Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the historic one-year lectionary.
Our Epistle passage from Philippians chapter three makes a sharp distinction between Christ's people and Christ's enemies. What of the enemies of Christ? In verse 19 the end result is destruction. They follow a god called their "belly" in the Scripture. They are obedient to their appetites. they glory in things that are shameful. Their outlook is earthly.
We may have some very good appetites. Those are healthy. God created people with appetites and desires. It's significant that Paul here speaks of the belly, rather than sexual desires. Everyone wants food and drink. It's perfectly normal and healthy. But the earthly person sees that as the end goal. Food and drink as an end goal is acutely temporal. We use up our calories and our liquids in a matter of hours.
If we have only an earthly hope, it is a hope which will perish. In contrast to those who have a hope that perishes, which ends in destruction, the Christian has a hope in the resurrected Lord Jesus, who will never perish. Jesus intends to transform us to be like him, the eternal and resurrected one. This is a hope that will never pass away. It is eternal.
While we are in this earthly body, we certainly use earthly provisions. But our hope is in eternity. We look to the risen Christ, our forerunner, our hope of resurrection. He is able to care for us forever. This is the hope of the world.
If this brief meditation was helpful to you, I hope you will check out the other materials on our website at www.WittenbergCoMo.com and consider supporting us.