7 But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. – Philippians 3:7-9
We all have possessions that we deemed important. Many of us might have even used the expression, I can’t live without _________. Or as my daughter puts it ice cream is life. This morning, I want you to think about what is that one thing that you hold dear, that object that is important to you, that one idea, that value, that one possession that is precious to you.
For some that important possession the “I can’t live without” item might be our house or our car, maybe some jewelry that you inherited and it has sentimental value and is also valuable. I have heard before that “knowledge is power” and no one can take away your education. This leads many to hold education and knowledge as something precious to them. Maybe for others, it might not be possessions but their social status, relationships and possibly to some, their greatest possession is their job. The ability to make money, and having a certain number in your bank account. Let’s be honest – we live in a world where money moves things, where social status is a goal and where your bank account determines your decisions, your position, your surroundings – your life.
The Bible in Ecclesiastes says that “what has been will be again, what has been done before will be done again, there is nothing new under the sun”. Things repeat, how people in the past operated and their motives are similar today as they were 20, 50, 100, or 1000 years ago – things are cyclical and nothing is new – Paul understood this and thus he says “But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss – I consider everything a loss”
- KNOWING CHRIST
Paul, a Pharisee with great standing, with money, status, power, and a great education writes that he considers everything that he had been able to acquire, whatever were his gains from his effort0s a loss. He considers everything as a loss.
– Paul knew what loss meant based on his experience in having and not having, in being in want and being found with enough and in having money and not having any.
There is a difference between knowing about Christ and knowing Christ. We can learn and know the attributes of Christ
But do we truly know him – Do we know who He is and not just know about him? How can we know if we have an intimate relationship with Jesus?
- When we see His power manifesting in our lives and how he is able to forgive us for our sins
- When His grace is extended to all of us even when we don’t deserve it
- When His mercy has delivered us from our sins and has set us free
- When His love changes us and because of His love we are different now
- When we can acknowledge his majesty and worship him for who He is
When we know that His power is infinite, His grace is for me, His mercy has set me free, His love has changed me and I can
- Worship Him for who he is what he has done
- Praise him for what He is doing in my life right now
- and Exalt Him for what He will do
Knowing Christ means my past, present and future is secure, it means that I have an intimate relationship with him – Knowing Christ means that He calls me his friend –
Do you know this person?
- This person was the second of three children
- Parents where Jerry and Nola – missionaries Jerry died in a plane accident
- 1986 married Miriam Lee – have 4 children
- This person has written 10 books
- In 2002 and for 10 years he was the pastor of the Spanish Congregation in a Mega Church
- He has received 5 Latin Grammys
- He has been in concert halls and stadiums in Argentina, Panama, Mexico, Ecuador, Colombia y El Salvador
Who is he? Marcos Witt
Knowing Jesus goes beyond just information, beyond bullet points, dates and numbers. All these things lead to knowing about someone but no to a relationship with that person.
Knowing Christ is not about head knowledge is about heart knowledge –
Knowing Christ means knowing that He does not want you for your works, for your contributions, for how smart, strong or agile you are. He does not want you because you can teach, or you can lead a meeting – When we know Christ we know that this is not the type of relationship He seeks to have with us –
When we Know Christ –
- Psalms “Sit still and know that I Am God” To meditate in His word
- If you know me you know the Father – Prayer and communication
- I no longer consider you slaves who do not know the master’s plans but friends – share His plans and ministry
- For me to die is gain to live is Christ – at the end of my journey, I will be with Him with Christ my eternal friend and my God.
2. GAIN CHRIST
I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ
When we press on to know Christ the way He wants us to know Him then it’s inevitable to consider everything else that’s in our lives rubbish – the word that Paul uses in more like filth, garbage fit only for dogs. Can you consider what you have, what you hold dear and precious to your to be rubbish – to be garbage?
Paul says “I consider them garbage, all those accolades, all those accomplishments, all those awards, all my material things, my house, my car, my possessions, my money, all my knowledge, my education all those things that the world considers to be important my social status all those things – compare to the my relationship with Christ – all of that is rubbish – so that I may gain Christ!”
What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul? Mat 16:26
How do we define Gain? A resource or advantage acquired or an increase: profit
What do we gain? Jesus
There is a simple equation: Time+relationship+faith-desires=Jesus
To gain Christ we need to spend time with Him, to hear him, to speak with Him, to know Him, to obey Him
To gain Christ means we have a relationship with Him, He is no stranger to our success and our failures. He is invited to everything we do and to the innermost places in our heart and life – He knows my deepest and darkest secrets
To gain Christ means that I put my complete and total trust in Him, no matter the circumstances, no matter the problems, no matter my emotions, regardless of what others think, say or do, I have and I will continue to put my trust in Christ and my faith is in the personhood of Jesus Christ.
To gain Christ I must decrease and he must increase. My desires and my wants should not be my own anymore but they should be the will and desire of Jesus. More of Him less of me.
When we put all these things together we can begin to see that the by-product of this is that I gain Christ – I gain Christ as My Lord and Savior.
To gain Christ means that I gain the covering that comes from the death and resurrection of Jesus. The gain that I, you, me and the whole world gets is to be found not guilty because Christ died for our sins. Our gain is to be found righteous and justified through the spilling of the blood of Christ in the cross and to have eternal life because he defeated death. And because He resurrected, we have the opportunity to gain a new life through faith in Christ.
To be rich in Christ means to be rich in him alone – I am Rich –
3. BE FOUND IN CHRIST
and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.
Knowing Jesus opens the door so that we can be found in Christ. This means that our identity, who we are, what we do and how we think will be linked to Him if we are found in Him. In other words, all that we are will be completely inseparable from Christ. To be found in Christ means that no matter what is happening around me, no matter who is looking for me if the enemy is knocking on my door, where is he going to find me? In Christ. If sin is knocking on my door where will it find me? In Christ. If illnesses are knocking on my door, where will they find me? If sorrow is knocking on my door, where will it find me? If problems are knocking on my door, where will it find me? If death is knocking on my door, where will it find me? In Christ! I will be found in Christ…
The song we sang this morning says – My Hope is Built on Nothing Else, the last verse says –
When he shall come with trumpet sound
oh may I then in him be found
just in his righteousness alone
faultless stand before the throne
Do you know Christ? Have you gained what He has to offer through His resurrection? Are you found in Christ?