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TCH MINI-STUDY: 29
 
KNOWING CHRIST?
 
Within the scriptures, we find three instances in which Christ said He did not know those who claimed to know Him.
 
First, the scriptures tell us, And he [Jesus] went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem. Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in [the wedding feast, and the kingdom], and shall not be able. When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are: Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets. But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are;depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out. And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God. And, behold, there are last [least important] which shall be first [most important], and there are first which shall be last (Luke 13:22-30). Here, Christ is teaching that in order to receive salvation, one must strive to enter into the kingdom via the straight gate; and that many shall seek to enter in, but shall not be able. In verse 24, Jesus uses the word straight, which means narrow, obstacles standing close about, and is derived from the Greek word histemi, which means to stand by. In context, the strait gate appears to be referring to narrowness, or, humility: the person who considers themselves as last, or least important, and Christ and His will as first, or most important. The strait gate of humility and self denial is also suggested in these words of Christ: ...If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life [by pursuing self will] shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:24-26). These individuals who Christ says He does not know, and denies entrance into salvation and the Kingdom of God, He also describes as workers of iniquity, and promptly commands them to depart from Him. Within these verses, Christ says He knows those who place the life and will of Christ and God the Father above our own.
 
Second, while giving the parable of the ten virgins, Jesus said, Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil [oil represents the Holy Spirit and presence of Christ, and those who are prayerfully looking for and expecting the sudden appearance of Christ and heir marriage to Him] with them: But the wise [those who were watching and prepared for the sudden appearance of Christ] took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage [supper and celebration]: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh (Matthew 25:1-13). Within the context of these verses,Christ says He knows those who have the Holy Spirit and are watching for and expecting His sudden return for Hi bride.
 
Third, in teaching the beatitudes to His disciples, Jesus said, Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it (Matthew 7:21-27). Within the context of these verses,Christ says He knows those who do the will of His Father in heaven, which is to not only hear, but do the sayings of Christ. We must ask, though, what are these sayings of Christ that we are supposed to do? The Lord detailed these sayings in what we refer to as the sermon on the mount; all the sayings found in Matthew 5:1 through Matthew 7:27. There are numerous sayings given by Christ to His disciples, so we shall mention only the major sections: those who are blessed and have a great reward in Heaven (Matt 5:1-12), the dsiciples described as salt and light (Mat 5:13-14), teaching about the law and righteousness (Mat 5:15-20, teaching about anger (Mat 5:21-26), sin comes from the heart (Mat 5:27-30), teaching about divorce (Mat 5:31-32), teaching about our speech (Mat 5:33-37), revenge (Mat 5:38-42), loving enemies (Mat 5:43-48), doing good deeds to glorify ourselves (Mat 6:1-4), prayer (Mat 6:5-15), fasting (Mat 6:16-18), priorities of our heart (Mat 6:19-21), clear spiritual vision (Mat 6:22-23), putting God first (Mat 6:24-34), judging others (Mat 7:1-6), prayer (Mat 7:7-12), salvation and humility (Mat 7:13-14), warning about false prophets (Mat 7:15-20), and the necessity of hearing and doing Christ's sayings (Mat 7:24-29). Carying out the sayings of Christ are an essential part of knowing the Lord.Jesus even told His own disciples, Ye [know me and] are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you (John 15:14). For further insight into these sayings of Christ, review the listed verses.
 
Scriptures give us other insights about knowing God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit:
 
Scriptures teach that even demonic spirits know Christ: And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him (Mark 1:23-26).
 
The apostle Peter exhorts us to grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever (2 Peter 3:18).
 
Christ taught His own disciples about God the the Kingdom of God. Jesus said to His disciples, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand (Luke 8:10).
 
The apostle Paul connected knowing Christ and the power of His resurrection with his own resurrection and eternal life. Paul wrote believers in Philippi: Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead (Philippians 3:8-11).
 
Knowing God and Christ results in eternal life, Jesus prayed to His heavenly Father, And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent (John 17:3). According to these words of Christ, eternal life is the result of knowing God the Father and the Son who He sent, Jesus Christ.
 
God spoke these words through the prophet Jeremiah: Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD (Jeremiah 9:23-24).
 
Through Jeremiah, God also said, ye shall seek me, and find me [and also know Me], when ye shall search for me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:13). Want to know God? Seek Him with your entire heart, with all you have.
 
Jesus emphatically taught that His own sheep know Him: I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine (John 10:14).
 
God the Father's new covenant in fact assures the believer of knowing Him. God spoke these words through the prophet Jeremiah: Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more (Jeremiah 31:31-34).
 
Although some may disagree, scriptures teach, as happened with the church in Galatia, that those who have known God can and do occasionally depart from the faith in Christ which they originally received. In writing the church in Galatia, Paul scolded some of the believers,because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant [slave to keeping the law], but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods. But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements [of the law], whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage [to the law]? (Galatians 4:6-9). Some of the Galatian believers had come to know God and His salvation through faith in Christ, yet they desired to abandon their faith and return to bondage to the works of the Jewish law. To the believers in Rome, the apostle Paul also spoke of those who knew God, refused to glorify Him, and eventually turned away from God and His ways, and reaped the reward of death: For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold [resist] the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools. And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves (Romans 1:18-24). Their outcome was clear: These unrighteous knew the judgment of God, and that they which commit such things are worthy of death, [yet they decided to] not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them (Romans 1:32).


 


 
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Jesus' Physical And Emotional Suffering On The Cross:
 
Prophecy: My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring? (Psalms 22:1). All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him (Psalms 22:7-8). For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet. I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me. They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture (Psalms 22:16-18).
 
Fulfillment: And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots. And sitting down they watched him there; And set up over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS. Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left. And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads, And saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross (Matthew 27:35-40). And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?(Matthew 27:46).
"Thus saith the LORD the maker thereof, the LORD that formed it, to establish it; the LORD is his name; Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not
(Jeremiah 33:2-3).