Paul says we should all walk by the same rule as members of the one Body of Christ.
“…let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.” – Phil 3:16
Christians are going a hundred different directions, and many don’t walk by any rule.
So, what is the rule that Paul lives by? What is the mind? It is succinctly stated in Paul’s letter to the Galatians.
“God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.” – Gal 6:14-16.
The rule for the Christian is the cross of Christ. God forbid we should glory or walk in anything else.
Immature believers might suggest that since we are saved by grace, we are free to walk anywhere and anyway we desire. This is more similar to the course of the world than the rule of a servant of God (Eph 2:2).
Applying the rule of the cross of Christ says the world is crucified unto us. If this be our rule then what the world offers us should be dead in our minds.
Religious minded folks remind us frequently that God has set a standard and law which he gave to Israel at Sinai. This is rule by which Christ told his disciples to walk in good works (Matt 23:1-3).
Applying the rule of the cross of Christ says we are crucified to the world. If this be our rule then there is nothing good in us we can offer to the world. We can only boast of Christ in us, not our own works.
“Neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision.” If the world honors or condemns you, it honors or condemns a dead man, not who you are now in Christ.
A popular rule that self-proclaimed Christians follow is the power of the Holy Spirit. By this I don’t mean the normal indwelling of the Spirit that all believers possess, but the miracles and experiences that are claimed by power of the Holy Ghost. For these folks, without feeling this power, they are not in line with God.
Applying the rule of the cross says it is of the Lord Jesus Christ, not of the Holy Spirit. Though the Holy Spirit dwells in us, the most excellent knowledge we can possess is the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ and the fellowship of his sufferings and resurrected glory (Phil 3:8-11).
Another rule that leads Christians in all the wrong directions is the rule of God’s kingdom come. Preachers trade the gospel of grace for the gospel of the kingdom, preach the kingdom now, and claim the wealth and prosperity required to further the kingdom.
The rule of the cross of Christ says what profits is a new creature, the church, the Body of Christ. The earthly things and blessings of the kingdom is not our rule of operation today (Phil 3:19-20).
“For many walk…that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ… who mind earthly things.” – Phil 3:19
“For our conversation is in heaven…” – Phil 3:20
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” – 2 Cor 5:17
The cross of Christ is the rule of walk for the Christian today. Daily, we reckon ourselves dead with Christ, so that we can live with him (Rom 6:8).
If anyone is not walking according to this rule, they are off track, and their life in Christ will be derailed.
To stay on track be followers together of Paul as an ensample. Paul lays out the rule of walking according to the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ.
“Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.” – Phil 3:17