15 Sep

Yet whatever gains I had, these I have come to regard as loss because of Christ. More than that, I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things, and I regard them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but one that comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God based on faith. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us then who are mature be of the same mind; and if you think differently about anything, this too God will reveal to you. Only let us hold fast to what we have attained. (Philippians 3:7-16, NRSV)

This passage is wonderful and a part of a great book.

But here Paul tells the Philippians to press on in life and not let the stuff around them take hold of them and keep them from God.

Paul said that he has suffered the loss of all things and has regarded them as “rubbish”. At least the NRSV says rubbish, the KJV says dung… The word in the Greek is σκύβαλα (skubala). It means dung, filth, refuse. But its derivation is uncertain according to my Greek dictionary. This si probably because this is the only time this word is used in all of the Bible and it is hardly used, if at all, in other Greek literature. I was taught this was probably a street term used by Paul to make a point. All things are shit next to the saving power of Christ!

You see we can press on towards the goal of obtaining the gift of eternal life, forgetting everything that is behind us, because really what does all of this matter. If we are pressing on towards God and the life that Jesus has for us, all of life is nothing compared to the immeasurable joy we will have in Him.

So press on! Knowing He will always be with you.



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