There was a time when I thought I was securing my spot in heaven. Not in my church going or tithe paying or Sunday serving. I mean, doesn’t every “good” Christian do that?
My boast was, I thought, bigger. I was serving the Lord in full-time vocational ministry, sharing the gospel with others, and not kissing my boyfriend until our wedding day. You know, the big stuff.
If there was a shirt that read “Super Christian,” I would wear it — as an undershirt, of course, because I’m also humble.
These thoughts and lies were not bold, but subtle, until one day I looked up and wondered how I had gotten to such a works-based faith, thinking that when I stand before God I can show Him my resume and the pearly gates would just fling open.
Time, struggles in my faith, and hearing the gospel continued to open my eyes to the truth of the real ospel and revealed the lies I had grown to believe.
This is why Paul was, once again, reminding the Philippians to “Rejoice in the Lord!” and not in their own righteousness. He wanted them to be urgently aware of those who try to convince them otherwise by adding on to the gospel.
The way to recognize a counterfeit is to know the original so well that you can tell when something is off.
So Paul reminded them once again of who they are.
“For we are all the circumcision who worship by the spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the Flesh.” (Philippians 3:3)
Yes, we are the circumcision, brought in by Christ Himself; not because we earned it, but by faith. We are born into a family where we do not work for our own praise but solely for the glory of Christ alone, because everything we have and can do was given to us by Him anyway. So let’s put our confidence, not in the work of the flesh, but only in the work of Christ.
It would do us well to continue to remind ourselves of this truth and not let our ears or hearts grow numb of hearing it . . .
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (Ephesian 2:8-9)
Rehearsing this truth — letting it sink deep down and never thinking we’ve outgrown it — is the way to know the genuine, original truth of the gospel. So that when someone tries to lead you astray, even if that someone is you, you can recognize the counterfeit.
Today: Read Philippians 3:1-3