Sharing Becomes You

“that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, 11 if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead…” Phil 3:10-11

Introduction

It is important for God’s elect in the Gospel of God’s Righteousness which constitutes Jesus’ baptism, death and resurrection to know that Jesus is the greatest gift that God willingly shared with humanity.  Born as a Man on earth, the Son of God came to share His life with all men.  Through His baptism, Jesus took the sins of the world upon His body, experienced death for every individual person and was raised from the dead to secure our justification of faith in the righteousness of God.

Likewise, elects born of the Spirit of Christ ought to share their life with others.  God has not stopped sharing His Son through us to those who believe in the righteous act of Jesus.  In our text, the Apostle Paul nicely sums up what the elects are supposed to be before sharing with others.  Christianity is definitely not a religion of rules and rituals that one must work to climb the ladder of heaven.  In fact, it is a personal growing relationship with the risen Christ that results in our growing conformity to Him.

Our goal is to know Him and to become like Him in order to share our lives.

  1. The Goal Of The Elect Is To Know Christ

Jesus said the same thing when He prayed, “and this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God and Jesus Christ Whom You have sent.”  John 17:3   Christianity is primarily a growing relationship with the infinite God Who has revealed Himself through the Gospel of God’s Righteousness.  As with all relationships, it begins with an initial encounter.  It is the same with our relationship with Jesus Christ.  Everyone has a story about their first encounter with Jesus.  However, we can know a lot about someone without knowing the person Himself.  As such, ‘sharing becomes you’  requires us to know who Jesus claim to be, things He did and taught, understand His baptism and death for our sins and that He was raised bodily from the dead.  Like any relationship, once we have met, we must cultivate that relationship. Cultivation requires time.   Closeness and intimacy are essential to foster strong relationship.  We cannot know the Triune God except as He has chosen to reveal Himself to us in the Word.  Heb 1:1-3

  1. The Goal Of The Elect Is To Be Like Christ

When we met our future mate, fall in love and got married, our life was permanently changed.  We would never be the same again.  It is the same, only much more so, when we meet Jesus as our Savior and Lord.  Jesus marks us for life, the more we spend growing to know Him, the more we are different.  Phil 3:10-11 shows the components and direction of the change that goes along with knowing Christ.

 a. To be like Christ requires knowing the power of His resurrection. Eph 2:4-6; Acts 26:18; Col 1:13

Changes to one’s life is accomplished not through human persuasion or through self improvement program.  They require the same mighty power of God that raised Jesus from the dead.

b. To be like Christ requires knowing the fellowship of His sufferings. 1 Pet 4:19 ; Rom 8:17-25 ; 2 Cor 1:5

Our Savior came to suffer for our sins by accepting the baptism of righteousness and to be crucified on the cross.  His entire ministry was marked by misunderstanding, rejection, opposition, betrayal and death.  While we can never enter into His suffering in the same way that He suffered,  yet there is a sense in which we can never be like Him if we do not go through suffering and learn to entrust our souls to our faithful Father in doing what is right.  Fellowship points to closeness or intimacy.

c. To be like Christ requires being conformed to His death. Gal 2:20 ;  Col 1:15 ; Rom 8:13

This phrase is related to ‘fellowship of His sufferings’  and grows out of it.  It also has another dimension which Paul describes in many other places, that of dying to sin and self through the baptism and death of Christ.  When we trust in Christ, we are placed ‘in Christ’ which means we are united with Jesus in His baptism, death and resurrection.  We have to live experientially what is true of us positionally.  This is what Jesus meant when He said that whoever follows Him must deny self and take up His cross daily.  Lk 9:23

d. To be like Christ will be realized in the resurrection from the dead. Phil 3:11 ; Rom 8:17-21

Paul is referring to the future resurrection of the righteous at the return of Christ, when our mortal bodies will be transformed into the likeness of Christ resurrected body, free from sin.  We will then share in His glory throughout eternity.

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