For it is we who are the circumcision,1 we who serve God by his Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus,2 and who put no confidence in the flesh--
though I myself have reasons for such confidence.3 If others think they have reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more:
circumcised4 on the eighth day, of the people of Israel,5 of the tribe of Benjamin,6 a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee;76
as for zeal,8 persecuting the church;9 as for righteousness based on the law,10 faultless.
But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss11 for the sake of Christ.
What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing12 Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ139
and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law,14 but that which is through faith ina Christ--the righteousness15 that comes from God on the basis of faith.1610
I want to know17 Christ--yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings,18 becoming like him in his death,1911
and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection20 from the dead.
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal,21 but I press on to take hold22 of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.2313
Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind24 and straining toward what is ahead,