In Philippians 4:6-7, we read, “And you must at no point be anxious about anything, but your requests must quickly be made known to Yehovah in every prayer and request, with thanksgiving. And the peace of Yehovah, which surpasses all understanding, will keep your hearts and your thoughts and purposes on Messiah Yeshua.”
What is Paul trying to tell us here in this verse?
He starts by saying, “and you must at no point be anxious about anything.” This tells us the reason why we must not be anxious is found in verses 4-5. In verses 4-5, we read, “You must continually rejoice in the Lord always: again I say rejoice!. Your gentleness must always be known to all people. The Lord is near.” So the reason why we should never be anxious is that we should rejoice in the Lord. But what does that mean? How do we rejoice in the Lord?
When Paul wrote Philippians, there would be another 400 years until there existed a New Testament. Pauls Bible was the Old Testament, so for us to understand what he meant, we have to read his Bible and see if there is anywhere it tells us to rejoice in the Lord. When Paul tells us to rejoice in the Lord, he is referencing the Old Testament in Psalm 33:1 and Habakkukk 3:18. So if we want to understand Paul in Philippians, we first have to understand what it means to rejoice in the Lord according to Psalm 33:1 and Habakkukk 3:18.
The one who is rejoicing in both Psalm 33:1 and Habakkuk 3:18 are the righteous of Yehovah. How did you become righteous in the Old Testament? The same way as you do in the New Testament, you commit to doing acts of righteousness because the one doing righteousness is righteous, says John the Apostle in 1.John. What is righteousness? According to both the Old and the New, righteous acts are obedience to Moses’ written law. So in both the Old and the New, you become righteous if you obey the Torah (the written law of Moses), and those who do follow the Torah have good reason to rejoice in Yehovah.
They know they can trust Yehovah as their God; He hears them because Yehovah hears the prayers of the righteous, and Yehovah will come through for them. So the guarantee for Yehovah’s help is Torah obedience. This is a good reason to rejoice, dont you think so?
This is what we also see in 1. John 2:6, where it says those who claim to be one with Jesus must obey the Torah as He obeyed the Torah. Rejoicing in Jesus is the same as rejoicing in the Torah, knowing that you are guaranteed Yehovahs help because you keep the Torah.
So what Paul is trying to tell us in Philippians is this:
If we obey the Torah (the written law of Moses), we know we are righteous. If we are righteous, we know Yehovah hears us when we pray. If we know He hears us when we pray; we know He will deliver us and see to our every need. So our Torah obedience guarantees Yehovahs help and answered prayer. So when we have a need, we must tell Yehovah what we need and thank Him in advance for answering our prayer (Mark 11:24). Then we will have no reason to worry about anything, and while we wait for the answer to manifest, Yehovah promises to give us peace as long as we stay Torah obedient.
But Paul warns us not to be anxious about anything. Why? Because when we are anxious, we dont believe Yehovah can and will do what He said He would do. It was anxiety and worrying that caused the Israelites in the desert to build a golden calf instead of waiting for Moses to come down from the Mountain. It was anxiety and worrying that caused Abraham to take matters into his own hands instead of waiting for Isaac to be born. All these examples in the Bible are there to warn us not to be anxious.
So how do you avoid being anxious early Monday morning when your circumstances give you good reason to worry?
It is a choice you have to make, choose not to fear, and decide not to worry despite your circumstances. How do you make that choice? By choosing to believe you are righteous because you obey the law of Moses. And because you are righteous, Yehovah has promised to meet your needs, whatever they might be. So you are healed, prospered, delivered, cared for, protected right now because you obey Torah. You might not see it manifested right away, but Philippians 4 promises you that if you walk through life with an attitude of “I am healed, cared for, prospered, guided, and all my needs are met because I keep Torah, then it will happen when the time is right.”
One part of keeping the Torah is meditating on the Torah at all times. (Joshua 1, Psalm 1) The Torah has 613 commandments, so it is impossible to meditate on all of them while living hectic everyday lives. But we are all able to meditate on the core of the Torah. The essence of the Torah is love for Yehovah, and just as Jesus says in John 14, we show our love for our God by obeying the Torah. So, to put it another way, the Torah is Yehovah’s and Yeshua’s love language. When loving Yehovah becomes second nature to you, you dont have to meditate on the 613 commandments because now you know all the Torah by heart. Now you only need to meditate on the fact that you love Yehovah and He loves you. Then you are fulfilling the commandment to keep the Torah at the forefront of your mind at all times.
So a part of not being anxious and keeping Torah in Philippians 4 depends on you learning Yehovah’s love language. When you know how to love Him, you know He loves you, and then it becomes straightforward to rejoice in the Lord even amid the most challenging circumstances and easy to trust that He will intervene in the darkest of days because He loves you and you love Him.