Pastor Bill Meadows
June 25, 2013
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philip.3:13-14).
Today there are more people who say that they are saved. They are just sitting around; just twiddling their thumbs and doing nothing for the Lord.
Paul tells us if we are saved we want to press toward a mark. That mark is seeing people saved and doing the things that please the Lord.
So, if one is saved by faith, that faith will move us to work for the Lord. “Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.” (James 2:18).
This verse tells me if we are saved we won’t be sitting around twiddling our thumbs.
Paul was one who never sat around twiddling his thumbs.
Before Paul was a saved he used all his energy to kill the Christians. Then on the road to Damascus, his life was changed.
The energy Paul used to persecute the Christians was now being used to see people saved.
Before we all were saved, we went to the ends of this earth to do the things to please the devil. Now that we are saved we need to use that same energy to see people saved.
We also need to use that same energy to get closer to the Lord. “That I may know him”. Too many Christians are just sitting around just polishing their halo, where they need to be working for the Lord.
Many today think they have already arrived at that point where God wants them to be.
But Paul tells us in verse 12 that he hadn’t arrived yet at the point he needed to be.
“Not as though I had already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.”
Paul was one of the greatest missionaries man has ever known. Here he says I have not reached that point. So how can people say that they have arrived at this point, when they are sitting around twiddling their thumbs and not serving the Lord?
What must I do to get to that mark Paul was talking about?
The first thing we need to do is forget those things in the past. That is a problem with many today. They can’t forget the past. If one is going to press toward that mark we must forget what happen in the past.
If one can’t forget the past, this will be a handicap to him or her in the future.
Paul tells us that he is pressing toward a mark. This is like running a race and you are running toward the finish line. But our prize is not an earthly prize but a heavenly prize.
Paul’s mark was to be caught up to be with the Lord. That is my reward.
If we press toward that mark we will see people saved and when the Lord comes we won’t be ashamed. “And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming” (1 John 2:28).