"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." (Philippians 4:8)
It is nearly impossible these days to turn on the TV, go shopping, go out to eat, read a newspaper, go online, etc., without our minds being cluttered and our thinking infiltrated by all sorts of improper thoughts. In our text, Paul gives us guidelines for our thinking. Let us investigate them.
True--or genuine, honest, and sincere. We should concentrate on honesty in all our dealings, for, "God is true" (John 3:33), and Christ said, "my record is true" (John 8:14).
Honest--or better, honorable toward all. Strive to "lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty" (1 Timothy 2:2).
Just--or equitable. "Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal" (Colossians 4:1).
Pure--without spot or stain. "Neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure" (1 Timothy 5:22).
Lovely--literally, "towards love," i.e., those things which demonstrate love or a response of love. This word only appears here in the New Testament.
Of good report--that which elicits praise.
Virtue--a standard of righteousness. He "hath called us to glory and virtue" (2 Peter 1:3).
Praise--our speech should be to "the praise of them that do well" (1 Peter 2:14).
Surely our lifestyle and thought patterns need adjusting as noted above, particularly when the verb tense in the command "think on these things" implies a life-long habit--a continuous way of doing things. JDM