All My “Creds” are Garbage??? – Joy in Believing – PHILIPPIANS (Chapter 3b) [9]

I ended the last post, Yeah, but I’ve Got the “Creds”!!  –  Joy in Believing –  PHILIPPIANS  (Chapter 3a)   [8], http://wp.me/p5nZpi-sk, with a seemingly hopeless statement from Paul as he reflected on his academic and religious accomplishments.

He said,  “I once thought all these things were so very important, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done.  Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.  I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with Him”…  – Phil. 3:7-9a

Although it seems like Paul is throwing “everything” away,

                           9-Man-throwing-garbage-bag-1024x769

this isn’t exactly the case.

It wasn’t a matter of Paul suddenly forgetting all his education, his knowledge, his upbringing.  No, it was Paul’s realization that no matter what he did, or how “religious” he was, he could never “earn” himself a spot in heaven.

What he believed caused him to take matters into his own hands.  Caused him to imprison and attack Christ-followers in the name of God.  Caused him to judge, and force people to follow what he believed to be correct.  A dangerous approach, if you ask me.  However, isn’t it easy to find ourselves falling into that same pattern.  “I know what’s better for you…”

Throughout his life, Paul, was relying on himself.  He truly wanted to please God.  He truly wanted all people to follow God.  He believed that through knowledge and will-power he would be able to follow the “law”, and therefore be considered righteous in God’s eyes.  However, The law simply shows us how sinful we are.  –  Romans 3:20  For the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as a person who has broken all of God’s laws.  – James 2:10

Do you remember Paul’s message to the Corinthians – If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.  –  1 Corinthians 13:33

What a change in Paul’s approach!!  He retained his knowledge, education, and upbringing so he could teach, but instead of coming at people with an iron fist,

                                          ironfist

he came from a position of love.

                                     cute-love-quotes-373

 

WHAT CAUSED THIS SEISMIC SHIFT?

Let’s look again at verse 9, and add in the second half of the verse.

“I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ.  For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith.”Philippians 3:9b

FAITH?  FAITH IN WHAT?

< Faith in “Creds”? or Faith in Christ?  –  Joy in Believing –  PHILIPPIANS  (Chapter 3)   [10],  http://wp.me/p5nZpi-t9 >

 

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Are ALL People Children of God??? – (Part 1 of 3)

This question, Are all people children of God?, has been on my mind for the past few weeks. This flame was fanned by the current sermon series being taught at the church we attend.

Because I disagreed with what the preacher was teaching, all people are children of God, and all people are adopted sons and daughters of God, I decided to do some digging in the Scriptures, they (the Bereans) received the Word (Scriptures) with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth.Acts 17:11

Below is a brief summary of the first two weeks of the message series.

In week 1 of the series,

The preacher said that Paul wrote the letter of Ephesians to remind the Ephesian Christ-followers, and us, about their identity.

He proceeded to quote from Ephesians 1:3-6 – All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ.  Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.  So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son.

He proceeded by saying, “As Christ-followers our primary identity is not built on something we do, but on something that has already been done.  Through Jesus Christ, you’ve been adopted as God’s son, as God’s daughter.  YOU ARE A CHILD OF GOD.”

[The message seemed ok, to this point, but further along in the message…]

The preacher said, “You are so much more than the labels that you might be wearing (some examples of labels – mom, businessman, electrician, not smart, weak, 4 eyes, etc.) you don’t have to find your identity in those things anymore.  It is possible to step away from the competition and comparing to discover the truth of who you are.  And this is that truth, YOU ARE GOD’S ADOPTED SON, YOU ARE GOD’S ADOPTED DAUGHTER.  YOU ARE A CHILD OF GOD. That is your primary identity.”

[So that’s that?  I simply need to realize that there is more to me than my labels?]

In week 2 of the series,

The preacher’s message again was, “We are first and foremost children of God, members of God’s familyI am God’s child, you are God’s child.  That is the identity that defines us.”

He then quoted Galatians 3:28 – There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus, and says, “Instead, of looking at someone as male or female, black or white, rich or poor, young or old, look at them as your brother, or your sister.”

[Sounds like a nice enough message.]

**But is it possible that the preacher is downplaying, or simply choosing to ignore ALL that the scripture is saying.**

IS THE PRONOUNCEMENT THAT ALL PEOPLE ARE GOD’S CHILDREN ACCURATE ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE??

My response is No!!

Are ALL People Children of God???  –  (Part 2)  http://wp.me/p5nZpi-pI

Response to Reader’s Comment – Are All People Children of God???  (Part 2)   http://wp.me/p5nZpi-ro

Are ALL People Children of God???  –  (Part 3 of 3)   http://wp.me/p5nZpi-rg

 

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