Philippians 3:2
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Watch out for those dogs, those evildoers, those mutilators of the flesh.

New Living Translation
Watch out for those dogs, those people who do evil, those mutilators who say you must be circumcised to be saved.

English Standard Version
Look out for the dogs, look out for the evildoers, look out for those who mutilate the flesh.

New American Standard Bible
Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision;

King James Bible
Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Watch out for "dogs," watch out for evil workers, watch out for those who mutilate the flesh.

International Standard Version
Beware of the dogs! Beware of the evil workers! Beware of the mutilators!

NET Bible
Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of those who mutilate the flesh!

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Beware of dogs; beware of evildoers; beware of the circumcisers.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Beware of dogs! Beware of those who do evil things. Beware of those who insist on circumcision.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.

King James 2000 Bible
Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilators.

American King James Version
Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.

American Standard Version
Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the concision:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.

Darby Bible Translation
See to dogs, see to evil workmen, see to the concision.

English Revised Version
Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the concision:

Webster's Bible Translation
Beware of dogs, beware of evil-workers, beware of the concision.

Weymouth New Testament
Beware of 'the dogs,' the bad workmen, the self-mutilators.

World English Bible
Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision.

Young's Literal Translation
look to the dogs, look to the evil-workers, look to the concision;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

3:1-11 Sincere Christians rejoice in Christ Jesus. The prophet calls the false prophets dumb dogs, Isa 56:10; to which the apostle seems to refer. Dogs, for their malice against faithful professors of the gospel of Christ, barking at them and biting them. They urged human works in opposition to the faith of Christ; but Paul calls them evil-workers. He calls them the concision; as they rent the church of Christ, and cut it to pieces. The work of religion is to no purpose, unless the heart is in it, and we must worship God in the strength and grace of the Divine Spirit. They rejoice in Christ Jesus, not in mere outward enjoyments and performances. Nor can we too earnestly guard against those who oppose or abuse the doctrine of free salvation. If the apostle would have gloried and trusted in the flesh, he had as much cause as any man. But the things which he counted gain while a Pharisee, and had reckoned up, those he counted loss for Christ. The apostle did not persuade them to do any thing but what he himself did; or to venture on any thing but that on which he himself ventured his never-dying soul. He deemed all these things to be but loss, compared with the knowledge of Christ, by faith in his person and salvation. He speaks of all worldly enjoyments and outward privileges which sought a place with Christ in his heart, or could pretend to any merit and desert, and counted them but loss; but it might be said, It is easy to say so; but what would he do when he came to the trial? He had suffered the loss of all for the privileges of a Christian. Nay, he not only counted them loss, but the vilest refuse, offals thrown to dogs; not only less valuable than Christ, but in the highest degree contemptible, when set up as against him. True knowledge of Christ alters and changes men, their judgments and manners, and makes them as if made again anew. The believer prefers Christ, knowing that it is better for us to be without all worldly riches, than without Christ and his word. Let us see what the apostle resolved to cleave to, and that was Christ and heaven. We are undone, without righteousness wherein to appear before God, for we are guilty. There is a righteousness provided for us in Jesus Christ, and it is a complete and perfect righteousness. None can have benefit by it, who trust in themselves. Faith is the appointed means of applying the saving benefit. It is by faith in Christ's blood. We are made conformable to Christ's death, when we die to sin, as he died for sin; and the world is crucified to us, and we to the world, by the cross of Christ. The apostle was willing to do or to suffer any thing, to attain the glorious resurrection of saints. This hope and prospect carried him through all difficulties in his work. He did not hope to attain it through his own merit and righteousness, but through the merit and righteousness of Jesus Christ.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 2. - Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision. The connection is, as given in ver. 3, Rejoice in the Lord, not in the flesh; have confidence in him, not in the ceremonies of the Jewish Law. Compare the same contrast in Galatians 6:13, 14. There is certainly something abrupt in the sudden introduction of this polemic against Judaizing, especially in writing to Philippi, where there were not many Jews. But there may have been circumstances, unknown to us, which made the warning necessary; or, as some think, the apostle may have written this under excitement caused by the violent opposition of the Jewish faction at Rome. Beware; literally, mark, observe them, to be on your guard against them. The dogs. The article must be retained in the translation. The Jews called the Gentiles "dogs" (comp. Matthew 15:26, 27; Revelation 22:15), i.e. unclean, mainly because of their disregard of the distinction between clean and unclean food. St. Paul retorts the epithet: they are the dogs, who have confidence in the flesh, not in spiritual religion. Evil workers; so 2 Corinthians 11:13, where he calls them "deceitful workers." The Judaizers were active enough, like the Pharisees who "compassed sea and land to make one proselyte;" but their activity sprang from bad motives - they were evil workers, though their work was sometimes overruled for good (comp. Philippians 1:15-18). The concision (κατατομή, cutting, mutilation); a contemptuous word for "circumcision" (περιτομή). Compare the Jewish contemptuous use of Isbosheth, man of shame, for Eshbaal, man of Baal, etc. Their circumcision is no better than a mutilation. Observe the paronomasia, the combination of like-sounding words, which is common in St. Paul's Epistles. Winer gives many examples in sect. lxviii.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Beware of dogs,.... By whom are meant the "judaizing" teachers, who were for imposing the works and ceremonies of the law upon the Gentiles, as necessary to salvation; and they have the name retorted on them they used to give to the Gentiles; see Matthew 15:26; nor should they think it too severe, since the Jews themselves say (p),

