Last Updated on December 22, 2022 by GMC
If anyone else thinks he can be confident in flesh, all the more can I. Circumcised on the eighth day, of the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrew parentage, in observance of the law a Pharisee, in zeal I persecuted the church, in righteousness based on the law I was blameless.Philippians 3:4b-11
But whatever gains I had, these I have come to consider a loss because of Christ. More than that, I even consider everything as a loss because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have accepted the loss of all things and I consider them so much rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having any righteousness of my own based on the law but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God, depending on faith to know him and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by being conformed to his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
I consider all things so much rubbish that I may gain Christ and be found in him. Gospel Acclamation from Philippians 3:8-9
Christ Transforms Our Vision
In finding Christ, Paul found everything. Even his Jewish pedigree and Pharisaic privilege dwindled into insignificance before the Lord Jesus Christ. With scales fallen from his eyes, Paul saw that all earthly gains were but rubbish (skubalon: refuse, dregs, dung). The Greek word Paul uses is derived from kuón (dog) and balló (cast, throw). Skubalon is filthy scraps of garbage thrown to unclean dogs.
Christ and the Canaanite Woman
Paul’s imagery recalls the Canaanite woman whom Jesus encountered in Tyre and Sidon. Jesus praised the foreigner for her faith when she made the request: “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters” (Matthew 15:27; Mark 7:28). By identifying with the unclean “dogs,” the woman abased herself exceedingly to obtain the Lord’s favor. Enlightened by Christ, Paul entered into solidarity with the Gentiles by considering his own Jewish privilege nothing but skubalon.
For Christ’s sake, I accept the loss
Of all things that are but dross.
The Canaanite Woman’s Faith
The Hound of Heaven and the Puppies
Related to the Gospel of the Day:
The Son of Man Has Nowhere to Lay His Head
Plowing to Paradise