By Apostle André Pelser
Philippians 3:7-14 – But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. 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 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; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
- Press on to the excellence of the knowledge of Christ – experiential
- To be found in His righteousness (by faith)
- To know Him in the power of His resurrection, to attain to it
- To know the fellowship of His sufferings and be conformed to His death
- Being perfected in Him – the upward call in Him
Paul was the perfect Jew: from the tribe of Benjamin, circumcised on the 8th day, a leader among Pharisees, sitting at the feet of Gemalial, probably the next leader, keeping the Law (except covetousness) – and he had to learn to call all these things that were gain to him as dung in order to press on to the higher calling of the Lord. He had to deny himself to become a blessing to others.
In order to press on he had to do 3 things:
- Forget what is behind
- Count things that were gain to him as loss
- Count them as dung – if they are still precious to you, it is difficult to leave them behind)
We are the circumcision who worship God in spirit and rejoice in Christ and have no confidence in the flesh. We learn to overcome all resistance in order to know Christ. We learn to suffer for righteousness’ sake, not wrong doing.
‘For whose sake I have been caused to forfeit (put down) things that were gain to me and count them all as loss. (Paul’s Jewish culture and the opportunities awaiting him as a leader of the Pharisees)
Photo by Jared Erondu