Giving it all up (Philippians 3)

 But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ.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, Phil. 3:7-8

As I listened to this person sharing their testimony, it seemed as if they had made extremely difficult sacrifices to come to Christ.  This person spoke of their old life as if it was amazing.  Tears seemed to swell up in this person’s eyes as they told of their old life.  I wondered, were they longing to go back there?

Question:  Is this Paul’s view as he writes the first verses of chapter 3?  We must admit he uses the following phrases, “I counted all as loss” and “I suffered the loss…” Surely Paul is not longing to go back to his old way of life?

The reality of Paul’s teaching is this: He had to lose his pride and he had to sacrifice his self-confidence in his self efforts to be right with God.   It was suffering to admit all of his efforts had merited him zero value in heaven.

Paul is giving glory to Christ for redeeming him. Paul has received the righteousness of Christ by faith.  Paul seeks the day when he will be resurrected from the dead because of Christ.

Brothers and sisters, there is suffering in coming to Christ.  The suffering of admitting we have wasted years, resources, and opportunities in the past.

Brothers and sisters, there is loss in coming to Christ.  The loss of pride, self-worth, and the loss of the flesh.

But consider what we gain:

20 But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. Phil. 3:20-21

Question: Have you suffered the loss as of yet?  If not, right now cease placing any
confidence in your flesh. Forget what has been your past and come to Jesus.  Begin now
to pursue Him with everything within you.
Question:  Are you trying to turn back to what you gave up?  Hear me clearly, there is no value in your old life.  Going back would be like going to the garbage dump in search of a meal.
Lean in once again and know Him!!!

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