Righteousness through Faith
1Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you.
2Watch out for those dogs, those workers of evil, those mutilators of the flesh!
3For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh—
4though I myself could have such confidence.
If anyone else thinks he has grounds for confidence in the flesh, I have more:
5circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin; a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee;
6as to zeal, persecuting the church; as to righteousness under the Law, faultless.
Knowing Christ Above All Else
7But whatever was an asset to me, I count as loss for the sake of Christ.
8More than that, I count all things as loss compared to the surpassing excellence of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ
9and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God on the basis of faith.
10I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to Him in His death,
11so that I may somehow attain to the resurrection from the dead.
Pressing Toward the Goal
12Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been perfected, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.
13Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have laid hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,
14I press on toward the goal to win the prize of God’s heavenly calling in Christ Jesus.
15All of us who are mature should embrace this point of view. And if you think differently about some issue, God will reveal this to you as well.
16Nevertheless, we must live up to what we have already attained.
Citizenship in Heaven
17Join one another in following my example, brothers, and carefully observe those who live according to the pattern we set for you.
18For as I have often told you before, and now declare even with tears: Many live as enemies of the cross of Christ.
19Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and their glory is in their shame. Their minds are set on earthly things.
20But our citizenship is in heaven, and we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,
21who, by the power that enables Him to subject all things to Himself, will transform our lowly bodies to be like His glorious body.