I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know!
* * * *
No believer always lived for Christ from the beginning. They began to do so only when the Holy Spirit convicted them of sin, and when by grace they were brought face to face with the dying Saviour making a propitiation for their guilt. From the moment of the new and celestial birth the man begins to live to Christ, lives as a new creation.
* * * *
Jesus is to true believers the one pearl of great price, for whom we are willing to part with all that we have. He has so completely won our love, that our heart beats for Him alone; we live for His glory, and we are prepared to die in defence of his gospel; He is the pattern for our lives, and the model after which we desire to sculpt our character.
Paul’s words mean more than most men think. they are deep and imply that the aim and end of his life was Christ. Even more than this, his very life itself was Jesus.
In other words, he “eats, drinks, and sleeps Jesus Christ”. Jesus was his very breath, the soul of his soul, the heart of his heart, the life of his life. Can we, as professing Christians, echo this? *l should be able to say honestly that for me to live is Christ.* ln my ministering to others, who is my prime focus? Who do l hope to please? If Christ is not the main reason , then l have lost it big time!Consider your business, whatever it is – are you doing it for Christ? Most times our business is done for self-aggrandizement and for family advantage. We need to pause from our daily activities often, and ask ourselves, “what is the main reason behind what l do for a living? Is Jesus the main reason?” I am afraid that for the Christian it must be.
* * * *
For someone who professes to live for Christ alone; how can l still live for another object without committing a spiritual adultery?
There are many who carry out this principle in some measure; but who is there that can dare to say that he has lived *wholly* for Christ as the apostle Paul did? I hope l can, in complete honesty. Yet, this alone is the true life of a Christian; its source, its sustenance, its manifestation, its end, all gathered up in one word – Christ Jesus. May it be our pursuit.