Sunday 23rd January 2011 – Pastor Mark Ballosingh

Philippians 3 7-10 7But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss forChrist. 8Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 9And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

We become eternal winners by losing some things in the natural realm, when we pray and fast our relationship with God becomes clearer and stronger and those things which we need to lose becomes known to us. As we look at our natural, carnal life and come to the altar and bind those things, God will move us to the next level.

The theme of book of Philippians is Joy and is mentioned 36 times, it is a letter of glad tidings to the church of Philippi, the 1st established church. Paul would be preaching and come to Philippi where Lydia (a merchant of purple cloth) will open her heart to his teachings and be saved. It was a place where there were more Romans then Jews and the Romans did not have a place for the Jews to worship so Lydia would open her home for Paul to continue his preachings and the church of Philippi would be established.

The book speaks to the joy of the believer and in the scripture, Paul takes us to a higher place where he speaks about gaining things in the spiritual realm, Paul uses himself as an example….Paul was a Jew from the tribe of Benjamin, born to a tribe beloved by God as the tabernacle of God was placed in the tribe of Benjamin, laid at the feet of Gamaliel.

Paul had a good grounded education, he came from a good legacy, he had a good reputation and background, he had everything in the natural that would make him acceptable by the world’s standards BUT he lacked in the spiritual life and was far from God. 2 Timothy 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Beloved know that we may have a Bachelor’s, we may be driving an expensive car, we may live in a big house and have a lot of money in the bank but all these proficiencies in the natural count as nothing before God.

Paul felt he was righteous because he studied the law and obeyed the law but the Bible says in Isaiah 64:6“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”

God was not interested in Paul’s culture and self taught attitude, He was interested in Paul coming to know Him, for Paul to come up to a next level in knowing God.

In order to gain in God we must lose……There are many things that hinder us from getting where God wants us to be:-
1) Self – our self accomplishments, we must surrender self in order to get to the next level in our spiritual lives. To know who we truly are in Christ, we must come to that place where we can surrender self
2) Indiscipline – indiscipline would never get you into the presence of God. It took discipline for the children of Israel to come into God’s presence.
3) Inability to look to Christ – the author and finisher of our Faith. “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.
4) Inability to develop our relationship with God and the inability to be confident in our approach to God. We as the children of God have the privilege to approach the throne of grace and cry “Abba Father” and we can only develop that level of confidence from walking and talking with God. If you do not have a personal relationship with God and lack the ability to know the will of God, you will be lost.
5) Inability to read the Word of God.

In order to gain we must:-
1) Subdue the flesh
2) Lose habit of placing our trust and looking to man in our times of need
3) Lose our non-approach in developing our relationship with God….we need to lose the attitude of only coming to God when trouble comes – “no famine, peril will separate me from the will of God. Each day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before.

When we pray, we must ask God to help us let go off these self righteous attitudes, when we come to God we must come to Him with the innocence of a little child, knowing nothing :all that I know I count as dung….It is important to understand what was considered dung – it was the intestines which were cleaned out from inside an animal and thrown out for the dogs…….we must understand that all we have in the natural is considered as dung in the eyes of God, as those things wouldn’t bring us closer to Him, we must lose it in order to gain.

Lose – the account of Paul the missionary going to Canada to preach but when they were out at sea they got into difficulties and the only thing that could save them was to throw the heavy merchandise overboard…this is what is meant by lose – throwing the heavy weight overboard to survive.

1) Be found knowing in Christ – “to be in Christ” Christ in me is one thing (Salvation) but me in Christ is another (development of my relationship with Him)
2) I will know Christ – speaks about faith, we cannot see Him but we have Faith knowing He is the true and living God. Great Faith begets great things, small faith begets small things.In order to know Christ we must have Faith to understand Him…….I will rejoice in the fellowship of His suffering, when you go through the battling and bruising, it is a shared experience with Christ who suffered and was bruised for our transgressions and iniquity.
3) To share in the Power of His Resurrection – for when you lose for Christ’s sake you gain the eternal promise of everlasting life” when this body goes to the grave….the dead in Christ shall rise”
When you lose for Christ, He will reward you in the spiritual realm. During prayer and fast we bring flesh and self under the subjection of the Blood, we throw it overboard……we are nothing to be something in Christ.

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