Knowing Christ #2
For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.
1 Corinthians 2:2
(see the first part of this series here)
There are, in these words of the Apostle Paul, at least three things which he underscores. First of all, he expresses the object of his desire, and that object is Jesus Christ and Him crucified. It is the person of the Lord Jesus Christ who should take center stage as the object of our desire. The second thing that the apostle sets before us here is the knowledge of the person and work of our Lord. The pursuit of the Christian is to pursue the knowledge of the person of Jesus Christ, and his sin-bearing, life-giving work on the cross for all will lay hold of Christ by faith. Such knowledge of which Paul speaks is not simply to know certain facts about Christ but to know Christ in the sense of being in fellowship with Him as those whose sins have been forgiven by Him. The third thing that Paul touches upon in these words is his own personal determination, indeed his ultimate resolution, namely to know nothing among the Corinthians but Jesus Christ and Him crucified.
The essence of what Paul intends to say here is that there can be no greater ambition in the heart of the true servant of Jesus Christ than to know Him in all the beauty of His person and in all the glory and perfection of His work on behalf of sinners. The Apostle is declaring that there is no other knowledge more excellent. To be sure, Paul was not condemning all other knowledge and human learning in the arts and sciences in which he himself was so accomplished in his own day. But what he was saying was that nothing else could be compared to or compete with the need for all people to know, in the most intimate and fullest sense possible, who Jesus Christ is and what He accomplished in his dying on the cross to save sinners.
The greatest need that men, women, boys, and girls have is to know Christ as Paul knew and preached Him. Why is this so? It is because we have all broken God’s law. It is because we are all sinners who stand condemned before our Creator God, and therefore need to be saved from our sins and given new life in Jesus Christ. The Bible declares to us in Hebrews 9:27 that it is God’s appointment for all of us to die, but after death a judgment is coming for all.
The Apostle Paul came to Corinth knowing that the only hope for the Corinthians, and indeed the only hope for all of us, is to know Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and by that knowledge to be delivered from our sin, both its bondage and its consequences. Compared to this reality and need, nothing is more necessary, more important, more crucial than to know Christ and Him crucified. My friend, do you know this Jesus of Whom the Bible speaks? Have you received Him by faith, and are you trusting in His person and work as your only hope in the face of death and the day of judgment? Is the Lord Jesus the greatest desire of your never-dying soul? We here at Christ Church desire above all else for you to know the Lord Jesus Christ and Him crucified. We invite you to join us this Lord’s day in worship of the One Who alone has the words of eternal life, and who alone, above all other things, you need to know!