Last week at Rooted we had a great time digging deeper into Philippians 3. I would like to take the time to recap some of the major points that we learned (vs. 1-9):
- Paul is writing this portion in response to Jewish believers who were insisting that Gentile believers became Jewish (in tradition and practice).
- Paul’s point is that none of this really matters (your past). As long as your faith is in Christ you will experience a joy and life more fulfilling than any earthly achievement or prize. Your resume blends into insignificance when you have a relationship with Jesus.
- Therefore Paul exhorts us to focus our attention on what lies before us, straining to stay focused on Jesus – because only in Christ can we experience true fullness.
What was cool is that we unpacked some of what it means to have faith. Here were some of the important things talked about (vs. 10-16):
- Faith in Christ means that we become Righteous in the sight of God, we become children of God, our Father.
- Faith will cost us. Suffering plays an important role in our life of faith. It’s an opportunity to grow closer to God and become holy (as God is more concerned about your holiness than you happiness – although when you seek holiness, you’ll find true happiness).
- Faith is not a destination, it’s a journey of refinement and discovery.
- Authentic faith is not based on circumstance. It trusts in Jesus even when things are bad.
- It requires repentance (turning away from sin, turning towards Jesus). It is not an emotion, it is an action.
- Faith is active – we must put our faith into practice.
We also then looked at some things which can de-rail our faith (vs. 17-21):
- We can become lazy, take our eyes off the prize and glory in the past. We can stop working out our faith with fear and trembling, and become passive.
- We can set our minds on earthly things, and glory in earthly achievement.
- We don’t have role models to follow. People who KNOW us and will help us become Christlike. We live in secret and don’t allow older, more mature, Christians access into our lives.
- We lose sight of the ultimate prize – that our name is written in the Book of Life and we shall inherit eternal life forever.
These were the challenges we set out for ourselves this coming week:
- What earthly things do I need to take my focus on, so I can place it on Jesus? Write these down.
- What possible things could potentially derail my faith? Write these down.
Share this with you LGL (life Group Leader) or peers who can help you stay focused.