Rejoice and Grow - Philippians 3:1-11

Rejoice and Grow

Sometimes, I am reminded of the same things multiple times. Sometimes, when reading the Word, I feel as if God tells me the same points no matter which passage I read.

Maybe it is because I need the continued reminders because I am not understanding what God is telling me or I continue to make the same mistakes? 
Philippians 3:1-11

1 Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. For me to write the same things to you is not tedious, but for you it is safe.

2 Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilation! 3 For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh, 4 though I also might have confidence in the flesh. If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so: 5 circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; 6 concerning zeal, persecuting the church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

7 But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. 8 Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; 10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, 11 if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.


How frequently are we reminded of the same thing or asked to do the same thing? Paul says to rejoice in the Lord! Paul reminds the Philippians of the same things regarding Christ, but he says that he never gets tired of reminding them of the Gospel. Sometimes, God repeatedly tells us the same thing…maybe it’s because we continually need the same reminder? Additionally, we should never tire of hearing the message of Jesus Christ, nor should we tire of reminding others of the message of Christ. In our daily lives, it is easy to become overwhelmed and lose sight of what is important. It is easy to lose sight during the trials or daily stresses we encounter. 

Now that we are reminded to rejoice, Paul tells us to pay attention and beware of the evil-doers and of the opponents of the Gospel. He reminds us that it isn't about a physical symbol of circumcision. It's not anything physical that we can do to earn our salvation. It's because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ that we are able to put our confidence in Him. But how much confidence DO we place in God and not our own merit or abilities? If we aren’t putting our confidence and trust in God, are we continually being reminded of the same thing or going through the same trial? Are we being resistant in our walk? 

Paul says that he followed the law to the "T" and has every right to boast in the flesh; however, he counts it all as loss for the sake of Christ. Paul suffered tremendous loss for the sake of Christ. He is writing this from the prison, but he remains steadfast in the only thing that matters: Christ. Paul's goal is to be "found" in Christ because he understands that it is not by Paul's own works. Paul also desires to "know" Him and the power of Christ's resurrection, sharing in His sufferings so that he can live and be more like Christ. 

How often are we doing this in our daily lives? Are we desiring to be "found" in Christ? Where is our foundation being placed? Paul understood the importance of a solid spiritual foundation and that a proper foundation was not built upon his own righteousness. Paul understood that in order to be ‘found’ in Christ, there was a commitment to remain steadfast in faith and empty himself so that the only thing filling his life was Christ. But, how do we get to that point in our lives? How do we progress in our spiritual maturity so that we aren’t constantly being reminded of the same thing or going through the same trials? How do we grow?

Growth requires a commitment to God’s Word. We are unable to grow in our spiritual maturity if we don’t pursue the heart of God. This requires dedicating time to read and study the Truth that is written in God’s Word, but it also requires dedicated time conversing with God through prayer. The more we understand God’s Word and the more we spend time in prayer with God, the more mature we become. We are reminded to take joy in the trials we experience because this is where growth occurs. Again, growth is not through our physical strength but with humility and submission. Furthermore, our spiritual growth, our study of the Word, and our time in prayer enable us to remain vigilant and be more aware of false teachers and evil-doers.
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