Righteousness through Faith in Christ
1 Finally, 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.
2 Watch out for those dogs, those workers of evil, those mutilators of the flesh! 3 For 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— 4 though I myself could have such confidence.
If anyone else thinks he has grounds for confidence in the flesh, I have more: 5 circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin; a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; 6 as to zeal, persecuting the church; as to righteousness in the law, faultless.
7 But whatever was gain to me I count as loss for the sake of Christ. 8 More 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 9 and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, a the righteousness from God on the basis of faith.
Pressing on toward the Goal
12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize of God’s heavenly calling in Christ Jesus.
15 All 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. 16 Nevertheless, we must live up to what we have already attained.
Citizenship in Heaven
17 Join one another in following my example, brothers, and carefully observe those who walk according to the pattern we set for you. 18 For as I have often told you before, and now say again even with tears: Many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and their glory is in their shame. Their minds are set on earthly things.
20 But our citizenship is in heaven, and we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who, by the power that enables Him to subject all things to Himself, will transform our lowly bodies to be like His glorious body.
9 a Or through the faithfulness of Christ