Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you is no trouble to me and is safe for you. Look out for the dogs, look out for the evildoers, look out for those who mutilate the flesh. For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh— though I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. 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 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Philippians 3:1-11
Before Paul’s encounter with Jesus on that Damascus road he pretty much had it made. He was an educated man and had been given a coveted assignment to weed out the followers of Jesus. He had brought many believers in Jerusalem before the Jewish court and was given to assignment to find them in other parts of Palestine. Here was Paul one of God’s chosen people doing what he truly felt was God’s work. Life was good.
When we first meet Paul he is known as Saul and we find him holding the cloaks of the men stoning Stephen. Saul is looking on approving of what is happening. The next time we see Saul he is on the Damascus road and has his life changing encounter with Jesus. Suddenly everything that he valued was became nothing to him and he became Paul the greatest evangelist in history.
Paul had tasted everything the world had to offer. He had been a powerful man yet he writes to the Philippians that all that was rubbish when compared to Christ. Like Paul we can have power, riches, great health and family but unless we have Christ in our lives we have nothing. Everything we have in this world will stay in this world. We come into it with no possessions and we will leave it the same way. The only thing we can gain in this world that we can take into the next is God’s grace.
Have a blessed day,