Part 10 The “Dwell” Verse – Philippians 4:8

I figured starting with the central verse makes sense.  Have you ever heard of how to identify a counterfeit?  Study and know the real one, the standard.  Don’t study the fakes, study the real thing so well the fakes will be obvious.

So I strongly encourage you to, pause, reading this post to read Philippians 4:1-9.

You are back.  But did you read the passage?  Really, please stop and ready the passage if you didn’t, it is way more important than this post.

What an amazing list of encouragements.  Maybe in future posts I will take on each phrase starting from verse one, one-by-one.  Back to verse 8 for now.

Ok, so this will have to be a few posts.  My guess is it needs to be the next eight or more.  The alternative is to put up with a very long post.  There are eight concepts Paul challenges us to dwell upon.  One phrase or vague summary will not do justice to these concepts.

There are too many questions to answer in one post.  What is truth?  What does honorable really mean?  “Just” what?  (Attempt at a joke.)  Is there anything truly pure?  How is lovely different than beautiful?  Is that recommendable or commendable?  Is this a rhetorical question about moral excellence?  “Any praise – huh?

We can’t dwell on things we don’t understand.  In the last few years I have learned there is a big difference between recognizing something and being able to define it well.  I believe few reading this post would say they have no idea what is true.  But what is true?  How would you explain it to someone who believes truth is relative?  What did Paul mean by what is true?  What is the root meaning of the word in the original language?

I hope you are just as excited as am I to be digging deeply into each amazing detail of how we are to dwell, focus our attention.  Jeremiah 29:13, Matthew 7:7, and John 8:32 come to mind as we continue this journey.

By the way; 1. I am just taking this one post at a time as you can tell, 2. I will be doing most of my Bible study with the Holman Christians Standard Version, but not limited to this version, and as much as possible the original Greek, 3. I am not a Greek scholar to say the least.

Heavenly Father, how am I “dwelling” today?

Dwell, Part 9 – synonyms, part 1

“Or 3. There are other words used to describe the same idea, i.e. synonyms for the word dwell.”

Why isn’t the word “dwell” used more often to describe the focus of our attention?  This is the general question I have been exploring the last few weeks.  The most likely answer is that there are many other words or phrases used in the Bible to teach us about our focus.

Here are some dictionary synonyms for the word “dwell”: linger over, mull over, muse on, brood about, brood over, think about, spend time thinking about, be preoccupied by, be obsessed by, eat one’s heart out over; harp on about, discuss at length, expatiate on, elaborate on, expound on, keep talking about.  (thanks Google for the list)

This list is a good starting point, but it is going to take a while for me to search for these words and phrases in the Bible.  Actually, I intend to focus this search on the New Testament.

So the next post will begin a series of passages I find that deal with how we focus our attention – well, and poorly.

How am I “dwelling”?  (Yes, this is still a self-diagnostic question.)

“2. The topic is so clear no more passages are needed.”

A month ago yesterday I posted the following – “So only Philippians 4:8-9 has the word dwell used with the meaning we are looking to study.  This is interesting.  I think we only have a few main reasons why we don’t see dwelling in more passage.  1. What we focus our attention on is not that important. Or 2. The topic is so clear no more passages are needed.  Or 3. There are other words used to describe the same idea, i.e. synonyms for the word dwell.”

The last post expanded on option #1.  (Yea, read it if you haven’t yet please.)

Most likely I am overly complicating this topic.  I tend to overcomplicate nearly everything, but wait a moment.  There is a difference between knowing and doing.  Here is the reason I am exploring the idea in the first place.

I doubt it is any surprise that what I focus upon captures my attention.  Practically speaking, the Bible probably also does not frequently address this truth because it is pretty obvious.  But I don’t believe this is the reason this specific word, dwell, is not used often to teach about our focus of attention.

I believe the real reason Philippians 4:8-9 is the only passage using dwell in this way is because there are other ways to describe this specific idea.  So, onto a series of posts with different passages also teaching about how we are to focus our attention, but using different words.

How am I “dwelling”?  (Yes, this is a self-diagnostic question for you.)