top of page


Apostle Paul made an interesting comment which we are going to consider the real meaning today and why he made the comment. Unless we are willing to study the circumstance surrounding this utterance, we may never fully understand the meaning and receive the full empowerment of the virtue it communicates.

Reference: Philippians 4:12-13 King James Version (KJV) "I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

I know that many Christians often quote this very Scripture for good - "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me", but I included the verse before it today, so that we can understand the reason Paul said it and the circumstance that formed the setting. By that way, his mind at that point in time will be fully understood. Although this is a remarkable verse because for many Christians, it highlights the power of Christ strengthening them to accomplish what is impossible in natural terms, supernatural empowerment does not mean we can do all things or accomplish just any task, whether good or evil.

Here is a little summary of the story: Paul rejoiced in the Lord greatly, and thanked the Philippian Christians for their financial gifts and supply delivered to him by Epaphroditus. Paul was served by Epaphroditus on many occasions and also he helped Paul in delivering his letters to the Philippians. Having appreciated the Philippians' generosity, he thanked them and added, "Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need" (see Philippians 4:10-12).

For this reason, Paul concluded that He could do all those things through Christ which strengthened him. Then he commended them saying, "Notwithstanding ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction" (verse 14). Considering the context, Paul was speaking in terms of how he could abound, and be content in any situation he found himself. Therefore, every where and in all things, he could adapt to both being full and being hungry, to enjoy plenty and to suffer need. Simply put, Paul could acclimatize to any change in conditions and live through all things he encountered. And that's the true meaning of "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." He also mentioned that Christ empowered him to endure and to abound, whether in hardship or in abundance.

Although Paul's quote has always been taken out of context, his utterance signified his ability to endure hardship and every other condition, whether favourable or unfavourable. Therefore, having considered the real context, it is wrong to accept the idea that we are strengthened by Christ to accomplish anything. If that is the case, it can also mean that we can do all evil, because Paul said "all things". Beloved, we can overcome anything we encounter and live above negative circumstances through Christ who empowers us to do so, but we must be determined to make purposeful decision to be content and win. Shalom!

Scripture Reading - Matthew 19:26; Romans 5:3-4; 2 Corinthians 4:16-18; Hebrews 12:1; James 1:2-4.

Guided Prayer: God of all grace, I'm daily strengthened with all power according to your glorious might such that I persevere in all things, having enough energy and experiencing more than enough in any circumstance. As I grow in the knowledge of the Word, I bear fruit in every good work and excel beyond the average, all because of Christ that strengthens me. Thank you Father for the strength and enablement to always endure and accomplish the needful in my world, in Jesus' Name, Amen!


bottom of page