Thursday, June 13

Take hold of Jesus

Scripture: 1 Kings 13-14, 2 Chronicles 12, Philippians 3

Philippians 3:12–14 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Observation

Paul’s goal was to know Christ and experience the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering (v. 10-11).

Then he said that he hadn’t fully achieved this, but “I press on to take hold of that for which Christ took hold of me.”

The word “take hold” got my attention.  It is the Greek word katalambano, which combines the prefix kata, which is used to intensify a word, and lambano, which means “to take, or receive.”  It means “to make something one’s own; to win, attain; take hold of.”  

Jesus took hold of Paul.  Jesus made Paul His own.  This motivated Paul to take hold of Jesus and His purposes for Paul.  

Application

To have Paul’s passion for Jesus we need Paul’s experience with Jesus.  I don’t mean an identical experience (an encounter on the road to Damascus).  I mean that we need our own experience of Jesus taking us as His own—our own encounter with Jesus that leaves us forever in awe of Him, knowing that we are His.  This happens differently for each of us, but must happen.  

I believe that this is the primary reason for the lack of passion for Jesus, the lackadaisical and lukewarm state of most Christians.  Either they have not experienced the call of Jesus, or they have forgotten it.  Meet Jesus—it changes everything!  Experience Jesus and you’ll live with a new passion, a drive to take hold of Him and His purposes for you.  

When Jesus takes hold of you, your primary passion in life is to take hold of Him: to know Him, to experience His power and His sufferings, to take hold of His purposes for you.

Prayer: Lord, remind me every day that I am Yours, that You have taken hold of me, and motivate me to take hold of You!  I pray for a revival, a move of God that will help those who are far from God and those who are lukewarm to experience Jesus.  Take hold of them so they will take hold of You!