“…work out your salvation…”
Philippians 2:12, NAS
Years ago I was working with wood and a large splinter lodged under my fingernail. I could not get it out and after several days it got so infected that two things needed to take place. I needed to swallow an antibiotic and the splinter needed to be removed. The antibiotic worked from the inside to kill the infection. But next I needed to work on the outside to pull out the splinter.
Philippians 2:13 says, “for it is God who is at work in you…” When salvation takes place, God comes to live in you. Christ crucified cures the infection of your sin. Then the Holy Spirit takes up residence in your life. But you still have to work the healing salvation from the inside to the outside of your life.
Even after salvation, there are areas of your life that will battle for control. There are areas such as the way you handle your marriage that you still have to work Christ into. There are still attitudes, habits, addictions, and desires under your skin that need to be dealt with. You received the antibiotic for your sin, but you still have the responsibility to pull out the splinters.
You have to be willing to do whatever it takes to dig them out no matter how imbedded they are. Then you must choose to stay away from the kind of “lumber” that gave you those splinters in the first place.
You play a part in working your salvation out from your heart to your daily actions. You could not possibly have conquered some of these areas before, without Christ working in you, because “He who is in you is greater than He who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4, NKJV) Now you can work out your salvation so as to impact every area of your life.
QUESTION: In your own life, is there a splinter that needs to be worked out and taken over by Christ?