"the face of that generation (in which the Messiah shall come) shall he, , "as the face of a dog".

The apostle calls them so, because they returned to Judaism, as the dog to its vomit, 2 Peter 2:22; and because of the uncleanness in which many of them lived, and the impudence they were guilty of in transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ, and putting themselves upon an equal foot with them; as also for their calumny and detraction, their wrangling with the apostles, snarling at their doctrines, and biting them with the devouring words of reproach and scandal: likewise, they may be styled dogs for their covetousness, being such greedy ones as in Isaiah 56:10, with feigned words making merchandise of men; and for their love of their, bellies, which they served, and not Christ, and made a god of, Philippians 3:19. Moreover, because they were without, as dogs are, Revelation 22:15; having gone out from the communion of the saints, because they were not of them; or if among them, yet not true members of Christ, nor of his mystical body; all which are so many arguments why the saints should beware of them, and why their persons, conversation, and doctrine should be avoided,

Beware of evil workers: meaning the same persons, who were deceitful workers, did the work of the Lord unfaithfully, walked in craftiness, and handled the word of God deceitfully, endeavoured to subvert the Gospel of Christ, and the faith of men in it; who worked from bad principles, and with evil views; and notwithstanding their large pretensions to good works, teaching that justification and salvation were by them, which notion the apostle tacitly refers to in this character; yet were of bad a character, and such as Christ will reject another day as workers of iniquity; a character they deservedly bear, if there was no other reason for it than their preaching the doctrine of salvation by men's own works of righteousness, and who, and their ministry, are by all means to be shunned,

Beware of the concision; the men of the circumcision, as the Arabic version renders it; they chose to be called so, but the apostle would not give them that name, but calls them the "concision"; or "the concision of the flesh", as the Syriac version renders it; referring either to the cuttings in the flesh, forbidden Leviticus 21:5; or to the circumcision of the flesh rather, which they valued themselves upon, and were for introducing among the Gentiles, whereby they made sad divisions, and cutting work among the churches; and were some of them at least "cut" off, as the Ethiopic version renders it, from the churches; and who, as much as in them lay, cut themselves off from Christ, and rendered him unprofitable to them; see Galatians 5:2.

