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Philippians 3:1-11

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verse 1. Finally my brothers rejoice in the Lord.
verse 1 same things… What are these same things? Philippians
verse 1 same things… What are these same things? Well he has given the example of 3 different individuals so far. 1st Christ , then Timothy, and then Epaphroditus. Paul in the following verses will explain his own humility to the gospel. The former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition.
What does rejoice in the Lord mean? Personally I think this can mean many things. John Piper notes the many ways this term in mentioned in the book of their participation in the gospel. 1:18 that Christ is proclaimed. 2:2 the unity of Love. 2:17 their faith. 2:18 Paul faith and sustaining death. 2:28 Epaphroditus risk taking ministry. 4:1 the Philippians themselves. 4:4 that we are secure in the book of heaven. 4:10 that they support Paul financially in the gospel. He went on to add that only believers rejoice in this way. So there are many reasons the Philippians can rejoice, just like there are many reasons we can rejoice.
no trouble.. Paul doesnt want the readers to think this letter is of trouble to them, but he wants them to understand thats it is safe for them. Warnings are safe for Christians. It its safe for you to see my personal example.
Paul says also in verse 1 the same things while its not exactly clear what this means exactly means, he is about to repeat things he has already said.
Paul also says in verse that it is no trouble to write these things to them, it is actually safe for him to write these things to them. Paul is about to warn them about these evil doers. Warnings in scripture are safe for believers. We need warnings to remind us of evil around us and sometimes in us.
verse 2 is better understood in light of verse 3.
Circumcision is not by mutilating the flesh it is done by the spirit of God.
romans 2:25-29 For circumcision indeed is of value if you obey the law, but if you break the law, your circumcision becomes uncircumcision. 26So, if a man who is uncircumcised keeps the precepts of the law, will not his uncircumcision be regarded as circumcision? 27Then he who is physically uncircumcised but keeps the law will condemn you who have the written code and circumcision but break the law. 28For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. 29But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God.
Our glory is in Christ. There glory is not. They are like Dogs Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you. Dogs are not fit to receive Holy Things. Dogs are not like we imagine them today, they are must worse. What the true proverb says has happened to them: "The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire." Dogs satisfy thier appetites in whatever they can get. A christians appetite can only be satisfied in Christ.
We put no confidence in the flesh put they do.
Piper gives three things Dogs dont have that we do as Christians do.
1. Dogs dont have the Holy Spirit.
2. Dogs dont see Jesus as their glory
3. Dogs have confidence in their own flesh.
we can see this same type of language in which says, “For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things”
I love the pattern of this scripture though. Paul is making an argument that if anyone has confidence in the flesh he does.
Look at Pauls confidence circumcised on the 8th day. He who is eight days old among you shall be circumcised. Every male throughout your generations, whether born in your house or bought with your money from any foreigner who is not of your offspring. He was circumcised not later in life, but according to scripture.
He was of the people of Israel. says, I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin.
He was of the tribe of Benjamin. Benjamin was a tribe who stayed loyal when the north and south split. It is possible that Paul or better known as Saul was named after king Saul who was a Benjamite.
He was a Hebrew of Hebrews. He had Hebrew parents. he did not adopt something called Hellenism. He still maintained his Hebrew language and customs. Instead of the customs of the rules around them. We know he knew Greek, and about there lifestyles but he didnt replace his hebrew roots.
Next we see that as to the law he was a Pharisee. They have known for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that according to the strictest party of our religion I have lived as a Pharisee. Pharisees were strict keepers of the law. Paul studied under Gamaliel who was the most celebrated Pharisee.
The next one is as to zeal a persecutor of the church. We read in the book of Acts about Paul and his persecution for the church. According to he intensely persecuted the church and tried to destroy it.

The account of Paul’s persecution of the church in Acts attests that Paul’s aggressive attack on the church included threats of murder and imprisonment (Acts 8:3; 9:1; 22:4–6; 26:10–11). According to Acts, Paul was identified (7:58) with those who attacked the Jewish Christians for speaking against the temple and against the law (6:11–14).

finally he says, as to righteousness under the law blameless. Its interesting that he says this. Because in Romans chapter 7 he explains how bad he actually he. in 1 Timothy he calls himself the chief of sinners. No doubt he was not without sin. Luke 18:21

