The passage below is a stern warning from Paul, he says, “with tears in my eyes”….makes it feel like even more than a stern warning. It gives the feeling of desperation and longing to be heard and understood. This desperate desire of Paul that none should perish is the same as Christs, and part of what made him such a powerful evangelist. When was the last time I had tears in my eyes over someone else’s sin?
Philippians 3:18-19 NLT I have told you often before, and I say it again with tears in my eyes, that there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ. They are headed for destruction. Their god is their appetite, they brag about shameful things, and they think only about this life here on earth.
Their god is their appetite. How obvious Paul makes this. When we want, want, want and don’t consultant with God and seek His will, we end up allowing our flesh to run the show, and become enemies of the grace of the cross. Our flesh is our sin nature that we are all born with, it’s the part of us that wants to feel good no matter what, it’s the part of us that is never satisfied with what we have. The flesh will tell us we deserve something or we need it more than they do. The flesh is a master manipulator with in insasable appetite to rule us.
Paul is saying, when we allow our fleshly appetites to be in charge, we will perish, and there are many of us headed down that road. This is something I believe Paul was so passionate about because it closely affected him. Paul had an appite to be right, he came from a past of killing Christians because they didn’t agree with the Jewish law. Our appetite can be for a lot of different things, pride, gluttony, lust, money..fill in the blank.
We all have an appite for something that is leading us away from God. The life we have now isn’t all there is. Don’t mortgage eternity for a cheeseburger today.