SGA 13th. Street Baptist Church Philippians Lesson 5


Lesson 5
Philippians 3:1-11

E-Mail - Henry Mahan

(Vs. l..) Paul begins chapter 3 with the theme and watchword of every believer: "Rejoice in our Lord.' Christ Jesus is our chief joy:

"To write the same things to you is not tiresome." He rejoices to repeat the gospel of Christ over and over, for it is necessary.

(Vs.2.) These are the false teachers from the Jews, who were imposing the works and ceremonies of the law upon the Gentiles as being necessary to salvation. Paul uses the same name on them which they used to give to the Gentiles– "dogs!" He calls them "evil workers" because they misled the people, deceived them and perverted the gospel of Christ. "Beware of the circumcisers" (those who mutilate the flesh for sanctifying purposes). Circumcision served its day as a token of the covenant and may be recommended as a hygienic measure, but it has no place or meaning in the covenant of grace.

(Vs. 3.) "We are the true circumcision, not they. They have the name, the form, the outward sign. We have in Christ and in the new birth its fulfillment". It is the difference between having the lamb of the Old Testament sacrifice and having Christ, the Lamb of God.

(Vs. .4.) Paul illustrates the point using himself: "If there is any value in our family ties, ceremonies, religious works and performances, outward obedience to law and rites, I have more room to boast than any of these false teachers."

(Vs. 5, 6.) Paul was circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel (not an Ishmaelite or a proselyte, but a natural Israelite), of the tribe of Benjamin (this tribe was from Jacob and Rachel and kept true worship when ten revolted), had a Hebrew mother and a Hebrew father, was a Pharisee (the strictest sect of the Jews, held in highest esteem), persecuted the church, and with respect to the observance of the outward law, was blameless.

(Vs. 7.) At one time he felt that all these things were necessary for acceptance with God, were necessary for righteousness and entitled him to the favour of God. When God revealed Christ to him, he saw all these things to be worthless in themselves. Christ is our sacrifice, our sanctification and our righteousness. He is the fulfilment of all these. That which was everything to Paul became nothing; Christ became everything (Col. 3:11).

(Vs. 8.) "Furthermore, I count everything as loss compared to that priceless privilege (that overwhelming advantage) of knowing Christ Jesus, my Lord. For his sake I lost everything in order that I may have Christ, the Redeemer."

(Vs. 9-11.) This is my determined purpose, my one desire, my soul and heart's sincere hope, which is threefold:

Henry Mahan is pastor of
Thirteenth Street Baptist Church
Ashland, Ky.