(p) Misn. Sota, c. 9. sect. 15.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

2. Beware—Greek, "Have your eye on" so as to beware of. Contrast "mark," or "observe," namely, so as to follow Php 3:17.

dogs—Greek, "the dogs," namely, those impure persons "of whom I have told you often" (Php 3:18, 19); "the abominable" (compare Re 21:8, with Re 22:15; Mt 7:6; Tit 1:15, 16): "dogs" in filthiness, unchastity, and snarling (De 23:18; Ps 59:6, 14, 15; 2Pe 2:22): especially "enemies of the cross of Christ" (Php 3:18; Ps 22:16, 20). The Jews regarded the Gentiles as "dogs" (Mt 15:26); but by their own unbelief they have ceased to be the true Israel, and are become "dogs" (compare Isa 56:10, 11).

evil workers—(2Co 11:13), "deceitful workers." Not simply "evildoers" are meant, but men who "worked," indeed, ostensibly for the Gospel, but worked for evil: "serving not our Lord, but their own belly" (Php 3:19; compare Ro 16:18). Translate, "The evil workmen," that is, bad teachers (compare 2Ti 2:15).

concision—Circumcision had now lost its spiritual significance, and was now become to those who rested on it as any ground of justification, a senseless mutilation. Christians have the only true circumcision, namely, that of the heart; legalists have only "concision," that is, the cutting off of the flesh. To make "cuttings in the flesh" was expressly prohibited by the law (Le 21:5): it was a Gentile-heathenish practice (1Ki 18:28); yet this, writes Paul indignantly, is what these legalists are virtually doing in violation of the law. There is a remarkable gradation, says Birks [Horæ Apostolicæ] in Paul's language as to circumcision. In his first recorded discourse (Ac 13:39), circumcision is not named, but implied as included in the law of Moses which cannot justify. Six or seven years later, in the Epistle to Galatians (Ga 3:3), the first Epistle in which it is named, its spiritual inefficiency is maintained against those Gentiles who, beginning in the Spirit, thought to be perfected in the flesh. Later, in Epistle to Romans (Ro 2:28, 29), he goes farther, and claims the substance of it for every believer, assigning the shadow only of it to the unbelieving Jew. In Epistle to Colossians (Col 2:11; 3:11), still later, he expounds more fully the true circumcision as the exclusive privilege of the believer. Last of all here, the very name is denied to the legalist, and a term of reproach is substituted, "concision," or flesh-cutting. Once obligatory on all the covenant-people, then reduced to a mere national distinction, it was more and more associated in the apostle's experience with the open hostility of the Jews, and the perverse teaching of false brethren.

Philippians 3:2 Additional Commentaries
Context
Righteousness through Faith
1Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you. 2Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision; 3for we are the true circumcision, who worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh,…
Cross References
Psalm 22:16
Dogs surround me, a pack of villains encircles me; they pierce my hands and my feet.

Psalm 22:20
Deliver me from the sword, my precious life from the power of the dogs.

2 Corinthians 11:13
For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ.

Galatians 5:15
If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.

Revelation 22:15
Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.
Treasury of Scripture

Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.

of dogs.

Proverbs 26:11 As a dog returns to his vomit, so a fool returns to his folly.

Isaiah 56:10,11 His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb …

Matthew 7:6,15 Give not that which is holy to the dogs, neither cast you your pearls …

Matthew 24:10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and …

Galatians 5:15 But if you bite and devour one another, take heed that you be not …

2 Timothy 4:14,15 Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according …

2 Peter 2:22 But it is happened to them according to the true proverb, The dog …

Revelation 22:15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and fornicators, and murderers, …

evil.

Philippians 3:19 Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory …

Psalm 119:115 Depart from me, you evildoers: for I will keep the commandments of my God.

Matthew 7:22,23 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied …

2 Corinthians 11:13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves …

Galatians 5:13 For, brothers, you have been called to liberty; only use not liberty …

1 Timothy 1:19 Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away …

2 Timothy 3:1-6 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come…

2 Timothy 4:3,4 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; …

Titus 1:16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being …

2 Peter 2:18-20 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through …

Jude 1:4,10-13 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old …

Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, …

the.

Philippians 3:3 For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and …

Romans 2:28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, …

Galatians 2:3,4 But neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled …

Galatians 5:1-3,6 Stand fast therefore in the liberty with which Christ has made us …

Revelation 2:9 I know your works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but you are rich) …

Revelation 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they …

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