Devotion for Aug. 15 – Aug. 21 – Self-Denial
Think as you read:
How much should your goals, achievements, and social status influence your identity?
Read Philippians 3
Explore God’s Word
- Who and what does Paul warn the Philippians against (vv. 2-3)?
- What things could Paul place confidence in if he wanted to (vv. 4-6)?
- How do these things compare to knowing Christ (vv. 7-8)?
- What does Paul have confidence in (v. 9), and how has that affected what he wants (vv. 10-11)?
- In order to know Christ and share in his resurrection, what must Paul do (v. 13)?
- Does Paul expect everyone who is a Christian to feel the same way (v. 15-16)?
- Who should people that share Paul’s feelings look to for help (v. 17), and what should be their ultimate focus (vv. 20-21)?
Apply God’s Word
- Do you know people that put too much emphasis on material things and personal accomplishments? How does associating with them affect your spiritual life?
- What things do you have to be proud of? How do you keep from becoming too proud?
- Paul’s desire to know Christ was so strong that he compared everything else to “rubbish” (King James captures this truth the best when it translates this word as “dung”). Do find this statement to be extreme or over the top?
- If so, how do you reconcile Paul’s claim that all who are “mature” (v. 15) should have this view?
- What priorities might you need to “forget” in order to strain “toward what is ahead (v. 13)?”
Respond in PrayerThank God for who you are, what you have, and what he’s allowed you to do. Ask for his help and conviction to give up any of this that takes away from your relationship with Jesus.