Riverside Community Church

Philippians Part 2 - Abounding Love

Philippians 1: 9-11


The Apostle Paul tells the Philippi church, ‘I’m praying for you’ and then then he tells them what exactly he is praying for them. I often tell people I’m praying for you and sometimes I tell them what my specific prayer for them is. If I ever say to you, ‘I’m praying for you’ and you want to know what I am praying, go ahead and ask me. My prayers for you are based on what I perceive are your greatest needs and difficulties and on your greatest spiritual strengths. I ask that you pray for me and pray for each other faithfully.

  • Praying for each other is one of ties that binds us together,

  • Praying for each other is so unselfish that’s it’s beautiful, it helps to build each other up, it’s comforting to our hearts and reassuring to our souls à so pray and pray and pray.

Paul’s affectionate and brief prayer is made in Phil. 1:9 - church at Philippi & by inference because it’s in the Bible to Riverside Church - and ultimately, God’s Word is to you.

9 And this I pray, that your love may abound more and more …


I once attended an inter-denominational church conference and after the first speaker concluded, we broke for lunch at the conference Centre. I had lunch with an Anglican deacon, and we spoke concerning the Bible text the speaker had been talking about.

I told this man my thoughts and told him how that scripture applied to my life. I can still his puzzled face when he said, ‘do you take the Bible personally’? (Meaning -does the Bible speak to you, do you believe it was written to you?)

My reply was ‘Oh, yes, it is for me personally and it’s for you too.’ His eyes grew big and lit up as if he had the biggest discovery in his life. He had epiphany concerning the Bible, his eyes and heart opened up.


Q Have you had this discovery yet? That the Word of God is for you, seriously for you and personally for you.

Paul writes:

9 And this I pray, that your love may abound more and more

The Triangle of Love





Me                   Others


God loves me

God loves others

Me love others

Others love me               - that’s the Church’s Modus Operandi.

-the word in Greek used here for love is agape -To love like God -agape love is the highest form of love one can have.

-God’s love for me and for you is so deep, so breathtaking, so grand, so rich, that it holds me, and holds me fast. I’m not perfect but still God loves me perfectly.

-here’s the crazy part of Paul’s prayer for the church at Philippi and ultimately us, you and I:

-that our love would abound

-abound is like a cup overflowing or a river overflowing it’s banks.

a·bound means to

exist in large numbers or amounts.

be plentiful     be abundant    be numerous    proliferate      thrive


Like putting mentos in a bottle of coke.

It gets crazier –“MORE AND MORE”.

9 And this I pray, that your love may abound more and more

-over the top love for God and over the top love for others in the church

-this describes God’s wonderful love for you, -over the top, abounding, more and more, unending, unfathomable, rich, deep, complete.


God even describes His own love as abounding when He came down and appeared to Moses in one of the most resplendent scenes in scripture:

Exodus 34:6

And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness,

-Moses declared:

Numbers 14:18

‘The Lord is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion.


-Nehemiah asserted:

Nehemiah 9:17

… But you are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love.


David proclaimed:

Psalm 86:15

But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.


Psalm 103:8

The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding (KJV plenteous – rab(Heb.) -abundant in love.


Even depressed Jonah who was so mad at God for being so ‘abounding in Love’ that he complained about it in Jonah 4:2.

He prayed to the Lord, “Isn’t this what I said, Lord, when I was still at home? That is what I tried to forestall by fleeing to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity.


God is abounding in love to you and God wants you to abound in love to Him and to others. (look around at all the loveable people here)

‘By this all will know that you are my disciples, Jesus said, if you LOVE one another’ love one another with this God like love, agape. With this noble and unselfish love towards each other is our calling.

-when you meet each other next think I agape love you. Pure and vibrant affection for each other. Start this right now, determine to love each other.

Paul’s prayer uses exaggeration, hyperbole, to make this love point by saying ‘abound more and more’ – not just overflow with love but overflow more and then double overflow more. Just like God is overflowing with love to us, we are to overflow with love to other believers.

        -now look around at all the loveable people here.

And this is my prayer:

that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.

Love is more than sentiment but also knowledgeable & discerning

-having genuine depth of knowledge of God and depth of insight into His ways is like saying, the more you come to know God and His ways the more you love Him

        à this knowledge and understanding of God is what enables Christians to abound in love for God and for others. Get to know God deeply, you’ll love Him more and more and your love for your brothers and sisters will grow, will abound.

God is abounding towards us and wants us to be abounding people.


2 Corinthians 9:8 King James Version

8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:


We are to:

Abound in Hope. Romans 15:13

Abound in Suffering. 2 Corinthians 1:5

Abound in Faith. 2 Corinthians 8:7

Abound in every Good Work. 2 Corinthians 9:8

Abound in our Walk. 1 Thessalonians 4:1

Abound in Grace. 2 Peter 1:8


And from Paul’s prayer we are to: Abound in Love. Philippians 1:9

Choose to love, determine to love everyone here and others that will come, lets be the church that loves each other.

Now look around at all the people here and say in your heart I agape you.

Riverside, Sept. 10, 2023