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Philippians 3:3-9 (14 of 17)
Dr. Ernest L. Easley
We're learning these days from the book of Philippians "the secret to continual joy." So .. take your Bible and turn to Philippians chapter 3.
Now last Wednesday night we looked at the first 3 verses and verse 2 in particular where Paul cautions, "Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilation."
Now .. who were the dogs? Well .. remember that the Jews referred to the Gentiles as "dogs." When they called them "dogs" is was no compliment! They weren't comparing them to the kind of dogs that were groomed every month with ribbons on top of their head.
They were comparing them to the dogs that ran wild through the streets! They were scavengers! They were unclean! They were dangerous!
Now who was Paul referring to when he said, "Beware of dogs?" The Judaizers! They were people from Judea that were teaching that circumcision was necessary for salvation! They taught that it was Jesus + Circumcision = Salvation! They were weakening the gospel message and Paul warned, "Look out for them!"
Now after a thrice repeated warning .. Paul says in the last part of verse 3, "and have no confidence in the flesh."
What's the "flesh?" Our old nature! Our old self! You cannot trust your old nature! Listen to Romans 7.18, "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find."
Now praise the Lord that when Jesus steps into our life that we receive a new nature. But that new nature doesn't replace our old nature ... they co-exist! The flesh never changes! Jesus said in John 3.6, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh."
Jesus doesn't come into our life to improve our flesh!! In fact .. the Bible says that our old nature is at odds with our new nature.
Galatians 5.17, "For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one an ...
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