It is God who is at work in you” (Phi 2:13). God does not give you an impossible command. He is working in you. The wonder of the new birth, of regeneration, is that God himself has entered your life by the power of His Spirit to change your attitudes and inclinations. Before your new birth, others exclaimed, “Whew, you have an attitude!” Now your attitude toward life and others is completely different.
God’s work, however, does not just change your bent of heart and mind. God enables you to carry out your new desires. “It is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Phi 2:13). Notice that God gives you a new standard by which to live, “His good pleasure.” He inclines your heart and makes you willing to please Him. What please God is loving Him and loving your neighbor. These are the great commandments (Mat 22:36-40). Christ says, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments” (Joh 14:15). As a result, you have new desires to love God and your neighbor. God works in you not only to change your bent of heart, He enables you to carry out these new desires. He enables you both to will and to work in behalf of His pleasure.
Christ is your example here too. Notice how Paul connects attitude and action. It is no different for you and me.
Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and … He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross (Phi 2:5-8).
Following your Savior and example, God enables willing action to please Him. To show you this is the case, Paul challenges you to enabled willing action. “Do all things without grumbling or disputing” (Phi 2:14). What a challenge! Why should you take it up? “So that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God” (Phi 2:15). Yes, God enables you to live a contented grumble free life. God is at work in you. Believe it! Do it!