DATE WRITTEN: Saturday, 2020-08-01
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Philippians 3:10
TRANSLATION: Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
BIBLE TEXT: 10 [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection [[b]which it exerts over believers], and that I may so share His sufferings as to be continually transformed [in spirit into His likeness even] to His death, [in the hope]
OBSERVATION: What a thought to ponder today! For the non-believer, I’m sure we would hear quite a variety of things that they are determined to accomplish during the time they expect to be here with us. But for the believer in Jesus Christ, how would you respond? Not to me, but to God! I believe that Paul spoke from what was bearing on his heart at the time. Stop and think about what your automatic response might be if you were asked this question while you are out and about today!
APPLICATION: We often become sidetracked with the things of life that just pop up unannounced and unplanned, but our Scripture today shows that Paul was a very committed and determined man, so it is important that we meditate closer on this to see what Paul had to say. He was not content in just telling the church at Philippi what they needed to do, for he said in other Scripture that we could safely follow him, as he follows Christ. In this case he wanted the church to know how serious he was about his intimacy with Christ, and what his determined purpose in life was. I believe that we tend to feel more apt to listen to someone who is practicing what they preach! In the bracketed commentary we see where Paul wanted to become increasingly more intimate in his relationship with God. He wanted to grasp the depth of God’s heart – the One who loves men and women, even though they may have totally disregarded Him. Yes. You see, God was willing to sacrifice His precious and only Son to save dirty, unloving, uncaring, sinners such as you and I, my friend. I believe that Paul went to this depth not only as a man who wanted a closer relationship with the Savior of the world, but also because of all that was displayed by the Master on the cross. For those who need reminding, out of total obedience to the Father, Jesus endured beatings by the authorities, shame and mistreatment as He was marched through the streets of Jerusalem with a heavy cross on His beaten and bruised back. In spite of His power to call a legion of angels to His defense, He suffered through having His hands nailed to a cross and His side pierced with a sword. He hung and died on that cross between two criminals, while His mother looked on painfully. Jesus did this out of mere love for all those He created, who would ever seek redemption of their sin and desire a life dedicated to God. This was no ordinary man, dear friends, and Paul desired nothing more than to know Jesus – yes, to know Him so intimately that he would live the rest of his life imitating the Savior who demonstrated His love in this way. But friend, this is the same Savior who showed such love for you and I also. Are we committed enough to sacrifice our time, our talent, our money and our desires to spend time in His Word getting to know Him better; open up ourselves to Him as we go before Him in prayer; and share our story with all that we come into contact with? If He was the president of your country, I believe you would tell the world of your experiences together. Jesus is the King of the world, won’t you also consider telling everyone about His miraculous touch on your life? Paul wanted to grow into the type person that would love like Jesus did while on the cross. What is your determined purpose in life?
PRAYER: Dearest Lord Jesus, You gave the ultimate for us – life itself, even through the cruelty of the cross. Our ancestor, Paul, shared that he wanted nothing more than to be like You – especially like You demonstrated at Calvary. This leaves us to consider: what are we willing to commit to in appreciation for all that You did out of love for us? Oh God, may there never be any doubt as to whose we are, and as a demonstration of our love and commitment to You, may our actions and our commitment be such that the world will know, and may be encouraged to know, the One in whom we believe, and the One that we serve faithfully every day. Often we are challenged to get into Your Word, or pray, or even attend church, and yes, we could attribute that to lack of time. But Lord, I believe that we find time for the things of our heart. Oh that You may be so prominent in our hearts, that my readers and I will be totally committed to serving You and reflecting Your character and teachings all the days of our life. We need You precious Lord. Please embolden us, and above all, help us to make You a priority in our lives every day. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Sebring, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would encourage you to visit my home church, Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!