What Does It Take To Know Christ?

What does it take to know Christ?                                                                   Romans 9:1-5 (NLT)

know Christ
  • In Chapter 8-Paul spoke to the Christian Jews on:
    • Being Controlled by the Spirit of God
    • He gave them an out, that there is no obligation to live in a sinful nature
    • Nothing can separate us from God – Conjoined twins
    • There is no condemnation on those who are in Christ
  • Paul starts out by affirming that what he is saying is the truth
  • Statement: Romans 9:1 With Christ as my witness, I speak with utter truthfulness. My conscience and the Holy Spirit confirm it.
  • Paul is speaking to an audience of Jews that are all about the laws
  • It seems like Paul is speaking to a group of people who are choosing what truth to believe
  • Pretty much like the times we are living in – Where truth was suppressed and made to sound like something that it’s not. His words are not being taken for its value
    • I remember the good old days when truth was truth …when Contracts on napkins were a thing
    • Story of Lionel Messi (Argentine professional footballer)-Age 13, first contract with Barcelona in 2000 was on napkin -Worth $3million Euro
    • Have you ever wondered why contracts are getting larger?
    • We Christians need to be honorable, have integrity
    • Ephesians 5:15-17 – So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Don’t act thoughtlessly but understand what the Lord wants you to do.
    • The truth is being drowned by lies
    • And as Christians let our yes be yes and our no be no
    • We must uphold our morals higher than the world does
Know Christ
  • When you say you will do something, please do it because if you don’t, you are just like the world 
  • Paul is speaking to an audience that knows Christ and one that is aware of the Holy Spirit
  •  Romans 9:2 My heart is filled with bitter sorrow and unending grief 
  • Paul has great sorrow and unceasing anguish in his heart when he thinks of whom they are rejecting
  • It’s so painful to Paul that he uses the statement of no return “I would be willing to be forever cursed—cut off from Christ! —if that would save them.
    • This statement is deeper that just the face value – The idea of a Jew being accursed was not something the Jews would even think about – To them this violates Gods Word
    • From Paul it’s a statement of hurt – Like a Parent who is willing to bear the sins of his or her kid by trading places with them
  • This statement doesn’t come lightly – It’s a statement of endearment
  • Paul speaks of the Christ that he has come to know. The one that had saved his life and corrected the course of his life
  • Christ was the best thing that happened to Paul
  • He would give it all up to have someone get a glimpse of what it is to be fully devoted to the Lord
  • Paul is speaking from the Heart of Christ
    • Galatians 2:20 Nkjv- I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
  • Paul feels what God feels, His Joy, His hurt – Break my heart for what breaks Yours
  • Prayer night- Eva spoke of God being a lover of our soul
    • Praying not because we have to but praying because we need to commune with God
    • Spending time with Him – That which cost you nothing (We don’t give God our leftovers)
    • Psalms 23:1-3 The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
    • We only think of what we get, but where is the Lord’s heart here?
  • Paul is willing to do whatever it takes to bring this point home
  • Just like us preachers, we go to a great length to bring you an understanding of God’s Word so you can fall in love with Him  
  • He understands the length at which God had to go to rescue the Jews people
    • They are Gods adopted Children by God himself – Us as well*
    • He made a covenant with them
    • He gave them His Law – His written direction
    • He gave them the privilege of worshipping Him and receiving His wonderful promises
    • Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are their ancestors – They have role models
    • Jesus Christ Himself was an Israelite
    • They are setup for success
  • It’s almost like Paul is asking them- What else do you need?
  • What else does it take for you to know that you are loved by the almighty God?
  • Do I need to give up my salvation – The promise I have inherited through Christ, for you to understand this?
  • Paul finds this rejection very hard, because the merciful God has given them everything
  • As I read this, I can’t help but see the parallels of this call to the Jews as a call to us here and now
  • The prodigal son story – Luke 15:11-22
    • Jesus tells about a story of a man who had 2 sons
    • The younger one asked for inheritance
    • When he had spent it all, there was a famine
    • It was bad – pig pods bad
    • He comes to his senses, and he knows that his father’s servants have shelter and food
    • He formulates this long explanation and lowers himself to a servant’s position
    • Luke 15:20-22  (NLT)  “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. 21 His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son.[a]’ “But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger and sandals for his feet.
  • I want you to remember one thing – that the Jews hated Paul
    • They harassed him, they stirred up lies, they were violent against him
    • Yet He still loved them passionately – A man who understood what transformation was
    • He knew the transforming Power of Christ –
    • A man that remembered daily who He used to be
  • What does it take to know Christ?
  • Acknowledging that you are loved by our Father
  • John 3:16( Ampc) For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten ([a]unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.
  • 1 John 4:10 (Nkjv) – In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins
  • Romans 5:8 (Nkjv) – But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us
  • Realizing that your father waits for your return
  • The point that Paul seems to be making is that Israel has failed despite all their natural and God given advantages. This makes the fall even more dramatic as Israel was equipped with enough tools to guide them on the right path
  • This evening you have great advantage – Don’t waste it
  • What does it take to know Christ?
  • A fully submitted heart to God!

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