That I May Know Him!
By L. W. Beckley
“That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings…” (Phil. 3:10). Might we be enthralled with Jesus Himself!
Must we have a Christmas that we may remember His incarnation?
Must we have Palm Sunday that we shall not forget His presentation?
Must we have a Good Friday that we shall remember His crucifixion?
Must we have an Easter lest we forget His resurrection?
Must we have novel programs and special speakers to induce us to His house of worship?
Must we have attendance contests to stir us to meet for the study of His Word?
Must we have chapter counts to make us read His Word?
Must we have luminous prayer reminders lest we forget to talk with Him at the day’s close?
Must we have pledges and self-denial banks to make us give to Him?
Must we be jollied and flattered to make us sing His praises?
Must we be coaxed and coddled to make us serve Him?
Must we have these and numerous other devices, purporting to aid in our worship and service?
If we must, it is because we do not know Him as we ought!
There is such a thing as knowing Him as Savior, but scarcely being acquainted with Him as a real, personal, indwelling Presence.
There is such a thing as possessing Him, but not being possessed by Him.
In His Ephesian letter (3:17) Paul prays for the saints: “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith....” But does He not indwell every believer? Most assuredly. “…Know ye not…how that Jesus Christ is in you?...” (2 Cor. 13:5).
But here is another sense of indwelling. May it not be something like this: You have a roomer in your home. He leaves in the morning and returns at evening. You see little of him and know less about him. On the other hand, you take a close friend into your home to live with you. He eats at your table, sits at the family fireside, shares all the family comforts and joys. Both of these persons are occupants of your house. But one merely resides, the other dwells there. The one is a presence apart, the other a presence intertwined with every interest of the home.
The Lord Jesus desires to dwell in our hearts.
But we do not know Him intimately. We somehow make ourselves believe that these devices for bringing to mind, spurring our zeal, and stirring our emotions are the orthodox prescription for living the normal Christian life. But they are not!
What we need is to KNOW HIM, to have Him DWELLING in our hearts. As this precious experience becomes real to us, we shall find ourselves losing interest in the weak and beggarly appendages to the Christian life. We shall not feel the poorer for their loss. We shall count ourselves infinitely rich in the joy and sweetness of His lovely, satisfying Presence. We find ourselves sharing Paul’s yearning to know Him. We have had a taste of His wonderful Presence. He satisfies. Nothing else does.
Father, give us hearts that yearn more and more for Christ. Show us our impoverished lives until we shall turn from everything that dims our vision of Him, and through a new experience in Thy Word and prayer, may we become so intimately acquainted with Him that we shall enjoy and exemplify to all about us, the Christ-centered life.
“Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face;
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.”