Rob Elphick
child of God / husband / father / Canberra, AU
User since 2011
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Paul draws attention to concepts that will be important in the letter: e.g. one's identity as a servant of God
Titus 1:1-4
Paul disciplined himself to treasure the gospel that he would share in it. The exodus fathers provided examples of turning from God.
1 Corinthians 9:23-27
We now look to Him who has made us whole, and become more like Him. We are invited into the wholeness of which David speaks.
Psalms 15:1-5
Love is shown through diligence in managing your own affairs.
1 Thessalonians 4:9-12
Do not be distressed. You will be with Jesus. You know him, and so you know the way to the Father, and you know the Father.
John 14:1-7
David's hope is based on God's commitment to His own name.
Psalms 25:1-22
The Father and the Son ... at work to bring healing, life, and fellowship.
John 5:1-47
Let us go on to maturity, knowing that God's purposes, for his children's good, are secured in Jesus.
Hebrews 5:11-6:3
We have the opportunity to provide our brothers and sisters with a service of eternal value. We do so by reflecting the heart of God.
James 5:19-20
Beware of placing your confidence in wealth. Beware of abusing others in pursuing wealth. If you're in this boat, weep.
James 5:1-6
God alone is the lawgiver and assessor, and he alone can save and destroy. I am in no position to cast a verdict on my brother, so don't.
James 4:11-12
In the midst of my waywardness, God's grace abounds. It is a grace that calls for active, sincere submission, and single-minded devotion.
James 4:1-10
The prayer of the downcast: for God's light and truth to lead him back into communion with God. Meanwhile, he has resolved to hope in God.
Psalms 42-43
The gospel is worth our focus. Exalt in the excellent; avoid the worthless. Be fair and decisive with those who stir for division.
Titus 3:9-11
Through God's mercy in Christ, Christians are heirs of eternal life, and in need of reminding about how this should affect their behaviour.
Titus 3:1-8
Let our tongues yield the fruit of God's mighty redeeming work. It makes no sense for corrupt words to flow out of a renewed heart.
James 3:5-12
Spiritual maturity means appreciating and chosing what is truly good.
Hebrews 5:11-14
Hold Christ the King as first place in your heart. Hold him as your hope, and when people want to know more, be ready to gently explain.
1 Peter 3:13-16
What does a well-ordered life look like? It is devoted to the Lord, undistracted ... and knows time is short.
1 Corinthians 7:26-35
How can we be free from anxieties? Be anxious about one thing - how to please the Lord.
1 Corinthians 7:26-35
The time remaining is short so live as though undistracted, including in relation to marriage.
1 Corinthians 7:26-31
Look at Jesus. In Him, we are brothers and sisters with God's people of old.
Hebrews 3:1-6
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Not that I have already obtained ...
Philippians 3:12-4:1
One thing, two things: forgetting what's behind, and straining for what is ahead, for the full and final experience of God in Christ Jesus.
Published June 2nd, 2021
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Main point summary
Main point summary
Think this way, because many pursue earthly things, but you belong to heaven.
Philippians 3:12-4:1
Not that I have already l obtained this
Not that I have already attained this -
Not that I have already a obtained it or have already b become perfect, but I press on 1 so that I may c lay hold of that 2 for which also I d was laid hold of by e Christ Jesus.
I have not already attained this goal - a total and final experience of Christ,
or m am already perfect,
that is, I have not already been perfected -
that is, I have not already been perfected (obtained a perfect experience of fellowship with Christ)
but I press on to make it my own,
but I strive to lay hold of that
but I pursue a perfect experience of fellowship with Christ, to make it mine,
because Christ Jesus has made me his own.
for which Christ Jesus also laid hold of me. 18
because Christ Jesus has made me his own
Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own.
Brothers and sisters, 19 I do not consider myself to have attained this.
Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: a forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,
I say again , my brothers (I'm with you in this), I do not think as though I have arrived - I know I have not yet attained the goal
But one thing I do:
Instead I am single-minded: 20
but one thing, one thing I do
n forgetting what lies behind
Forgetting the things that are behind
that is, by (a) no longer caring for the past [not measuring my own deeds]
and straining forward to what lies ahead,
and reaching out for the things that are ahead,
and (b) reaching out, running forward, to the things that lie ahead,
I press on toward the goal
with this goal in mind, 21
I a press on toward the goal for the prize of the b upward call of God in c Christ Jesus.
I move forward with purpose with eyes on the goal
for o the prize of the upward p call of God in Christ Jesus.
I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God 22 in Christ Jesus.
for the prize of a call to a perfect experience of friendship with God in Christ Jesus.
Let those of us who are q mature think this way,
Therefore let those of us who are “perfect” embrace this point of view. 23
Let us therefore, as many as are 1 a perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a b different attitude, c God will reveal that also to you;
Now then, let those of us who are mature (no longer spiritual infants) have this mindset
and if in anything r you think otherwise,
If you think otherwise,
and if you're not yet seeing it this way - e.g. not yet fully sharing this insight - that is, if in anything you are thinking otherwise
s God will reveal that also to you.
God will reveal to you the error of your ways. 24
then God will also reveal that to you, help you to get it.
Only t let us hold true to what we have attained.