Since he had worked to achieve complete conformity to these rules, leaving nothing undone, no outsider could blame him, nor did he blame himself

before we move on to verses 7-11 I want to discuss something I found in my study time for this and its 7 deadly confidences we have for salvation.
Rituals such as baptism infant and by immersion/Lords supper or any other rituals
right ancestry
special accomplishments
special ethnic devotion.
strictness of religion/law
zeal if you just sincere
morally right behavior.
Do you hold on to any of these??? If you do repent.
Verse 7 Whatever gain I have… Paul did see his accomplishes anymore as a way a God, he counted them as loss. All those accolades that we once treasured are gone. They were no profit to him. says, He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: 10"Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.' 13But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, a sinner!' 14I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted." The pharisee relied on his own merit. The tax relies on Gods mercy. we must be like that tax collected and we must be like Paul is here in verses 7 and 8.
I like what one commentator adds about verse 7 he says,
verse 8. Indeed I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I suffered the loss of all things and i count them as rubbish in order that I may gain Christ.
Paul recalculates the value of all of the advantages of his family and his accomplishments, his social class and his moral achievements, and then he enters the new bottom line: they all add up to one overwhelming disadvantage, one huge loss.
verse 8. Indeed I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I suffered the loss of all things and i count them as rubbish in order that I may gain Christ.
The greatest treasure we can ever have is knowing Christ. Verse 8 should be written on every Christians heart. I think of two parables that i believe coincide with this verse…
The Parable of the Hidden Treasure
44"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.
The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value
45"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, 46who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.
McArthur describes the knowledge of Christ Jesus as this… To know Christ is not simply to have intellectual knowledge about him, Paul used the Greek verb that means to know experientially or personally. It is equivalent to shared life with Christ. It also corresponds to a Hebrew word of Gods knowledge of his people and their knowledge of him in love and obedience. Paul experienced Christ and it changed him forever.
verse 8 also has features the term rubbish. This term can be translated into the word dung or feces. Compared to knowing Christ Paul saw his work and loss of things as rubbish. Christ is his greatest treasure is he yours?
verse 9-11 speak of justification, sanctification, and glorification.
verse 9 speaks of justification. Paul notes that justification is not by his own works, but entirely based on the righteousness of God.
:16For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, "The righteous shall live by faith." By faith alone in Christ alone we are justified. It says it depends on faith. When we believe we get the righteousness of Christ.
verse 10. every step in this life should aim to know Christ. He aims to know him in two ways. One to know the power of his resurrection. Two participation in his sufferings. These two things go hand and hand. Without the power of God through the Holy Spirit suffering is unbearable. Both these things conform us into the image of Christ.

Being conformed to his death can be interpreted in several ways: (1) Paul may be referring to his martyrdom. Just as the sufferings of Jesus led to his death on the cross, so also Paul’s sufferings led to his execution.145 Paul’s reference to resurrection from the dead in the next verse may indicate that he is thinking about his physical death and resurrection. Yet, Paul seems to be viewing his whole life, not just the end of his life, as a process of being conformed to Christ’s death by his participation in Christ’s suffering. In other words, this last phrase in verse 10 explains what is happening to Paul during his whole experience of participation in Christ’s sufferings.

(2) Being conformed to his death may also be interpreted as a reference to the inward experience of dying to sin by being united with Christ in his death: “For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin” (Rom 6:6).146 Certainly Paul is concerned in this letter with being free from sin, pure and blameless (1:10; 2:14). But the difficulty with interpreting this phrase in the light of the parallel with Rom 6:1–6 is that it limits the reference of being conformed to his death to the beginning of life in Christ since this passage refers to being united with Christ’s death through baptism: “all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death” (Rom 6:3). Paul is not referring to the beginning of his life in Christ, but to his entire experience of participation in Christ’s sufferings as a process of being conformed to his death.147

(3) Being conformed to his death may be interpreted as a reference to Paul’s obedience in his faithful proclamation of the gospel of Christ. The link between partnership (koinōnia) in the gospel and participation (koinōnia) in his sufferings connects sufferings to the proclamation of the gospel, and those sufferings for the sake of the gospel are the means by which Paul is conformed to the death of Christ. Paul’s reference to Christ’s death is primarily a reference to Christ’s obedience: he humbled himself by becoming obedient unto death (2:8). The main point of application that Paul takes from the Christ hymn is obedience: immediately after the hymn he calls his readers to obedience (2:12). Their obedience will cause them to shine like stars in the sky as they hold firmly to the word of life (2:15–16). Paul calls them to express their obedience by living in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ (1:27). Their obedience will inevitably cause them to face opposition and to suffer (1:28–29). And their suffering will continually shape them to be like Christ, who was obedient unto death.

These three interpretations do not need to be set against each other as separate alternatives. Paul’s experience of being conformed to Christ’s death may well include his sense of facing his own execution, his awareness that he was baptized into the death of Christ to be freed from sin, and his appreciation that his sufferings for the gospel are shaping his obedience so that he will reflect Christ, who was obedient unto death.

verse 11. Paul closes out this section with the words by any means possible. Spurgeon
See to what Paul is looking forward—resurrection—and therefore he lets this life go as of secondary importance. He is willing to suffer as Christ suffered, and to die as Christ died. You and I may never be called to make that great sacrifice; but if we are true followers of Christ, we shall be prepared for it. If ever it should happen that Christ and our life shall be put in competition, we must not deliberate for a moment, for Christ is all, and we must be ready to give up all for Christ.
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