He wanted to see the power of the resurrection changing him from the inside out and making him a vessel for Christ to live through. Those that look to the past are in danger of becoming complacent, apathetic, lethargic, passive, indolent. There will always be room to be a better husband or wife. (1) In the movie “City Slickers,” Billy Crystal plays a confused, dissatisfied thirty-something character with a vague sense that life is passing him by. Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and turn away from evil. Do not let yourself become distracted by sin or anything that hinders. What is that thing? That is just a misconception, because no one has it altogether, including the Apostle Paul, as we will see our study today. There are those that teach the way to a holy life is to “let go and let God.” In the sense of letting go of our own self righteousness and letting God redeem us by His grace through faith in Jesus Christ, that is true. After warning the Philippians to beware of the “dogs,” “evil workers” and “false circumcision” who would seek to lead them astray from the gospel, Paul went on to clearly state the reasons why. His advice to Timothy,“But flee from these things [sin], you man of God; and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance [and] gentleness. Our gift of this teaching article by Pastor Jack Hayford is made possible by your gracious support of the ministry. Do you ever consider the Christian walk to be difficult, like it is always an uphill climb? If we are to know Jesus as Paul describes here in Philippians 3, we must learn to trust and walk with Christ in obedience to His commands. A. All claims to eradicate sin in this life are false. . I have felt that way at times. 15 Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; 16 however, let us keep living by that same [standard] to which we have attained. The runner took his eyes off the finish line and looked to the side at the other runners. We need to make sure that we are looking ahead toward the finish line and not behind us or to the sides. Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. 2:22). Paul had already explained in Romans 6 that though the bondage to sin was broken when you become a Christian, this simply means that you now have a choice. Eventually you decided you wanted to spend your lives and you got married. And the maximization of the creativity He pours into us will always be in proportion to our humility before Him. In regards to the positive things, I can assure you that they can only continue to happen as each of us is diligent to press on in our own Christian walk and use our God given gifts in serving the Lord and one another. Give your life away because to save it, you will inevitably lose it. Paul states in verse 12, Not that I have already obtained [it], or have already become perfect, but I press on in order that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Though you will never be all that you want to be, you will need to thank God that you are not what you were. Occurring three times in Philippians 3:4-14, “dioko” intermittently describes “to follow,” “to pursue,” “to persecute,” or “to flee,” suggesting impassioned pursuit. Recognize the areas you still need to grow. But Paul states here that he was purposely forgetting what lies behind. 25 And everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. The imperishable wreath here is the “upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” It is the honors that will be received in heaven because of God’s calling of us in Christ Jesus and how we served Him. 9:14-27 earlier in which he describes this prize as an “imperishable wreath.” He contrasts this to the perishable wreath made of olive branches that the winners of the Isthmian or Olympic games would have received. Do you trust Him enough to diligently follow Him in obedience and through that, let him mold you into the image of His son? Are you pressing on? Get connected! Concerning sin; “Flee immorality” (1 Cor. “The secret of life is pursuing one thing.” Somehow this resonates deeply with Billy Crystal’s character. 12:10, “Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”. Sometimes I do, especially on a Saturday afternoon in the fall.
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