I am currently reading in Philippians. I made a commitment to go through all of Paul's Epistles and this is where I am. But I have been trying a new thing, well a new couple of things. Here is my process: read the passage, journal/pray, read commentary (sometimes translate), journal more. While sometimes the commentary makes my quiet time feel too intellectual and not enough heart engaged (such that I put it away for the day), sometimes it is gives some beautiful insight! I want to share some of that insight with you to do (credit to the book pictured above - Thanks, Dad, for the loan).
In Philippians 1:9-11 it says (ESV), "And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ,filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God." The KJV, however, says "that we may be sincere and without offense". So I want to look at the word "sincere". Apparently it comes from the ancient "sin cere" which means "without wax" in Latin or "sun tested" in its Greek form. So the cheapest pottery is thick and easy to make, it is everywhere in archaeological finds. But, the cheapest pottery is thin. It is quite hard to make, and it often cracks when it is fired. So many times dishonest artisans would put a hard wax in the cracks that is not discernible to the naked eye, especially once it is glazed or painted. But, if the pottery is held up to the light, the cracks are darker than the rest of the pottery and openly discernible. So, fine artisans would mark their finest things "without wax" or "sun tested" so that people would know they were pure or sincere. I want to be sun tested. I want to be without wax. We try to cover up our flaws, our sins from an all-knowing God (which is inherently ridiculous). We try and make the world think that we have it all together and have it all figured out. We do not! Let us be sun tested instead! Let us be refined and formed by The Potter (God), that we may be fine pottery. Let us be those that are in pursuit of perfection and honest about where we fall short. Let us be remade daily after God's own desire. Amen! To God be the glory, great things He hath done So loved He, the world, that He gave us His Son