Philippians 3:1-9 Treasures From the Book of Philippians Intro: The church at Philippi was a faithful and flourishing church. Paul knew that there were those who would attempt to hinder the worship and the work. Paul writes to encourage the church to remain steadfast. Philippians 3:  Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe. 1. Rejoice in The Lord 1 Paul writes "Finally, my brethren" which is a transitional phrase which renders the thought "in addition." Paul is sending Epaphroditus to Philippi to encourage the church and will soon send Timothy. Paul does not want the church to worry about him in a Roman prison. Paul wants the church to rejoice. The church has been born of the same birth channel as Paul and are his "brethren" in the Lord. Paul says I am writing to you over and over again about rejoicing. Nehemiah 8:10 "The joy of the Lord is your strength." Paul also means that he is writing to them things he has taught them previously. Paul says "it is not grievous for me to remind you" and it is "for you it is safe." It is good for us to be reminded of the same truths we have heard before. Philippians 3:  Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision. 2. Resist The Enemy 2 Paul reminds the church of the many enemies that would attempt to hinder the church. Not all hindrances come from persecution, often times hindrances are borne of persuasion. Paul says there are some things the church must "beware." A. Devouring Dogs Isaiah 56:10-11 Dogs roamed the streets in Paul's day. They were scavengers and fed on refuse. Often times dogs were dangerous to children. They would bark at them and bite them. B. Devious Destroyers Paul says these "evil workers" cried out good works in opposition to faith in Christ. C. Devilish Deceivers Paul warned of the "concision" which were religious speakers that taught the keeping of the Law. These evil teachers taught that a man had to be circumcised to be saved. Philippians 3: For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. 3. Refrain From the Flesh 3 Paul says that the true "believers" are the circumcision, which is a spiritual circumcision. For the real believers worship God in the spirit. Real believers rejoice in Christ, in their relationship to Him and who He is to them. Real believers have no confidence in the flesh; which means they have no confidence in self. God's word teaches that we accepted in Christ not in the works of the flesh. Galations 6:15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. Philippians 3:  Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:  Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;  Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. 4. Relinquishing the Resume 4-6 Paul says if anybody could have confidence in the flesh, he could. Paul draws back the curtain and lets us see his credentials, his resume and religious achievements. Paul says if any other man thought he can trust the flesh, Paul says I could've trusted more. There were some things on Paul's resume that he could have had pride in. A. In Ritual Paul was circumcised on the 8th day. He was in a physical covenant relationship with God according to the Law. B. In Relationship Paul was of the stock of Israel, which we formerly knew as Jacob. Through his ancestry Paul could confidently boast that he was a direct descendent of Jacob. Paul was specifically of the tribe of Benjamin. Benjamin was the son of Jacob and his true love Rachel. Jacob renamed this boy Benjamin which means son of my right hand. In the tribe of Benjamin the temple stood. Paul was an Hebrew of the Hebrews. He was a pure Israelite on both his mother and his father's side. From one generation to another, his ancestors had retained the Hebrew language and rituals. C. In Religion Paul was a Pharisee. He was from the most elite keepers of the Law. He was taught by Gamaliel, an eminent doctor of the Law, Acts 22:3. Paul was a religious scholar. He was the son of a Pharisee, Acts 23:6. Paul was from the strictest sect of Pharisees, Acts 26:5. D. In Record Paul was zealous to be in the will of God. He believed that in persecuting the church he was doing the will of God. But Jesus said to Paul "why persecutest thou me?" E. In Righteousness Paul was blameless, free from fault ACCORDING TO THE LAW. But according to verse 7, Paul says "what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ." The things Paul thought were to his advantage were really good for nothing. Philippians 3:  But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.  Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,  And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 5. Realizing the Truth 7-9 Paul says "yea doubtless" or "yes indeed." Paul learned to count "all things" religious attainments or human works that many depend on as loss. Paul had learned that only faith in Christ brings salvation and satisfaction. That which is of "excellency" is the knowledge of Christ. Christ alone is worthy. A. Surrender Paul had surrendered or walked away from all things in order to win Christ. Paul says he now counts all things as "dung" which is waste. B. Satisfaction Paul learned this verse Isaiah 64:6 all out righteousnesses are as filthy rags. But through the faith of Christ there is righteousness * The Lamb of God Concl: Once there was a Father and son who were very close and enjoyed adding valuable art pieces to their collection. Priceless works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Monet and many others adorned the walls of the family estate. The widowed, elder man looked on with satisfaction as his only child became an experienced art collector. The son's trained eye and sharp business mind caused his father to beam with pride as they dealt with art collectors around the world. As winter approached, war engulfed the nation, and the young man left to serve his country. After only a few short weeks, his father received a telegram. His beloved son was missing in action. The art collector anxiously awaited more news, fearing he would never see his son again. Within days, his fears were confirmed. The young man had died while rushing a fellow soldier to a medic. Distraught and lonely, the old man faced the upcoming Christmas holiday with anguish and sadness. The joy of the season, a season that he and his son had so looked forward to, would visit his house no longer. On Christmas morning, a knock on the door awakened the depressed old man. As he walked to the door, the masterpieces of art on the walls only reminded him that his son was not coming home. As he opened the door, he was greeted by a soldier with a large package in his hand. He introduced himself to the man by saying, "I was a friend of your son. I was the one he was rescuing when he died. May I come in for a few moments? I have something to show you." As the two began to talk, the solider told of how the man's son had told everyone of his, not to mention his father's, love of fine art. "I'm an artist," said the soldier, "and I want to give you this." As the old man unwrapped the package, the paper gave way to reveal a portrait of the man's son. Though the world would never consider it the work of a genius, the painting featured the young man's face in striking detail. Overcome with emotion, the man thanked the soldier, promising to hang the picture above the fireplace. A few hours later, after the soldier had departed, the old man set about his task. True to his word, the painting went above the fireplace, pushing aside thousands of dollars of paintings. And then the man sat in his chair and spent Christmas gazing at the gift he had been given. During the days and weeks that followed, the man realized that even though his son was no longer with him, the boy's life would live on because of those he had touched. He would soon learn that his son had rescued dozens of wounded soldiers before a bullet stilled his caring heart. As the stories of his son's gallantry continued to reach him, fatherly pride and satisfaction began to ease the grief. The painting of his son soon became his most prized possession, far eclipsing any interest in the pieces for which museums around the world clamored. He told his neighbors it was the greatest gift he had ever received. The following spring, the old man became ill and passed away. The art world was in anticipation! Unmindful of the story of the man's only son, but in his honor; those paintings would be sold at an auction, according to the will of the old man, all of the art works would be auctioned on Christmas day, the day he had received his greatest gift. The day soon arrived and art collectors from around the world gathered to bid on some of the world's most spectacular paintings. Dreams would be fulfilled this day; greatness would be achieved as many would claim, "I have the greatest collection." The auction began with a painting that was not on any museum's list. It was the painting of the man's son. The auctioneer asked for an opening bid. The room was silent. "Who will open the bidding with $100?" he asked. Minutes passed. No one spoke. From the back of the room came, "Who cares about that painting? It's just a picture of his son. Let's forget it and go on to the good stuff." More voices echoed in agreement. "No, we have to sell this one first," replied the auctioneer. "Now, who will take the son?" Finally, a friend of the old man spoke. "Will you take ten dollars for the painting? That's all I have. I knew the boy, so I'd like to have it. I have ten dollars." "Will anyone go higher?" called the auctioneer. After more silence, the auctioneer said, "Going once, going twice. Gone." The gavel fell. Cheers filled the room and someone exclaimed, "Now we can get on with it and we can bid on these treasures!" The auctioneer looked at the audience and announced the auction was over. Stunned disbelief quieted the room. Someone spoke up and asked, "What do you mean it's over? We didn't come here for a picture of some old guy's son. What about all of these paintings? There are millions of dollars of art here! I demand that you explain what's going on here!." The auctioneer replied, "It's very simple. According to the will of the father, whoever takes the son . . . gets it all."