Knowledge that Counts #1. “I want to know Christ” (Phil.3:10).

Knowledge that Counts #1. “I want to know Christ” (Phil.3:10).

What prisoner cries from his cell that his greatest desire is: “I want to know Christ…”

These are the profound words that Paul wrote from prison in Rome to the Philippian brethren in about AD60.

This was the Pharisee who had been bent on wiping the name of Christ off the face of the earth. He was the man who stood and gave official approval for the stoning of Stephen. And not content with picking Christians off one by one, he had sought to destroy the church of Christ in every city he could.

This was no ordinary man. As for his motives, they were pure before God. As for his zeal, he persecuted the church with all his might.

He believed that he knew God, and he believed that his expert knowledge of the Old Testament qualified him to condemn Jesus and his followers as blasphemers.

It took a divine intervention to bring this godly man to his senses. Only by meeting the ascended Christ “face-to-face” on the road to Damascus did Paul realise his blindness. He discovered that he had been the blasphemer, not Jesus.

This was personal. He would later tell Timothy, “I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly” (1Tim.1:13-14).

Jesus had called the great church wrecker to be the great church builder. Paul knew how tremendously blessed he was, and from that moment forth he desired to know the depths of the Christ who saved him.

Every prayer was now offered to one end—to know Christ’s will for his life. And every gift, talent, and opportunity were now expended to one end—to build up the Kingdom of Christ.

Before Paul died, he looked back on his ministry and knew that it was being left in the hands of the One he had come to know. He said:

“For I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day” (2 Timothy 1:12).

John Staiger

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