I have often had people ask me, what is your favorite book in the Bible, in which I try to say, well the Bible. After all it is a book! haha! But if I play by the rules I typically will answer with Philippians. I don’t know if it is because it agrees so much with my personality or what, but Philippians has always stuck out in my mind. It has been a book that has spoken clearly to me on several occasions and one that I found extremely encouraging during my 5 week stay in Istanbul.
One passage that came to mind to me this morning was Philippians 3:12-16. When Paul mentions that he has not already obtained this, he is talking about the resurrection from the dead, the new bodies that we receive. Notice in verse 12 what Paul is saying, he presses on because Christ has made Him his own. We press on in the faith because Christ has redeemed us, Christ loves us, he has adopted us as sons and heirs to the kingdom! So naturally Paul moves to the next verse in 13 to forget what is behind, why? Because Christ has forgiven it, Christ has covered it! We move on, we press on toward Christ because we do not have to worry about the past mistakes we have. Last week when I talked about Legalism I mentioned that the one and only thing we bring to the table in concerns to our salvation is our sin, Christ is the redeemer and the only way.
So what is the upward call? What is it that you are striving to be? To be imitators of Christ, lovers of Christ, witnesses to the resurrection power of Christ. We press on to live in unity, to love as Christ loved, to live in obedience as Christ has commanded. Friends, I pray that God will give you a Spirit of tenacity to forget what is behind, moving on, pressing forward to live in a manner that Christ has called you. Remember that through Christ we are redeemed and forgiven therefore we can forget what is behind and by the power of the resurrected Christ and press on.
Take a moment to ask God to give you that attitude. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Spend some time in the rest of the chapter.