Philippians 4: 8-9
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.
Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
Background for this verse:
Paul was in prison in Rome around AD60. The church at Philippi was one of the purest churches Paul had founded and the first European church. This letter was written about 10 years after its founding and it had been 3 or 4 years since he had last seen them.
He can still write to them about having joy and thinking about good things after he has been beaten, stoned, and imprisoned on occasion for 30 years because he still has joy.
think (logizomai pronounced )
make those things the subjects of your thoughtful considerations; carefully reflect on them; to think upon a matter by way of
taking account of its character
So if good things are all we think about, we will start to take on God’s character
virtue (arete – pronounced )
moral excellence – virtue is enjoined as an essential quality in the exercise of faith
praise (epainos – pronounced )
whatever is praiseworthy
Everything that was honest and just toward God and toward people was to be practiced by the Christians here, and they were in all things to be examples of the highest kind of morality. They were not to be faithful in their duties to God, and to neglect their duty to people, not to be punctual in their religious rites, and neglectful of the comment laws of morality; but they were to do everything that could be regarded as the fair subject of commendation, and that was implied in the highest moral character.
The word true refers here to everything that was the reverse of falsehood.