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Philippians 4:6

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Be careful for nothing - Μηδεν μεριμνατε· Be not anxiously solicitous; do not give place to carking care, let what will occur; for anxiety cannot chance the state or condition of any thing from bad to good, but will infallibly injure your own souls.

By prayer and supplication - God alone can help you; he is disposed to do it, but you must ask by prayer and supplication; without this he has not promised to help you.

By prayer - solemn application to God from a sense of want.

Supplication - continuance in earnest prayer. With thanksgiving, for innumerable favors already received; and for dangers, evils, and deaths turned aside. And let your souls be found in this exercise, or in the disposition in which this exercise can be performed, at all times, on all occasions, and in all places.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Be careful for nothing - That is, be not anxious or solicitous about the things of the present life. The word used here - μεριμνᾶτε merimnate- does not mean that we are to exercise no care about worldly matters - no care to preserve our property, or to provide for our families (compare 1 Timothy 5:8); but that there is to be such confidence in God as to free the mind from anxiety, and such a sense of dependence on him as to keep it calm; see the subject explained in the notes on Matthew 6:25.

But in everything - Everything in reference to the supply of your wants, and the wants of your families; everything in respect to afflictions, embarrassments, and trials; and everything relating to your spiritual condition. There is nothing which pertains to body, mind, estate, friends, conflicts, losses, trials, hopes, fears, in reference to which we may not go and spread it all out before the Lord.

By prayer and supplication - The word rendered “supplication” is a stronger term than the former. It is the mode of prayer which especially arises from the sense of “need,” or “want” - from δέομαι deomai“to want, to need.”

With thanksgiving - Thanksgiving connected with prayer. We can always find something to be thankful for, no matter what may be the burden of our wants, or the special subject of our petitions. When we pray for the supply of our wants, we may be thankful for that kind providence which has hitherto befriended us; when we pray for restoration from sickness, we may be thankful for the health we have hitherto enjoyed, and for God‘s merciful interposition in the former days of trial, and for his goodness in now sparing our lives; when we pray that our children and friends may be preserved from danger and death, we may remember how often God has interposed to save them; when, oppressed with a sense of sin, we pray for pardon, we have abundant cause of thanksgiving that there is a glorious way by which we may be saved. The greatest sufferer that lives in this world of redeeming love, and who has the offer of heaven before him, has cause of gratitude.

Let your request be made known unto God - Not as if you were to give him information, but to express to him your wants. God needs not to be informed of our necessities, but he requires that we come and express them to him; compare Ezekiel 36:37. “Thus saith the Lord God, I will yet for this be inquired of by the house of Israel to do it for them.”

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Let believers be of one mind, and ready to help each other. As the apostle had found the benefit of their assistance, he knew how comfortable it would be to his fellow-labourers to have the help of others. Let us seek to give assurance that our names are written in the book of life. Joy in God is of great consequence in the Christian life; and Christians need to be again and again called to it. It more than outweighs all causes for sorrow. Let their enemies perceive how moderate they were as to outward things, and how composedly they suffered loss and hardships. The day of judgment will soon arrive, with full redemption to believers, and destruction to ungodly men. There is a care of diligence which is our duty, and agrees with a wise forecast and due concern; but there is a care of fear and distrust, which is sin and folly, and only perplexes and distracts the mind. As a remedy against perplexing care, constant prayer is recommended. Not only stated times for prayer, but in every thing by prayer. We must join thanksgivings with prayers and supplications; not only seek supplies of good, but own the mercies we have received. God needs not to be told our wants or desires; he knows them better than we do; but he will have us show that we value the mercy, and feel our dependence on him. The peace of God, the comfortable sense of being reconciled to God, and having a part in his favour, and the hope of the heavenly blessedness, are a greater good than can be fully expressed. This peace will keep our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus; it will keep us from sinning under troubles, and from sinking under them; keep us calm and with inward satisfaction. Believers are to get and to keep a good name; a name for good things with God and good men. We should walk in all the ways of virtue, and abide therein; then, whether our praise is of men or not, it will be of God. The apostle is for an example. His doctrine and life agreed together. The way to have the God of peace with us, is to keep close to our duty. All our privileges and salvation arise in the free mercy of God; yet the enjoyment of them depends on our sincere and holy conduct. These are works of God, pertaining to God, and to him only are they to be ascribed, and to no other, neither men, words, nor deeds.
Ellen G. White
Our High Calling, 326.1

Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.... Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Philippians 4:4-6. OHC 326.1

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Ellen G. White
That I May Know Him, 212.3

Drink deep at the fountain of truth, and be a close student of the Word, for the Lord will take the words of truth and through the Holy Spirit imprint them on your heart that you may present the precious Word with simplicity and fervor. “Rejoice in the Lord alway: ...” that Jesus is glad to receive you with all your imperfections, with all your weakness, and acknowledge you as His child. Therefore, trust Him. Adorn the doctrine of Christ our Saviour by a well-ordered life and a godly conversation. “Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing”—that is, be not overanxious—“but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” What a privilege is this given to every one to trust in Jesus and tell Him everything! “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:4-7). TMK 212.3

