Living as Enemies
Verse 18 For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ.
Paul’s reminder about being in it together set the stage for today’s poignant reminder that not everyone is on the same journey as we are on.
This information from Paul isn’t new information to them. He basically says, “If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times…” He even says that he feels anguish to the point of tears about this. This topic is that there are those who aren’t believers. Actually, they are not just unbelievers, they are haters of God and therefore enemies of the cross of Christ.
That is sometimes hard to accept, isn’t it? We don’t like to think about the fact that there are those in the world that are enemies of Christ. Yeah, we know that there are people who claim to be atheist but are those people really Christ’s enemies? We have to remind ourselves of something that Paul knew from personal experience, if we aren’t working for Christ we are working against Him. Paul was a prime example of how far a person would go to get rid of people who love Jesus and we know that he was a student of a man who was part of the group who put Jesus to death. He had learned his lessons and learned them well!
But then Jesus called him out and revealed the truth of who He is. He called Paul to be more. Paul had been called out into the truth of Christ, to live the truth of Christ and to spread the truth of Christ. Since his commissioning, Paul had learned what it felt like for the believers he had hunted down. Paul knew that the religious leaders who had killed Jesus were the same type of people who chased him out of many cities along his missionary journeys. These religious people were sure that they were the ones with truth but they were actually enemies of Christ.
We need the same warning that Paul gave his friends in Philippi, we need to be aware that there are those who fight against us and may even fight us. This is another reason we need to be intentional in our living the truth of Christ. When we live for Him, the fruit of our lives will always point to Him.
Making It Personal
Have you ever known someone who was an enemy of the cross of Christ? Are there things in your life that show you may be an enemy of the cross of Christ? How can you live out the love of Christ today?
Making It Personal Kids
How can you tell if someone is an enemy of Jesus? How can you make sure that no one can think that of you? What is a way you will show the truth of Jesus today?
Father, thank You for the reminder not to let our guard down as there are enemies of your cross that are trying to sabotage us. Give us wisdom and discernment as we deal with hearts that may not know You yet. In Jesus’ name, amen.