"Who worship God in the Spirit..."
Text: Philippians 3:3
THE TRUE BELIEVERS
It was inevitable that Paul had to devote time to describe the true believers in Christ. The Judaizers defined true belief in terms of receiving circumcision. Paul defined it brilliantly in the following text.
“For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit,
rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.”
FOUR ESSENTIAL FEATURES HIGHLIGHTED
In this short text Paul highlighted four features that define a true believer.
1. “For we are the circumcision”
a) Spiritual circumcision is in mind.
b) This is to be understood in our union with Christ (Colossians 2:11).
2. “Who worship God in the Spirit”
a) This text is probably better understood in the light of John 4:24.
b) True believers will desire to worship God.
c) They will worship God “in the Spirit”.
d) The contrast is implied…
i) The flesh
ii) The Law
iii) The teachings of the Judaizers
iv) The practices they advocated
3. “Who… rejoice in Christ Jesus”
a) The central focus of true Christianity is always the Lord Jesus Christ.
b) And those who truly are in Christ will always rejoice in Him.
c) This point about “rejoicing in Christ Jesus” may have been emphasised as a contrast to the Judaizers whose religious beliefs and practices do not produce any joy
4. “And have no confidence in the flesh”
a) No confidence in the rite of circumcision.
b) No confidence in hoping to find justification by the keeping of the Law (Galatians 2:16).
c) No confidence in any of the teachings and practices of the Judaizers.
d) Gentile believers do not need to become Jewish proselytes.