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Chapter 3

In verse 2 Paul list three things to "Beware of":
  1. dogs (metaphor: an offensively bold or disrespectful; insolent or impertinent. man)
  2. evil workers (Those who work at making trouble and are injurious, and destructive,)
  3. concision ( people who divide the congregation within or from other congregations of the whole Church)
We see Paul use this literary method of listing three things to describe one idea in Ephesians 5
This is one of many warnings we see Paul and the Apostles write to us about.
This would be like those who "debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God" mentioned at the end of Romans 1 and in Proverbs 16:28 "A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends."
In verse 3 we are led to believe Paul says that they are the "circumcision, which worship" but he means those who are separated "to serve" because the word here is not proskuneo translated worship 60 out of 60 times meaning submission or homage to a superior. But this is the word for serve meaning "to perform sacred services, to offer gifts, to worship God in the observance of the rites instituted for his worship"
Paul continues to not only warn the people that they may be tempted to stray but also that they should seek and pursue perfection, striving as Christ commanded.
This is so that all men might see the "fellowship of the mystery" which is to say communion which has been hidden from those who go the way of Cain, Nimrod, and Balaam.
He prays that they "faint not" which is also mentioned in 2 Corinthians 4:1 "Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not;... 16 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day." and in

Galatians 6:9 "And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."

1 ¶ Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe. 2 Beware of dogs,[1] beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.[2] 3 For we are the circumcision, which worship[3] God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.

4 ¶ Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: 5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; 6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. 7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. 8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung,[4] that I may win Christ,

9 ¶ And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. 13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

15 ¶ Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. 16 Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk[5] by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.

17 ¶ Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk[6] so as ye have us for an ensample. 18 (For many walk,[6] of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: 19 Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.) 20 For our conversation[7] is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
  1. 2965 ~κύων~ kuon \@koo’-ohn\@ a root word related to 420; n m AV-dog 5; 5
    1) a dog
    2) metaph. a man of impure mind, an impudent man. ... scavenging canine; (figuratively) a spiritual predator who feeds off others. [A loose dog was disdained in ancient times – viewed as a "mooch pooch" that ran about as a scavenger.]
  2. 2699 ~κατατομή~ katatome \@kat-at-om-ay’\@ from a compound of 2596 and temno (to cut); n f AV-concision 1; 1
    1) to cut up, mutilation, spoiling
  3. Not proskuneo translated worship 60 out of 60 times meaning submission or homage to a superior. but is the word for serve.
    • 3000 ~λατρεύω~ latreuo \@lat-ryoo’-o\@ from latris (a hired menial); TDNT-4:58,503; {See TDNT 428} v AV-serve 16, worship 3, do the service 1, worshipper 1; 21
    1) to serve for hire
    2) to serve, minister to, either to the gods or men and used alike of slaves and freemen
    2a) in the NT, to render religious service or homage, to worship
    2b) to perform sacred services, to offer gifts, to worship God in the observance of the rites instituted for his worship
    2b1) of priests, to officiate, to discharge the sacred office
  4. 4657 ~σκύβαλον~ skubalon \@skoo’-bal-on\@ neuter of a presumed derivative of 1519 and 2965 and 906; TDNT-7:445,1052; {See TDNT 725} n n AV-dung 1; 1
    1) any refuse, as the excrement of animals, offscourings, rubbish, dregs
    1a) of things worthless and detestable
  5. 4748 ~στοιχέω~ stoicheo \@stoy-kheh’-o\@ from a derivative of steicho (to range in regular line); TDNT-7:666,1087; {See TDNT 748} v AV-walk 4, walk orderly 1; 5
    1) to proceed in a row as the march of a soldier, go in order
    1a) metaph. to go on prosperously, to turn out well
    2) to walk
    2a) to direct one’s life, to live
  6. 6.0 6.1 4043 ~περιπατέω~ peripateo \@per-ee-pat-eh’-o\@ from 4012 and 3961; v AV-walk 93, go 1, walk about 1, be occupied 1; 96
    1) to walk
    1a) to make one’s way, progress; to make due use of opportunities
    1b) Hebrew for, to live
    1b1) to regulate one’s life
    1b2) to conduct one’s self
    1b3) to pass one’s life
  7. 4175 ~πολίτευμα~ politeuma \@pol-it’-yoo-mah\@ from 4176; n n AV-conversation 1; 1
    1) the administration of civil affairs or of a commonwealth
    2) the constitution of a commonwealth, form of government and the laws by which it is administered
    3) a state, commonwealth 3a) the commonwealth of citizens