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Citizens: A Study On Philippians (Part 12)
August 30, 2020

Citizens: A Study On Philippians (Part 12)

August 30, 2020

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Catch up on the series HERE

 

Good Morning Jesus Church

Grateful to be with our church community today (here & online)

  • Please keep making every effort not to be isolated
    • We need community so much
    • Whether it’s a dinner party or a phone call
  • Reach out and connect
    • Because God made us to be in community with each other
    • 1st thing God saw as an issue with man “Not good to be alone”

Today we are entering Chapter 3 on Philippians

  • Last week Paul wrote about the importance of having
    • People that mentor
    • People that we mentor
  • We all need examples on how 2 live out the Gospel (why)
    • One – Following someone’s example is how people learn best
    • Two – So that we can learn from others failures & victories

Phil. 3:1-11

[PRAY]

Story – Ever had a friend no one would mess with

Where they could just look at someone and they would back off

  • When I was selling cell phones I helped a guy… 6’4” refrigerator
    • Full trench coat… silver slicked back hair… scar on his face
    • The guy just looked like he could kill someone
  • I helped him fix his phone so he could talk to his daughter
    • She was in labor… he couldn’t be there
    • Was a hitman for a large motorcycle gang
    • Made someone high ups mad – they let him leave with his life
  • But left his family… and couldn’t see his daughter have her 1st baby
    • So I invite him to church… he accepts Jesus…
    • After gave me his card & said if anyone ever gave me a problem
      • I’m not gonna lie… I walked around a little more confident

Tag: Paul feels the same … but the guy he finds confidence from: Jesus

 

Paul starts again repeating himself: Rejoice!

Then in verses 2 he references these “DOGS/EVILDOERS”

  • Which were Jewish bullies that came to the church after Paul left
    • Said… “We will tell u what you need to do to be close to God”
    • Sure Jesus is great… but that’s just the first step
      • Keep the Sabbath… get circumcised… don’t eat bacon
      • Do that and more… And God will approve of you
  • Paul says: No way… that isn’t right – Don’t listen to them (Phil. 3:2)
    • Serve God by His Spirit… boast in Jesus… no confidence in flesh
  • That word “Flesh” is the word SARX in the Greek (Paul uses it a lot)
    • In Romans he uses the word as a state of consciousness
    • That b4 Jesus we lived in the flesh – after Jesus we live in Spirit

Rom. 8:5

  • The case Paul makes when he uses the word SARX
    • Even though we are now alive/conscious to Christ…
    • We will forget and live based off our old consciousness
    • Trying to live in our FLESH instead of by the SPIRIT
  • Sorta like the MOVIE INCEPTION… with the dream state/reality
    • And the danger is mistaking the dream state for reality
    • Paul says the dream state is “Sarx” – real state is “Spirit”
  • And the “DOGS” Paul talks of put their confidence in their flesh
    • And are trying to make that the norm of Xian life
    • Paul says no… “We put confidence in Jesus”

Tag: And then he goes on and puts himself up against all these “DOGS”

Phil. 3:4

Paul says if u wanna go head 2 head – Play the “I’m holier game”… I win

  • Goes on to drop this unbeatable resume
    • Was raised by Jewish Torah abiding parents
    • I speak and read Hebrew (which was rare)
    • Of tribe of Benjamin (1 of only 2 tribes that could trace lineage)
    • He says… I’m so much passion for God… I killed people
    • I was a powerful Pharisee… I knew the OT better than anyone
    • And based on the law… I’m completely faultless
  • And Paul knows that no one can touch that list…

But then after Paul says everything he COULD lay on the table he says…

Phil 3:7

  • And that’s an accounting metaphor Paul uses (Any accountants)
    • Imagine you have a balance sheet – One side gains… other loses
    • Paul says all the things I just mentioned: I used 2 consider gains
    • They use to be my assets… not my liabilities
  • But then I found Jesus… and Jesus showed me what real value is
    • And I realized how far off my math is
    • And I moved all of my “gains” to “losses”
    • B/C I realized what I thought were my assets were liabilities

Phil 3:8

  • Uses the word “Consider” 2x: v.7 past tense / v.8 present tense
    • And he is saying when I met Jesus… I knew it was all worthless
    • Even now in the present… I still know that nothing has changed
  • Remember how much Paul gave up to follow Jesus
    • He was from a prominent/wealthy Jewish family
    • He was part of the Sanhedrin… most powerful people in Israel
    • Most scholars believe he was married – wife left him