Nevertheless, let us live up to the standard 25 that we have already attained. 26
however, let us keep 1 a living by that same standard to which we have attained.
Nevertheless, let us live up to, a life worthy of, the calling and understanding we have received.
Brothers , u join in imitating me,
Be imitators of me, 27 brothers and sisters, 28
Brethren, a join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the b pattern you have in us.
Brothers and sisters, become fellow imitators (of Christ) with me
and keep your eyes on those who walk v according to the example you have in us.
and watch carefully those who are living this way, just as you have us as an example.
and look at the example of those who do likewise.
For w many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you x even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.
For many live, about whom I have often told you, and now, with tears, I tell you that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ.
For a many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even b weeping, that they are enemies of c the cross of Christ,
because many - I've spoken to you before of these people and do again now (with tears) - many live as enemies of the cross of Christ
y Their end is destruction,
Their end is destruction,
whose end is destruction, whose god is their 1 a appetite, and whose b glory is in their shame, who c set their minds on earthly things.
as a result their end is destruction.
z their god is their belly,
their god is the belly,
Their earthly desires are what drives them
and a they glory in their shame,
they exult in their shame,
and they love what is their shame.
with b minds set on earthly things.
and they think about earthly things. 29
Their minds are set on earthly things.
But c our citizenship is in heaven,
But our citizenship is in heaven -
For a our 1 citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly b wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;
But our identity is in heaven
and d from it we e await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,
and we also await a savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,
and we await a saviour from there, Jesus Christ the Lord
who will transform f our lowly body g to be like his glorious body,
who will transform these humble bodies of ours 30 into the likeness of his glorious body
who will a transform 1 the body of our humble state into b conformity with 2 the c body of His glory, d by the exertion of the power that He has even to e subject all things to Himself.
He will transform our lowly bodies to be like his glorious body
h by the power that enables him even i to subject all things to himself.
by means of that power by which he is able to subject all things to himself.
by the power that enables him to ruler over all things
Therefore, my brothers, 1 whom I love and j long for, k my joy and l crown, m stand firm thus in the Lord, my beloved.
So then, my brothers and sisters, 1 dear friends whom I long to see, my joy and crown, stand in the Lord in this way, my dear friends!
Therefore, my beloved brethren 1 whom I a long to see, my joy and crown, in this way b stand firm in the Lord, my beloved.
Therefore, brothers, stand firm in the Lord with this frame of thinking - brothers who are my joy and crown.
What is this (also 12c)? 3:8-11, especially verse 10, that I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death and so somehow to attain the resurrection from the dead. And so, to have a perfect experience of fellowship with Christ (10a). Obtained this = To be made perfect = obtained a perfect experience of fellowship with Christ
He presses on to make the experience of Christ his own because Jesus Christ has laid hold of him decisively.
Two aspects of the one thing : forgetting what lies behind [works of the flesh that were Paul's pride, he now calls loss (Phil 3:7)] and straining forward to what lies ahead [the resurrection, the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:17)].
Paul wants them to know that he has NOT arrived, he has NOT yet made it his own. But he presses on ... one thing: forgetting ... , straining ... , I press on.
What is this upward call? A heavenly calling, a resurrection from the dead - Heb 3:1, Phil 3:11 It is ours in Christ by faith - Phil 3:9 Is it sure? Yes, Phil 1:6, Rom 8:30, Rom 11:29
What does mature mean in the NT? Matt 5:48 - perfection 1 Cor 13:9-11 - a man as compared to a child 1 Cor 14:20 - a man as compared to a child Heb 5:12-14 - affections have learned to discern Phil 3 context meaning Phil 3:12 - I am not: perfected (sinless perfection) Phil 3:15 - I am: mature, no longer a child, no longer inexperienced in spiritual life, faculties of discenment have grown up to experience spiritual affections
What does 'think' this way mean? Phil 1:7 - feel this way, ie not just rational, but a mindset Phil 2:2 (x2) Phil 2:5-8 - have this mind ... though in the form of God he did not consider equality with God a thing to be grasped. He was willing to die. Phil 3:15 (x2) Phil 3:19 Phil 4:2 Phil 4:10 (x2) What does think 'this way' mean? Phil 3:8-10 a desire to know him, to know the power of his resurrection, to share in his sufferings , becoming like him in his death, to obtain the resurrection from the dead Phil 3:12-14 a humble recognition, that I have not yet obtained this, I am not yet perfect, but I strive to obtain it. Examples; Timothy (Phil 2:19-21) and Epaphroditus (Phil 2:29-30)
There are things we don't yet know or desire as we ought, but let us live in a way that reflects what we do know.
Why does Paul mention both? Is this like in Matthew where Jesus says 'do not be anxious, but seek first his kingdom'.
Hebrews 12:1-2
These verses give reasons for verse 17. Verse 17: follow my example, and watch others who follow my example. Run after me, and watch others who run after me. Reason: (1) many walk as enemies of the cross of Christ (the suffering unit death of Christ), (2) our real home is in heaven and as a result we wait for a saviour from there.
Why does Paul add these verses on, noting he could have stopped at end of verse 20?
Disclaimer: The opinions and conclusions expressed on this page are those of the author and may or may not accord with the positions of Biblearc or Bethlehem College & Seminary.