You Can Know God
“Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For His sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith.” Philippians 3:8-9 (ESV)
Much like an elite athlete, Paul, the writer of these verses, had devoted his life to training. He had put in the hard work and long hours so he could know all of the right religious answers. He had worked with one of the best coaches and had received recognition for his skill. If anyone could be confident because of what he had accomplished, it was Paul.
But just like the accomplishments of the world's Olympians, Paul’s accolades are worthless in comparison to his relationship with Jesus. No medal, no award, no achievement can come close to the satisfaction and acceptance that is found in Christ. Next to knowing Christ, Paul writes, things like medals look like garbage. That’s how good a relationship with Jesus is — the most valuable things in our lives can’t even begin to compare!
God loves us and created us to be in a wonderful relationship with Him. But because of our stubbornness, we chose to do things our own way and this relationship with Him was broken. Because of our sin, or our attitudes of active rebellion or passive indifference toward Him, we are separated from God who is perfect and holy.
Apart from Jesus, we are unable to attain true victory. On our own strength, we can never achieve the perfection that is necessary to be right with God. No matter how hard we work, how much we train or how many medals we win, we can’t bridge the gulf that separates us from God on our own; we are deserving of death, spiritual separation from God.
But, God made a way for us to be made perfect and right in His eyes—He sent His Son, Jesus. Jesus took the punishment we deserved for our sin and gave His life for us on the cross. But that’s not the end of story; Jesus rose from the grave, triumphing over sin and death!
Because of what Jesus has done on our behalf, we can have a personal relationship with the God of the universe. In faith, we can choose to follow Jesus and experience His love and grace. We can experience triumph over sin as He gives us His strength.
Questions: Do you know God personally, or do you just know about Him? What obstacles prevent you from placing your faith in Jesus today?
Prayer: God, if it’s possible to have a relationship with You, then I want to know You. Help me see what may be keeping me from knowing You personally and experiencing Your love. I don’t want to just believe what other people say is true about You, but I want to know who You really are and follow Your plan for my life.
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