Philippians 3:1–11 (ESV)
Righteousness Through Faith in Christ
3 Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you is no trouble to me and is safe for you.
2 Look out for the dogs, look out for the evildoers, look out for those who mutilate
the flesh. 3 For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh— 4 though I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for 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; as to the law, a Pharisee; 6 as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. 7 But whatever
gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order 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 comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— 10 that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and
may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
In a way, I can relate to Paul in today’s passage. I had
a career I loved, a house I loved, friends that I loved, a church that I loved, and a salary that allowed my wife to stay home before I went into the ministry. The ministry was the last thing I was thinking about until God redirected my life. It
involved giving up a career and moving my wife and three kids to Fort Wayne, IN, to begin the seminary. Life would never be the same. My salary would never be the same. My spiritual walk would never be the same. The future was based
on uncertainties. Now... 15 years later... I have no regrets. Lori has to work, money has been tight, our 75 year old house is in need of repairs... but I would trade it for what life used to be. There is a joy in knowing, sharing, teaching,
preaching, and sharing the sacraments... “that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.” I have obtained
it and it comes to me through the faith that God has given me. This truth... is yours also... through faith! I was a Christian before, but now I get to see God’s handiwork everyday in the lives of my flock. Paul is speaking in a much
deeper sense in that He came from a past drenched in the Law and was pulled out and into the light of Christ through the Gospel. We all as believers have been rescued.
I pray: Dear Lord Jesus,
by your grace you set me free to live in your righteousness and in your image. Loosen my grip on earthly advantage, and take my hand in yours. Amen.