Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. -- Philippians 3:17-21 (ESV
Politicians all lie. Party differences only differentiate what they will lie about to further their power and their own political ends. We come to expect this in a corrupt society. We need to factor this into our blind allegiance to any political figure or party. The NAR dominionist blurs the lines between the carnal and the eternal. They casually mix the holy with the profane. They do so because truth be told, they love this world. They idolize this world. As part of the apostate church, this world allows them great leeway and power. There is nothing more powerful than the ability to believe you are going to heaven while living like complete hell. This is the end result of decades of deconstructing the true Gospel message through the purpose driven nightmare and seeker friendly theories of alleged church growth. Yes, Rick Warren has created an empire out of convincing more people to come to church but has done so at the cost of their eternal soul.
One of the central arguments made by the NAR dominionist is that we are citizens of both heaven and America. This is simply not supported by scripture. God does not want double minded people. He does not want split loyalties that are always in conflict. God makes this distinction crystal clear in the key verses. We will walk through these verses today to hear what sayeth the Lord. These key verses are the end of the third chapter of Philippians. So first let us understand the surrounding context. Philippians Three starts out speaking about the righteousness believers have in Christ. Paul does so by drawing a clear and oppositional contrast between believers and those in the world. He refers to those in the world as dogs and many commentators state this usage is not meant solely for heathens but also specifically for the Judaizers, who insisted on adding to salvation the need for circumcision. Either way, Pail states he places no faith in the flesh even though if anyone would, he should. Why? Because under the rules of the world he was a blameless Pharisee of the tribe of Benjamin. A Hebrew of Hebrews. He was a zealous persecutor of the church before he was able to lose it all for Christ. Indeed, everything he had in this world he now counts as absolute garbage compared to just knowing Jesus. That is how our faith is supposed to affect us beloved! Every cause we think is righteous in this world is rubbish compared to gaining Christ. To truly know the power of His resurrection means to no longer focus on this temporal world. Paul is setting up for the grand finale in the key verses here. To share not in His glory, as many heresies teach today, but rather His sufferings. Everyone wants to try on the crown of glory. The crown of thorns? Not so much. We do not get to the glory without the thorns beloved. So Paul writes that we press on. Not concerning ourselves with the things the world is focused on. No; we forget what lies behind us and strain towards the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus -- hallelujah! Paul says if we be mature we need to think this way. To hold true not to the things from whence we came but rather what we have attained. With this as the backdrop, we come to the key verses. Let us reason together and walk through these, one point at a time:
Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us.
The first call is not for any sense of independence or free thinking. Paul boldly says to imitate him in these matters. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel. In this imitation, God has always provided us with examples to keep our eyes focused on. Now we must understand that the apostate church chases the things of this world because it idolizes this world. It pays lip service to Christ and His Gospel but in the end the focus is not on the eternal needs of the kingdom but rather the carnal needs of this world and their political persuasion. For example, one of the celebratory reasons for idolizing the current administration, NAR dominionists will point to their refusal to enforce the Johnson Amendment that prohibited churches from preaching politics or endorsing candidates. Looking past the hypocrisy of not adhering to laws, the larger point is that someone truly focused on the kingdom would realize this is damaging to the cause of the Gospel. The church in America barely preaches the Gospel to begin with and now they are given another reason to not preach it. This is no small point beloved. The apostate church is overly focused on carnal matters of politics on this earth.
For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.
Paul draws the comparison between unbelievers and those saved by Christ. The unsaved walk as enemies of the cross. This is no point for celebration as Paul says it with tears. It should bother the saved that so many do not know Christ. Since we know that salvation is supernatural act achieved solely through the preaching of the Gospel, that should be our only focus. Not to market the church to the unsaved. Not convince them into salvation. Not to rationalize with them. If the church simply does their job of preaching the Gospel then we know there will be two results. First of all, the saved will grow in maturity into the fullness of Christ. The second result will be that the lost will be drawn by the Holy Spirit according to the will of God. Every time we sit through a sermon about ourselves, our lives in this world, motivation, self-help, earthly prosperity or any other heresy designed to take our eyes and ears away from the Gospel we can be guaranteed that no one saved is growing in Christ and no one unsaved is being drawn by God.
Paul gets into further detail. The enemies of the cross have destruction as their end. Why would Paul make this point? Because it should motivate us! There is no "hell light." The broad path does not lead to a different way of vague subtlety. It leads to destruction! This is the part of the Gospel that has been surgically removed over the years by the purpose driven church through the seeker friendly models of alleged church growth. When we blur the lines and focus too much on this world and their politics, we lose sight of who these folks are. They are unsaved! Their end is destruction! Wake up slumbering church! Their god is their belly. Well, what does that mean? It means their focus is solely in fulfilling their desires. When the bible commands us to die to self and carry our cross, it means that our belly is denied for our God. What we want is denied for our God. The politics and political parties of this world could care less about God and the cause of Jesus Christ.