"That I may know Him!..." Phil.3:10
Sin entered the human heart. Adam and Eve sinned. Immediately their relationship with God was broken. The veil of sin came between the heart and mind of God and the heart and mind of man, and separated ALL of us from Him. SIN ENTERED and God and man parted company. We all went our own way, not because God wanted it that way, but because man wanted his own way. Man wanted to be in control of his life. He wanted to be free from the constraints that God made on him. He found that he had the power and the free will to make his own path in life, but the moment he chose that path he distanced himself from his Creator. No longer was he able to walk and talk with Him in sweet fellowship and trust in His provider and maker. Man has made his own choices and mostly they self-centered and lead into darkness and death. Emptiness entered man's heart. Yet God in His love for us made a WAY! - so that we can come back to Him, and through surrender to Him, we can find that eternal, glorious life that was severed at the Garden of Eden so long ago. Christ, the SON of God came, "Emmanuel" ('God-With-Us') came to restore and heal that relationship that was broken so long ago. When Jesus died on the cross, there was a great earthquake and the massive, impenetrable veil in the temple was rent asunder - opening the way for us to return to our Father. His death was not to start a new religion. It was the sacrifice of God Himself to impart His OWN LIFE to mankind, so that what was lost may be found again. Within us is a spiritual "hole" that only God can fill and ONLY through a living, breathing, life-imparting relationship with Him. How can this be? How can those vibrant words of Paul that echo down through the centuries be applied to US so that "I may KNOW HIM!"?
In John 3 Jesus tells Nicodemus that ONLY through being "born again", through a NEW BIRTH, a SPIRITUAL BIRTH into a NEW SPIRITUAL LIFE can we come back to our Father! When we step out of the old into the new, He will give us ears to hear, eyes to see, and hearts to know and respond to Him. There IS no other way. Jesus IS the ONLY way, the ONLY truth and the ONLY life and no man can come to the Father but by HIm (John14:6). All of a sudden, like a newborn baby thrust into the world, everything becomes new! Life STARTS - but that helpless, new life is SO dependent on Him and our Father is there to feed us milk to grow, and to help us through all the trials and tribulations that we will face. DO WE KNOW HIM? DO WE TRULY, NOW, HAVE FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM? DO WE SEE OUR ABBA-FATHER in front of us with His hands outstretched as we flex our muscles to walk, then to run to Him - and the mighty hands that catch us from falling? Is He there for us as we face this "new life, this new world" that we as babes in Christ have been born into? Do WE KNOW HIS VOICE? - do we have the mind and heart of Christ by KNOWING HIM? Jesus said, "My sheep hear MY VOICE and I know them and they follow ME!"(John 10:27) “If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him...... Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?" (John 14:7,9) Yet there is a depths of "knowing Him" that Paul hungered after......a deep hunger and thirst that can only come from a spiritual REVELATION of Jesus. It is a compulsion in us to turn away from all that is in the world, all the shallowness and darkness, the hollow emptiness of the things that the world offers, a desperation for that INTIMACY that was lost in the garden, and can ONLY come through complete and total surrender to God. Paul had a revelation of Jesus that completely shattered his old life and belief-system in a moment of time. The light of God shone into his soul and blinded him to all except Jesus. His past was laid bare, and God rebuilt Him completely.....the cry from his soul, "That I may KNOW HIM!..." that burst from the lips of that murderous, prideful, Pharisee of the pharisees, transforming him COMPLETELY into a broken, humble, holy and righteous follower of the Lord Jesus Christ is no more than what God would do in us, if we would only cry, "THAT I MAY KNOW HIM! WE have the choice to restore that which was lost but that old man must die as Saul died on the road to Damascus so that Paul could live, and that WE would KNOW HIM!
"If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God." (Col.3 :1-3)