"...that I may KNOW Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death." Philippians 3:10
"And we KNOW that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28
What do you think about the old saying, "It is not WHAT you know but WHO you know that really matters"? Maybe you have found this to be true at some point in your life. Many times it is said and implied with a negative connotation. Individuals with incredible knowledge in their profession have been overlooked because a less qualified person was friends with the ones doing the hiring. An athlete may not get to play as many minutes during a game because another person on the team is a favorite of the coach. There are many negative scenarios that we could discuss, but let's turn it around and see the positive one from Scripture.
One of the privileges that I have as a minister of the Gospel is the responsibility and opportunity to study the Word so much. I truly am in awe each week as I prepare for lessons and messages and find the richness of the Bible to be overwhelming time and time again. As I prepared for a message last Wednesday evening, a particular principle in the Word seemed to leap off the pages directly into my heart and mind. It has stuck with me, and each day for the past week I have meditated upon it. We as a church are studying through the Secrets to the Abundant Christian Life from John 15. This past week the message was entitled "The Secret to Loving Is Knowing". Jesus told His disciples that the world would hate them because the world hated Him. One of the reasons, if not the main reason, the world hates Jesus is because they do not know the Father (John 15:21). As I studied this, related Scriptures began to flow through my mind. For instance, Jesus told His disciples in John 14 that if they believed in God they should believe Him. You cannot believe in the Father and not believe in the Son. They are one and the same. Many in our world want to say that they believe in God, but do not accept Jesus as Lord. That mentality is incompatible with Scripture and the will of God. You cannot separate the two.
However, the thought that has stuck with me this week is from relating the two Scriptures above. Paul's great desire was to know God. It was not to know simply that He existed, or that He was all He said He was. Paul wanted to personally experience Him, walk with Him, talk to Him, and live as He would have him live. Paul desired an intimate relationship with Jesus. How much do you desire to intimately know Christ? How great is your desire to experience a knowledge of Christ like never before? Realize that if you enter into this intimate relationship there are the joys of knowing the power of His resurrection and also experiencing the fellowship of His sufferings. It is this first step that we must take.
In my study I then focused on the word KNOW in the passage, and the Holy Spirit brought to my mind that famous passage of Romans 8. During great trials we have spoken out loud these words. We have used them to help comfort and to help understand. We have tried to draw a conclusion from the passage that everything is going to be all right. May I get you to look at this passage with the other related to it? How do we KNOW that all things are going to work together for good? What is it that gives us such assurance? I have come to the conclusion that only as we KNOW Christ more intimately will we have the understanding to KNOW that all things are working together for His good and His glory. You will never be able to figure out why certain things happen in your life. You will never have an answer to your every question of "Why?" in your life. However, if you get to KNOW Christ more, you will be able to KNOW that He is going to bring all the circumstances of life together so that He will show Himself strong in your life. So obviously, what matters is not WHAT you KNOW but WHO you KNOW!
May you know Him today like never before!