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Ellen G. White
This Day With God, 156.5

I spoke in the Rechabite's hall at 3:00 P.M. from Philippians 4:4-7: “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” I believe the promise is for me, and I appropriate the same personally. The promise itself is of no value unless I fully believe that He that has made the promise is abundantly able to fulfill, and infinite in power to do all that He has said. TDG 156.5

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Ellen G. White
The Acts of the Apostles, 484

The great purpose that constrained Paul to press forward in the face of hardship and difficulty should lead every Christian worker to consecrate himself wholly to God's service. Worldly attractions will be presented to draw his attentions from the Saviour, but he is to press on toward the goal, showing to the world, to angels, and to men that the hope of seeing the face of God is worth all the effort and sacrifice that the attainment of this hope demands. AA 484.1

Though he was a prisoner, Paul was not discouraged. Instead, a note of triumph rings through the letters that he wrote from Rome to the churches. “Rejoice in the Lord alway,” he wrote to the Philippians, “and again I say, Rejoice.... Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” AA 484.2

“My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.... The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.” AA 484.3

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Ellen G. White
Counsels on Health, 630

Said the apostle Paul to his Philippian brethren, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Adopt this as the rule of life. “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:8, 6, 7. CH 630.1

The work of educating in medical missionary lines is an advance step of great importance in awakening man to his moral responsibilities. Had the ministers taken hold of this work in its various departments in accordance with the light which God has given, there would have been a most decided reformation in eating, drinking, and dressing. But some have stood directly in the way of the advance of health reform. They have held the people back by their indifferent or condemnatory remarks, or by pleasantries and jokes. They themselves and a large number of others have been sufferers unto death, but all have not yet learned wisdom.—Testimonies for the Church 6:377 (1900). CH 630.2

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Ellen G. White
In Heavenly Places, 90.5

Jesus prayed to the Father with strong crying and tears. Paul exhorts believers to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). “In every thing, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God” (Philippians 4:6).... God has a right to command our devotions; His authority is sacred and unquestionable. We are under obligation to pray because He requires it; and in obeying His requirements we shall receive a gracious and precious reward.... HP 90.5

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Ellen G. White
Steps to Christ, 97

When we come to ask mercy and blessing from God we should have a spirit of love and forgiveness in our own hearts. How can we pray, “Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors,” and yet indulge an unforgiving spirit? Matthew 6:12. If we expect our own prayers to be heard we must forgive others in the same manner and to the same extent as we hope to be forgiven. SC 97.1

Perseverance in prayer has been made a condition of receiving. We must pray always if we would grow in faith and experience. We are to be “instant in prayer,” to “continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving.” Romans 12:12; Colossians 4:2. Peter exhorts believers to be “sober, and watch unto prayer.” 1 Peter 4:7. Paul directs, “In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” Philippians 4:6. “But ye, beloved,” says Jude, “praying in the Holy Ghost, keep yourselves in the love of God.” Jude 20, 21. Unceasing prayer is the unbroken union of the soul with God, so that life from God flows into our life; and from our life, purity and holiness flow back to God. SC 97.2

There is necessity for diligence in prayer; let nothing hinder you. Make every effort to keep open the communion between Jesus and your own soul. Seek every opportunity to go where prayer is wont to be made. Those who are really seeking for communion with God will be seen in the prayer meeting, faithful to do their duty and earnest and anxious to reap all the benefits they can gain. They will improve every opportunity of placing themselves where they can receive the rays of light from heaven. SC 98.1

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Ellen G. White
That I May Know Him, 225.1

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Philippians 4:6. TMK 225.1

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Ellen G. White
That I May Know Him, 260.2

Jesus taught His disciples to pray, and He often urged upon them the necessity of prayer. He did not bid them to study books to learn a form of prayer. They were not to offer prayer to men, but to make their requests known to God. He taught them that the prayer which God accepts is the simple, earnest petition from a soul that feels its need.... TMK 260.2

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Ellen G. White
This Day With God, 268.1

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Philippians 4:6. TDG 268.1

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Ellen G. White
The Ministry of Healing, 199

In the humble round of toil, the very weakest, the most obscure, may be workers together with God and may have the comfort of His presence and sustaining grace. They are not to weary themselves with busy anxieties and needless cares. Let them work on from day to day, accomplishing faithfully the task that God's providence assigns, and He will care for them. He says: MH 199.1

“In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6, A.R.V.; 4:7. MH 199.2

The Lord's care is over all His creatures. He loves them all and makes no difference, except that He has the most tender pity for those who are called to bear life's heaviest burdens. God's children must meet trials and difficulties. But they should accept their lot with a cheerful spirit, remembering that for all that the world neglects to bestow, God Himself will make up to them in the best of favors. MH 199.3

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