On the one hand, it can be our Low self-esteem. Those of us who have grown in a negative environment, we may entertain inferiority complex. We may be self-absorbed, self-occupied, self-conscious with self-pity.
What do others think about me? How about my hairstyle? What about my cloth? How do I look?
Why others do not appreciate me? Why am I not getting enough attention? What others are thinking about me? Etc. etc. Such individual continues to seek confidence in themselves. Their source of confidence and strength is themselves. Even if they think about Christ or think about others, they think for their own sake.
On the other hand, it can be High self-esteem. Looking for faults in others always. Somehow to prove that the guy next door is not as good as he is.
Ya!, I like that guy what he says BUT blah blah…. He is wonderful person BUT, he blah, blah ….. . Brother! I appreciate your hard work BUT…. blah blaah. These people use BUTs to push their agendas to get attention to themselves.
They enjoy making look others inferior. Because in their mind they have the best and the final answer. Within their limited perspectives they can connect things logically better than others. Apparently, there are too much confidence in their own flesh.
The latter was the problem with the Church at Phillipi in A. D. 61. Phillipi was a city named after the father of Alexander the Great, Philip of Macedon, who captured the city from the Theracians in 360 B.C. It was in fact “Rome in miniature form.” The city was inhabited by mostly Roman citizens who took pride in their wealth and status. It is no wonder that the Church had too many smart leaders who liked to outsmart each other. It became worst, especially when two outspoken women Euodia and Syntyche, which is mentioned in chapter 4 of Phillipians, had gone public in their quarrel against each other.
The Church at Philipi, in stead of focusing the unreached frontier of Romans and Greeks, were engulfed in their internal problem of disunity.
The greatest harm that can cause to the work of God in any Church is when the members and leaders love their personal opinions more than they love fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.
Let us now turn to the text. Although our central text is Phil 3: 7-10, we will browse through entire letter.
Notice chapter 1: 1, 5
Philippians 1:1 Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all the saints in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons.
Philippians 1:5 5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now,
Paul regards the Christians at Phillipi as the saints in Jesus Christ (verse 1) as well as partners in the gospel (verse 5).
But as you read the four chapters of his letter, it becomes apparent that there are people in the Church at Phillipi who have failed to know Jesus Christ personally on a daily basis. As a result, they are confused. They do not realize that what apparently seems to be a gain is actually a loss.