Knowing Jesus

“I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection…” Philippians 3:10

Before the Lord met him on the road to Damascus, Apostle Paul was quite confident that he could attain eternal life on the basis of his circumcision, his pedigree (he was an Israelite, of the tribe of Benjamin), his position as a Pharisee, his zeal and his works. His “confidence in the flesh” (3:4), as he puts it, was not only very important to him but also something to boast about.

Fast forward to his post-Damascus’ life we see a dramatic change in the way he views his life, his status and his past achievements. The things that were once an advantage and a gain to him in the pursuit of salvation, he now counts them all as garbage “because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus…” (3:8). The only thing that matters now, is Christ and only Christ. Realising that “Christ has made him His own” (3:12b) and that by faith (which also comes from God v.9) the righteousness of Jesus is given to him, Paul now says that to know Him is to know the power of Christ’s resurrection.

Now, if we affirm that the resurrection of Jesus Christ has power, we can also say that the power of His resurrection is the power of salvation. It is the power to deliver us from our sins and spiritual death. To the Christians in Rome, he writes that: “He (Jesus) was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification” (Rom. 4:25). Moreover, “if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you”.

While we are all awaiting the Lord’s return and with it the ultimate and final stage of our salvation and resurrection, I pray and hope that as we look deeper into these realities the Holy Spirit will awaken in us a renewed desire to experience the power of His resurrection today and every day.