Philippians 3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.
This passage of scripture reminds us of the importance of being found in Christ, especially in these last days of earth's history, when there seems to be an unspoken uneasiness across the globe, with saber-rattling by the Russians, while the nations in the middle-east continue their age-old bickering over which brand of Islam is to be implemented. Now, with all of these, and other disturbances taking place daily, it becomes all the more important for us to be found in Christ, not merely as hearers of the word, but as doers, who ardently desire an ever-deepening relationship with The Lord Jesus Christ, and who will stop at nothing until we are in harmony with His will and His character.
But we must understand that to be found in Christ means much more than having our names on the church books, for it involves surrendering our own righteousness, in favor of a grateful, and intelligent understanding of Christ's righteousness, as our only passport to heaven, and as the only means by which we can be changed from one stage of development to another, until His image is perfectly reflected in, and through us. Hence the reason why the servant of The Lord sets the gold standard for us attain to, through the power of The Holy Spirit, and through surrender of our entire mind and body to God, so that His good will may be perfected in us. Let's read:
[Great Controversy pp. 188] Satan finds in human hearts some point where he can gain a foot-hold; some sinful desire is cherished, by means of which his temptations assert their power. But Christ declared of himself, “The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.” [John 14:30.] Satan could find nothing in the Son of God that would enable him to gain the victory. He had kept his Father’s commandments, and there was no sin in him that Satan could use to his advantage. This is the condition in which those must be found who shall stand in the time of trouble.
Now brethren, it is important for us to understand that this work will not be accomplished by chance, for there must be deep soul-searching by every Christian every day, to see whether or not our words, thoughts, and actions are in harmony with the mind and character of The Christ whom we serve, and if any blemishes or short-comings are discovered for any reason, that we not make excuses, nor provision for the flesh, to satisfy it in the lusts thereof, but like He who called us is holy, we too may seek for that holiness that is to be found only in Christ.
This is the reason why it is necessary for us to seek God everyday, through the morning and evening sacrifice, committing our ways unto The Lord before we take up our responsibilities in the morning, and confessing our sins before going to bed at night. Prayerful thought and deep reflection upon the days activities must be done, to see if our feet diverged from the path of strict integrity during the working hours, and the laws and principles of the Bible must then be brought to bear directly on everything that was said and done.
This is what is meant by the affliction of the soul, a work that is necessary for each one of us to engage in during these days of the anti-typical Day of Atonement, in which we now live, and which is just about to close forever. Let's read:
Leviticus 23:26 And the Lord spake saying"... 27 "There shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord. 28 "For it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the Lord your God. 29 For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people.
The anti-typical day of atonement began in the year 18444, when Christ entered the most Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary, to begin the completion of the last phase in the long-running plan of salvation, by which the sins of God's professed people will be brought into judgment, to be forever blotted out, or to stand as a witness against us. Thus it is critically important that we be found in Christ every moment of every day, and not allow ourselves to be distracted by the transient and vain things of this world, for if Christ is to be held in second position in our priorities for any reason, then the work that God desires to do in us will be seriously forestalled and our Christianity will then amount to nothing more than a charade.
Let us then begin to take our soul's salvation seriously, by asking God to come into our hearts each day, to do what only He can do, for the plan of salvation is accessed by invitation only, meaning that we must choose to let Christ into our hearts on a continual basis, so that the work He has promised to do in us may become not a theory but a living reality. We therefore end with a passage of scripture which encourages us to make our move right now, for the day of grace is soon to come to an end. Let's read:
Revelation 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. 22 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
May The Lord add His blessing to the study and practice of His every word. God bless!