Notice his lists … outside of persecution… it’s not bad

Everything (even good) compared to knowing Jesus is loss…

Phil. 3:8 (Paul goes even further than loss to emphasize his point)

  • That word garbage in the Greek is “Scubalon”
    • And it doesn’t just mean throwing away you Starbucks cup
    • No… it was a nasty, vulgar word (closest to expletive from Paul)
    • And I can’t say the English translation…
      • b/c I might get the “Scubalon” beat out of me if I do
  • Paul is saying I had to give up so much to follow Jesus
    • I had this promising career… money… people knew my name
  • So compared to knowing Jesus… it’s Scubalon
    • And I will put everything in loses… as long as Jesus is my gain

TAG: Now what does Paul mean by he “Gains” the Messiah

 

Paul lays out 4 things He (we) gain by following Jesus

Phil 3:9

1: You are found in Him (word is both present/future)

Paul says my benefit to following Jesus: Found right here/now in Jesus

  • But also in future (judgment) I will be found in Jesus as well
    • And that phrase “In Jesus” used over 100x in Paul’s letters
    • Theologically it’s the idea of union with God
    • Idea of when u are saved/baptized
      • You are saved INTO the death & rez of Jesus
      • INTO – meaning you become ONE with (union)
  • Why the imagery of baptism waters is so beautiful
    • That you are surrounded… engulfed by all that Jesus is and did

Col 3:3

This is where we get the phrase: God looks at you and see’s Jesus

  • And the reciprocal is true as well
    • When God looks at Jesus… He sees you
  • Example (water and lego man)
    • Lego man is in the water glass
      • You can’t see the glass w/o seeing the lego man
      • You can’t see the lego man w/o seeing the glass…
    • Why: Because lego guy is in the glass
      • That’s the idea – you are in Jesus… a son/daughter in God
      • God see you and yes… all your baggage and garbage
      • But He see’s you as a son or daughter… and you are in Him
  • And because you are in Christ… and remember Christ = Messiah
    • And Messiah was embodiment of what Israel was suppose 2 be
    • But the identity/job of God’s people came to life in one person
    • Meaning… when u are baptized into the Messiah
      • Also baptized into Israel (not ethnic… but people of God)
      • And in that moment you are the family of God

And what he is found in isn’t his own righteousness… but faith in God

  • This word Righteousness isn’t a word we really understand well
    • Its not really used outside of the church (except 80’s surfers)
    • If it is… more negative than positive way (self-righteous)
  • And problem is when I say the word “Righteous” in English
    • What comes to most people’s minds is morals (moral word)
    • Why self-righteous means “I’m better than you”
  • In Greek – It wasn’t a moral word… it was a legal word
    • Used in a court of law… stand before a judge (no jury)
    • That judge would “justify” you and declare you righteous
    • Saying you are right – could have nothing to do w/ morality
  • Paul saying I will stand in front of the Judge of the universe
    • On that day I don’t want a righteousness that comes from flesh
    • I need a righteousness that is way more powerful than that
    • And that comes through “faith in the Messiah”

And we also need to look at the word which is “Pistis” in the Greek

  • B/C when the scriptures were first being translated to English
    • There was a huge debate over how Pistis should be translated
    • Trying to figure out what best reflects the heart of this word
    • It was either “Faith” or “Faithfulness”
  • They ended up going with Faith… but the issue with that
    • Most people today think faith is synonym for belief… its not
    • Having “faith” in Jesus isn’t same as I “believe” in Jesus
  • Now absolutely FAITH includes belief – Scholar: Belief plus loyalty
    • Idea is YES I believe Jesus is the Messiah and God (but its more)
    • But it’s more than that… it’s loyalty as well
      • You believe but you ALSO trust in Jesus
      • You walk faithfully to Jesus
      • You hold on to Jesus… don’t let go… trust… stick with him
  • Every time I read about faith… I make sure I also think faithfulness
    • I am saved by grace through faithfulness
    • That is 110% valid way to read that text
    • I want a righteousness that comes through faithfulness
  • But notice not thru faithfulness period… faithfulness in Messiah
    • Paul just wants to hold on to Jesus
      • He just wants to stand b4 God on judgment day
      • Say um… I’m with him
      • Who cares what else is on the resume… I’m with him
  • Are you righteous this morning in the way we should understand it
    • That when God thinks about you… regardless of ur baggage
    • He can say: That’s my son… that’s my daughter
    • Are you??? If not – follow Jesus… repent… AND HOLD TO JESUS

