Philippians 3New Life Version (NLV)
It Is Christ Only—Not the Things You Do
3 So now, my Christian brothers, be happy because you belong to Christ. It is not hard for me to write the same things to you. It is good for you. 2 Watch out for false teachers. Watch out for sinful men. They want you to depend on the religious act of becoming a Jew for your hope. 3 The act of becoming a Jew has nothing to do with us becoming Christians. We worship God through His Spirit and are proud of Jesus Christ. We have no faith in what we ourselves can do. 4 I could have reason to trust in the flesh. If anyone could feel that the flesh could do something for him, I could. 5 I went through the religious act of becoming a Jew when I was eight days old. I was born a Jew and came from the family group of Benjamin. I was a Jewish son of Jewish parents. I belonged to the group of the proud religious law-keepers. 6 I followed my religion with all my heart and did everything I could to make it hard for the church. No one could say anything against the way I obeyed the Law.
Christ Must Be Lord of Our Lives
7 But I gave up those things that were so important to me for Christ. 8 Even more than that, I think of everything as worth nothing. It is so much better to know Christ Jesus my Lord. I have lost everything for Him. And I think of these things as worth nothing so that I can have Christ. 9 I want to be as one with Him. I could not be right with God by what the Law said I must do. I was made right with God by faith in Christ. 10 I want to know Him. I want to have the same power in my life that raised Jesus from the dead. I want to understand and have a share in His sufferings and be like Christ in His death. 11 Then I may be raised up from among the dead.
12 I do not say that I have received this or have already become perfect. But I keep going on to make that life my own as Christ Jesus made me His own. 13 No, Christian brothers, I do not have that life yet. But I do one thing. I forget everything that is behind me and look forward to that which is ahead of me. 14 My eyes are on the crown. I want to win the race and get the crown of God’s call from heaven through Christ Jesus. 15 All of us who are full-grown Christians should think this way. If you do not think this way, God will show it to you. 16 So let us keep on obeying the same truth we have already been following.
17 Christian brothers, live your lives as I have lived mine. Watch those who live as I have taught you to live. 18 There are many whose lives show they hate the cross of Christ. I have told you this before. Now I tell you again with tears in my eyes. 19 Their god is their stomach. They take pride in things they should be ashamed of. All they think about are the things of this world. In the end they will be destroyed. 20 But we are citizens of heaven. Christ, the One Who saves from the punishment of sin, will be coming down from heaven again. We are waiting for Him to return. 21 He will change these bodies of ours of the earth and make them new. He will make them like His body of shining-greatness. He has the power to do this because He can make all things obey Him.