Philippians 3

The Apostle's high Ambition

For the rest, my friends, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write this to you, but safe for yourselves.

Beware of the cynics; beware of those men of foul life; beware of the concision. For we are the circumcision, who worship through a Divine Spirit, and exult in Christ Jesus, and do not place confidence in an external appearance; although I might also have confidence in an external appearance. If any think well to trust in an appearance, I can much more: in eighth-day circumcision, of the race of Israel, tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; regarding ritual, a Pharisee; as to zeal, persecuting the Church; being blameless in a righteousness which is contained in ritual.

But what might have been a gain to me, that I considered a loss for Christ. Nay, further; I also consider them all to be a loss, compared to the possession of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: by which I lost everything, and consider it to be refuse if I can gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not possessing my ritualistic righteousness, but that through the faith of Christ, the righteousness from God by the faith; so as to know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the association with His sufferings, being assimilated to His death--so that in any way I may attain to the resurrection that is from the dead. Not that I have now attained it, or am now perfected: but I ran so that I might carry it off; and I was also laid hold of by Christ. Brothers, I do not consider myself to have won it; but one thing, forgetting the past, and straining to those in front, I rush along the track for the prize of the supreme call of God in Christ Jesus. As many of us therefore who are perfect, let us have this before us; and if you put anything else before you, may God reveal this to you. Beyond what we have attained to--let us go straight to that.

Become my imitators, brethren, and look out those who walk thus, as you have our model; for many conduct themselves--of whom I have often spoken to you, but now I say it weeping--as enemies of the cross of Christ: whose end is perdition, whose god their sensuality, and their boast in their shame; they think of what is upon earth. But our policy consists in possessing an object in heaven: from where also we expect a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who will transform the body of our humility, making it like the body of His majesty, by the internal working of His power; and He will subject all to Himself.