CHRISTIANITY IS A SYSTEMATIC PROCESS.
1. Yes, Christianity is a procedure; one that calls for systematic action on our part.
A. A group of required elements, one following another.
2. It, in no way, is to be considered a passive, "Jesus paid it all", process.
A. Process=a series of actions or operations definitely leading to an end.
3. If Paul teaches anything in our text (Phil. 3) for this lesson, he certainly teaches action on our part.
4. Christianity, true Christianity, is a systematic process of life based upon the teaching of the New Testament. 2 Tim. 2:19-26; Rom. 8:1-17.
5. So, let us note, from our text, the process that is to be followed if one considers himself to be a Christian:
I. "FORGETTING WHAT IS BEHIND" -- Phil. 3:13.
A. This does not suggest that Paul lost his memory.
1. He remembered his past life as is referred to in 3:4-6.
2. But, he meant that he simply refused to glory in his past. 3:7-11.
3. He not only refused to glory in his past, but he also refused to be hindered by his past. 1 Tim. 1:12-17.
4. Another thing that Paul refused to do, was to yearn for the past. Lk. 9:62; Exo. 16:2,3; Num. 11:4-7; Acts 7:39; 2 Pet. 2:20-22.
II. "STRAINING, STRETCHING, AND REACHING FOR THAT WHICH LIES AHEAD." -- Phil. 3:13.
A. This stretching forward cannot be attained if we are loaded down with the sin and burden of unbelief. Heb. 12:1,2.
B. Neither can we leave the past behind by standing still. 1 Cor. 9:24-26. Still water becomes stagnant.
C. One cannot succeed if he allows himself to be side-tracked or detoured. 2 Pet. 3:17,18.
III. "PRESS ON TOWARD THE GOAL". -- Phil. 3:14.
A. Our citizenship is in heaven. 3:20,21.
B. There, we shall be like Him. 1 Jno. 3:1-3.
IV. SO, IT IS, IN THE PROCESS OF CONVERSION TO CHRISTIANITY.
A. We need to forget our sinful past. Eph. 4:17-32.
B. And reach out for maturity. Eph. 4:14,15; 1 Pet. 2:1,2.
C. Thereby we press for perfection. Heb. 6;1.
V. WE ARE ALSO TO PROCEDE AS A CHRISTIAN TO LIVE THE CHRISTIAN LIFE.
A. By leaving the elementary principles of our life. Heb. 5:11-6:2.
B. And as Christians, we are to continue in well-doing. Gal. 6:9.
C. In this, as Christians, we are pressing for the perfiction that is in Christ. Jas. 1:2-4.
VI. THE END OF THE CHRISTIAN LIFE:
A. Presumes endurance on our part. Jas. 1:12.
B. Implies a reward. 2 Tim. 4:7,8.
C. And anticipates perfection. 1 Thes. 4:13-18.
1. We have noted what Paul said that he was doing in Phil. 3:13,14.
2. We have also applied this same idea to our conversion to Christ, and our walk in Him.
3. This, then, is the sytematic process of Christianity.
4. But, a person cannot follow this systematic process until he first starts out on the road by becoming a Christian.
A. Are you a Christian? Mt. 7:13,14; Jer. 6:16.
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