Philippians 3:1-11 – July 21
The Bible is basically a compilation of love letters from our Father in heaven, His loving words breathed onto each page. Over the next several months, as we study the letters of the Bible, Galatians through Jude, I pray that You will experience His eternal love in new ways and that it will transform you. These letters were written by Christian leaders, most of them by Paul, to establish and grow the Christian Church. For us, they are filled with love and gold nuggets on living a Christian life. Join along in our study by reading today’s scripture, journaling on it using SOAP, then sharing how God spoke to you today. Below is the NIV version of today’s reading, then below that is a SOAP from one of our study leaders. The Comments section on our website is an open forum for sharing, requesting prayer, and asking questions.
Philippians 3:1-11 – No Confidence in the Flesh
Further, my brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you. 2 Watch out for those dogs, those evildoers, those mutilators of the flesh. 3 For it is we who are the circumcision, we who serve God by his Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh— 4 though I myself have reasons for such confidence.
If someone else thinks they have reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: 5 circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; 6 as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for righteousness based on the law, faultless.
7 But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.
Garbage | Becky Newman
My Bible actually diagrams Paul’s ladder of self-exaltation from verses 4-6 that leads to the garbage can and contrasts it to Paul’s attaining to the resurrection from the dead in verses 8-11 that leads to eternity in heaven.
What have I thrown away for Jesus? Or better, what is God revealing to me that is garbage in my life? Becky’s ladder of self-exaltation: (1) baptized in the Catholic Church at 10 days old, (2) learned to follow rules and my own works to get to heaven, (3) in the pursuit of perfection graduated Valedictorian from high school, (4) went to college with a full-ride scholarship, (5) scientifically proved the existence of God in a 3-page paper, (6) graduated with B.S. degrees in two sciences, (7) moved to California to begin a graduate program with the top biometeorologist in the world where I would be conducting my own research in the rainforest studying the effects of climate change and saving the world single-handedly — and then I threw it all away for a boy…who eventually pointed me to Jesus who saved me instead. I, like Paul, have not looked back after throwing that all away. God’s path and plan are so much better than mine! I see Him at work in everything!
Thank You for bringing me to the point of throwing that old life in the garbage can and making me new and improved in You! It’s incredible how You have used my experiences in my old life for Your glory now! Continue to reveal the garbage in my life and help me throw it in the can so that I can gain a closer relationship with You.
The Discover One Thing main website continues to follow the Life Journal Reading Plan which covers the whole Bible in one year. Click HERE to check out today’s Discover One Thing post.