Spiritual Formation

“Eureka!”

Context

Philippians 3:3-10, NIV,

3 “For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh— 4 though I myself have reasons for such confidence. If anyone else thinks he has reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more:

5-6

-circumcised on the eighth day,

-of the people of Israel,

-of the tribe of Benjamin,

-a Hebrew of Hebrews;

-in regard to the law, a Pharisee;

-as for zeal, persecuting the church;

-as for legalistic righteousness, faultless.”

Continuing to Consider

7 “But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ.”

“I now consider” is a poor translation of the Greek. It makes it sound as though this was a realization that Paul came to over time when in fact that is not the case. Paul uses the word:

That day, years before, when Paul met Jesus on his way to Damascus, he made a decision. He exercised hegemonic authority over his value system and made the decision that everything that he might have considered to be gain to him would forevermore be considered as in comparison to knowing Christ Jesus.

8 “What is more, I consider everything a loss…I consider them rubbish,”

Here, the Greek word supporting the English “consider” is in the present tense which means “I still consider everything loss. I am continuing to do it.”

Every day we are presented with the opportunity to allow other things (internal and external) to compete with our love for Jesus. Every day we have to exert hegemonic authority over those other things.

Eureka!

“that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him,”

“To discover, to come upon,” refers to the condition in which one will be found. In Paul’s mind here is the great reckoning day, Resurrection Day, when our lives will be reckoned in the books!

Luke 18:8, NIV,

However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?

Ever lifted a rock up and observed what was happening underneath it?

Righteousness

“not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.”

Positional and Progressive

Romans 4:1–5, NIV,

What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather, discovered in this matter? 2 If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3 What does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”4 Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. 5 However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness.

Isaiah 45:8, NIV,

8“You heavens above, rain down righteousness; let the clouds shower it down. Let the earth open wide, let salvation spring up, let righteousness grow with it; I, the Lord, have created it.

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