TAG: And he goes on…

Phil 3:10

2: We gain a new knowledge of Him

Knowledge – Greek is Gonosko…

  • This word depicted a husband/wife who had been married decades
    • So much so that they knew each other better than themselves
    • Paul is saying: I want to know Jesus better than I know myself
    • And Paul says that you gain this ability when you follow Jesus
  • Back in verse 8… Paul used the same word: Gonosko

Phil 3:8

  • And again – Lord was Kirios which was the name for Yahweh
    • Paul saying: I get 2 know God in a way that is personal/intimate
    • This is only place in Paul letters he says Jesus is “mine”

When you follow Jesus.. you KNOW God

  • Not in an intellectual/head knowledge kind of way
    • But in a Gonosko way
    • Not just about God… but you KNOW God
  • We all know about people that we don’t actually know
    • I know all about the best QB in football – Russel Wilson
    • I even know people who know him
    • And I know about him… but I don’t know him (not my friend)
  • Same is true for so many in our world when it comes to God
    • Many people know there is a God
    • Maybe they even understand things about him thru creation
    • But only Jesus is a ticket to actually KNOW God
      • If there is one benefit to say about following Jesus
      • It’s that you get to KNOW the creator of the universe
      • GOD… shows me things in the Bible – I get to use 4 others

Tag: Next Paul says…

Phil. 3:10

3: You become like Jesus in his death

Now I know 4 me… I’m good w/ knowing Jesus… power of resurrection

  • Am I excited about participating in his sufferings? (nope I’m out)
    • Lets skip that line and stick with knowledge and resurrection
    • Problem: Paul knows resurrection lies on other side of the cross
    • Glory lies on the other side of suffering
    • Hope lies on the other side of despair
  • Paul understands that its in times of suffering
    • That u know Jesus in a deeper way
    • And that you become more like Jesus
  • Suffering (some of u know) “can be” when u open ur life to H.S.
    • It can be an incubator from growth
      • B/C I know for me… when life is good – Its harder to grow
      • I’m not stretched… I’m not refined… I’m not persevering
    • But when things are hard… uncertain… painful
      • That’s when I have to dig my feet in ground of God’s word
      • Get on my face and pray for strength to make it through
      • It’s in those times that we find the greatest growth

It’s becoming like him in his death

  • Can translate it: Being continually conformed to his death
    • Which is imagery of being conformed or reformed or shaped
    • Think of a form to make concrete
    • Take plywood and put it in the form you want to concrete to be
  • Pour the concrete into the form that you want it to look like
    • In time it hardens… when ready you take off the forms
      • And you have a model of what the forms were
    • We’re doing demo in room behind the stage… its all concrete
      • Joel/Kyle/Myself are looking at the ceiling that’s concrete
      • And we actually thought it might be wood
      • B/C the plywood forms left perfect wood grain in concrete
        • The concrete was shaped and imprinted by the form
  • Paul is saying: Jesus life/resurrection is the form we are to live by
    • The form we are to pour our lives into
      • And what happens thru the years (particularly in suffering)
      • We are hardened into an image of Jesus
    • Then you take off the forms and wow… you look like Jesus
      • I can see the grain of Jesus
      • I can see the characteristics of Jesus
      • You have an imprint of Jesus as the reflection of ur life

Tag: and the reason Paul can say all of this with confidence and hope

Phil 3:11

4: You gain a brand new future in Jesus

This is what you and I get to look forward to

  • That one day after death… after being present with the Lord
    • There will be a resurrection of the dead
    • And we will rule and reign with Jesus in a perfect world
  • Will be no more pain… suffering… hate… masks… distance learning
    • You will have the innocence of a child – wisdom of an elder
    • This is what we get to look forward to
  • But do we… do we have at least one eye on the horizon of future
    • Think of that when you wake up in the morning
    • Think of that when ur struggling with those who wronged u
    • Think of that in the uncertainty of information u are waiting for

Because whatever cross is heavy on ur shoulders right now

  • Remember that after the cross comes resurrection (literally)
    • What happened to Jesus: death > burial > resurrection
    • Happens to every follower of Jesus
      • Physically (yes one day) but also Spiritually… Emotionally
  • That’s how Paul can say all that other stuff he worked so hard for
    • It’s skubalon compared to knowing Jesus…
    • What do u need to start seeing as skubalon
  • What are you valuing greater than Jesus…
    • It doesn’t mean you have to get rid of it (maybe it does)
    • But it does mean that it shouldn’t matter compared to Jesus
      • It shouldn’t dictate your emotions
      • It shouldn’t dictate your decisions
      • It shouldn’t dictate your outlook on life
        • Because Jesus is so much greater

And so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

 

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