Scubala and Gold

The beliefs and practices Paul believed worked for his spiritual gain he now counts as scubala.  Paul realized in the light of knowing Christ that what he had held up as an offering to God – the products of his former faith – was scubala.  Scubala is feces – a crude name for a vile offering.  The structural matters of the past were a liability to his joy.  Joy from God does not depend on the practice of ritual but on a relationship of faith.  Now, in the pit of a Roman dungeon, Paul feels he has gained all that really matters.  Abandoning his former faith has brought Paul to true riches.  In place of his earthly zeal, burgeoning ministry, and religious perfectionism, Paul gained Christ, a place with him, and the righteousness which only God can give.

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