Sermon Notes

“12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. 16 Only let us hold true to what we have attained.”
This week, Pastor Chris exhorted us through Paul’s letter to persevere and press on in the faith. Paul was in a Roman jail, isolated, and nearing the end of his life. He likens the Christian walk is a long-distance race, urging believers to fix their eyes on Christ in order for them to endure to the end. Pastor Chris expressed how passivity is not a part of the Christian life. In Christ, we are called to be active in our faith for the glory of our Lord. In this time, we ought to be actively pressing into Jesus for the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
3 thoughts on what it means to be one who presses on

  1. Make God’s goals your own – (v.12)
    1. Surrender to God’s purposes for your life. – “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” – Ephesians 3:13
  2. Keep a forward focus at all times (v. 13)
    1. There’s a health degree of remembrance (ex: Passover)
    2. Bullying memories want to tell us we are the same
    3. How to keep a forward focus
      1. get rid of distractions
      2. forget what is behind (ex: runners, Lot’s wife in Luke 17:32)
      3. strain forward to what lies ahead (v. 14). We belong in heaven (Philippians 3:20-21).
  3. Don’t lose ground in your walk with Christ (v. 15-16)
    1. Learn what it means to be resilient. It is the ability to not only bounce back from adversity but to grow from it. Resilient people learn.
    2. The goal: a call heavenward, and finding satisfaction in Jesus
    3. The finish line: keeping your eyes on Him and the heavenly call. We were not created for this world. We are citizens of heaven.

Discussion Questions:

  1. How do you press on with joy? How do you endure the race set before you with joy in the midst of difficulties?
  2. Do you ever look back in such a way that it keeps you from moving forward in your Christian walk? Give an example.

Application Questions:

  1. Where are your eyes right now? Are they fixed on the upward call? On Jesus? Or surviving/making something go away/how will I survive?
  2. Am I drawing close to God during this time or farther apart?