Knowing about something objectively and knowing it subjectively are two very different things. This applies to our knowing Jesus. Knowing about Jesus objectively means we possess some knowledge about Him. But knowing Jesus subjectively means we have firsthand experience of Him. We have personal knowledge of Him. This is the kind of knowing Christ wants us to have.
In this post, we’ll use two major examples to show the difference between knowing about Jesus and truly knowing Him.
1 Thessalonians 5:23—“And the God of peace Himself sanctify you wholly, and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Note 6 on complete: “God not only sanctifies us wholly but also preserves our spirit, soul, and body complete. Wholly is quantitative; complete is qualitative. Quantitatively, God sanctifies us wholly; qualitatively, God preserves us complete, i.e., He keeps our spirit, soul, and body perfect. Through the fall our body was ruined, our soul was contaminated, and our spirit was deadened. In God’s full salvation our entire being is saved and made complete and perfect. For this, God is preserving our spirit from any deadening element (Heb. 9:14), our soul from remaining natural and old (Matt. 16:24-26), and our body from the ruin of sin (4:4; Rom. 6:6). Such a preservation by God and His thorough sanctification sustain us to live a holy life unto maturity that we may meet the Lord in His parousia.”
In the Bible, the Greek word kosmos, translated world in English, has different meanings depending on its context. The meaning of kosmos we’ll discuss today is “system” or “organization,” specifically, the organized system set up by Satan to keep people from living for God.
God gave us a strong and unequivocal command concerning the world in 1 John 2:15: “Do not love the world.”
As Christians, we need to know clearly what the world is so we can guard ourselves from loving it and being deceived and distracted by it.
“God desires to have many sons, and God desires all these sons to be like that one Son of His. Then His Son will no more be the only Begotten, but the Firstborn among many brethren. God’s desire is to gain such a group of people. If we see this, we will realize the preciousness of man, and we will rejoice whenever man is mentioned. How God values man! Even He Himself became a man! God’s plan is to gain man. When man is gained by God, God’s plan is accomplished.”
From The Glorious Church, by Watchman Nee (mass-distribution ed., p. 7). Bibles for America gives this book away for free. You can order your free copy on our order page. You can also download a free PDF version here.
Recently, a blog reader asked us, “What does it mean to love God with all your heart?” Since this is an excellent and important question, one that many of us may have asked ourselves, we’ll respond here with a full post.
Mark 12:30 says,
“And you shall love the Lord your God from your whole heart and from your whole soul and from your whole mind and from your whole strength.”
Briefly speaking, this verse means that God wants us to love Him with our whole being.
1 John 1:2—“And the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify and report to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested to us.”
Note 3 on the eternal life: “Lit., the life the eternal. This life denotes the divine spiritual life, not the human soulish life or the physical life (see note 17 in Rom. 5). Eternal denotes not only duration of time, which is everlasting, without end, but also quality, which is absolutely perfect and complete, without any shortage or defect. Such an expression emphasizes the eternal nature of the divine life, the life of the eternal God. The apostles saw this eternal life and testified and reported it to people. Their experience was not of any doctrine but of Christ, the Son of God, as the eternal life, and their testimony and preaching were not of theology or biblical knowledge but of such a solid life.”
Cross-reference “d” on the eternal life directs us to several related verses. Here are four of them:
In the garden of Eden, God lost the part of His creation that He considered very good—mankind. Yet, though man fell under the wiles of Satan, God took a tremendous and necessary step to regain what was rightfully His, created for His own purpose from the beginning. This step is the step of redemption.
What is redemption?
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, to redeem is “to get or win back.” For example, let’s say you unintentionally park your car in a tow-away zone. When you return to your parking spot later, you discover your car is gone. You have the keys and the title deed, but you lost possession of your car. To regain it, you must fulfill the requirements of paying the citation and the fees charged by the towing company.
“Our salvation lies in looking away to the Lord Jesus and in seeing that the Blood of the Lamb has met the whole situation created by our sins and has answered it. That is the sure foundation on which we stand. Never should we try to answer Satan with our good conduct but always with the Blood. Yes, we are sinful, but, praise God! The Blood cleanses us from every sin.”
From The Normal Christian Life, by Watchman Nee (mass-distribution ed., p. 20). Bibles for America gives this book away for free. You can order your free copy on our order page.
We may be familiar with the phrase “witnessing for Christ,” but do we know why we should witness for the Lord and how we should do it?
Witnessing for Christ means simply telling others what we have personally seen and experienced of the Lord Jesus.
When we received Him as our Savior, our first reaction might have been to tell our best friend all about our salvation, that is, to witness to them of Christ. This is what Philip did in John 1:45. Immediately after he met the Lord, he found Nathaniel and said to him, “We have found Him of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, wrote, Jesus, the son of Joseph, from Nazareth.” To tell others about Christ in this way is to witness for Him.
Let’s look at why we should witness for Christ. We’ll also discuss some practical points on how to do it.
Romans 5:17—“For if by the offense of the one death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.”
Note 3 on reign: “The life we have received does not merely save us from a few things; rather, it enthrones us as kings to reign over all things. This is much higher than being saved in life. We have received righteousness objectively, but we still need to continually receive the abundance of grace so that we can reign in life subjectively. This reigning is defined in chs. 6—16; all the matters expounded there are the issue not of our endeavoring but of our receiving the abundance of grace.”