The Christian in this has "the consolation of Israel," and has more left in Christ than he has lost; but the worldling loses all without compensation.3. Here we have the key phrase of St. Paul's writings; but it is only a continuation of the Master's teaching (John 15)(1) This has reference to the believer's legal condition before God. So Jesus Christ cannot be taken away from any part of the system of Divine truth, without doing irreparable injury to the beauty and perfection of the whole Christian system — "for to Him gave all the prophets witness." It is most comfortable, for here is comfort at all times and in all cases (Philippians 1:21).2. You will not commit your money to a stranger of whom you have only a good opinion. The stability of its objects and the permanence of its use. (b)Certainty; but Christ is unchangeable. What must we do to win Christ?6. This is the refuge of many of our youth particularly. Winslow, D. D.I. What God teaches must be absolute truth. In Him are both suitability and fulness. He had a high position and brilliant prospects. If not, seek it at once (James 1:5; Proverbs 2:3-7).2. Every kind of knowledge is useful in its place; for it is to the mind what light is to the eyes; but this exceeds all other. This is true in regard to worldly knowledge; much more to heavenly.I. On this principle the humblest disciple may be occupied with loftier contemplations than ever occur to an irreligious philosopher.2. Boston, D. D.I. Peace? )Loss for gainD. Experimental and appropriating; this is unintelligible to carnal men. (1) He is God, "the true God and eternal life;" therefore His excellence is infinite. USES.1. THE POSSIBILITY OF WINNING THIS PRIZE. There is no necessary connection between science and sanctity, but that between the knowledge of Christ and purity and charity is inevitable.5. The loss of all that St. Paul counted gain. That you may win Him He sends forth His servants with invitations; He offers His blessings gratuitously; He throws a thousand impediments in your downward course, so that you may go to Him.IV. IN THE DISPOSITION IT CREATES.1. It often happens with new converts that their impressions and resolutions are like the early blossoms of spring, which perish in the bitter winds. It imports that we are naturally without Him (Ephesians 2:12). Naturally it is not so. When he speaks of the past history of the world it is to show how it was a preparation for Him. This is the excellent effect of this excellent knowledge.(D. All these figures had their substance in their great Antitype. (Matthew 13:45-46). (5)His enemies.2. Happiness and usefulness depend upon it. This is the excellent effect of this excellent knowledge.(D. (3) To attain it. That which will turn everything to our advantage — "All things work together for good." Would you possess this knowledge? He could feel the branch giving way. Is this so? O. Thompson.To win Christ is the supreme achievement of this life.I. (1) If Christ be gain then we may make some losses for Christ if we may not have them and Him too (Hebrews 11:26; Mark 10:29-30). if not the excuse will not screen the sinner in the day of God's visitation. )Winning ChristCanon Miller.The world has ever shown curiosity with regard to the inner lives of its great men. None but Christ for pardon, acceptance, life. If ever a man could have gone to heaven without Christ it was he. Our natures are renewed, and not only the favour and fellowship of God restored, but His image also (Titus 3:5-6; 2 Peter 1:4; Hebrews 12:10).4. (3) Worldly reputation depend, upon the uncertain thoughts of others and may be easily stained; but the Christian shall shine with eternal honour. So identified with the TRUTH, that when he gained Him he gained the highest knowledge.II. T. Lynch.If we rightly reject the world it is because, in the pure processes of our spirit, we have taken from it its nutriment. TO BE FOUND IN CHRIST is it the fitting sequel of winning Christ.1. There is a great distinction between all human morality and the morality of the gospel. An induction of particulars. F. B. Tinling, B. A.Men who have made the greatest sacrifices for the cause of Christ have hardly been conscious of them. (1) You are in earnest as regards the end with reference to which you estimate what is gain (ver. The marrow of the gospel lies in the pronouns "my" and "ours." Lyth, D. D.I.IT SURPASSES all other.II.IS ONLY COMMUNICATED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD.III.EXALTS THE NATURE OF MAN.IV.BRINGS PEACE, HOLINESS, SALVATION.V.IS PERMANENTLY VALUABLE.VI.IS WORTH ANY SACRIFICE.VII.SECURES ETERNAL GAIN.(J. That knowledge of Christ which is not an interest in Him is mere opinion which is dubious and uncertain. Most universal (1 Corinthians 2:22-23; 1 Timothy 4:8).3. We should seek this certainty. This is often done by those who evince an unconquerable repugnance to accept the gospel. (e)Be much in seeking God (James 1:5). (5) He can do for us what no other can, procure pardon for sin, peace with God, a right to heaven.3. You must count all this but loss for it.2. And then it is not a thing or a system, but an individual. Remember that St. Paul did not write these words in the first fervour and flush of a new conversion. The language suggests a goal and a starting post; that "I may win Christ," the goal or end I have been seeking to reach; that "I may be found in Him," ready not only for resistance to old adversaries, but for a new start and onward movement towards Divine perfection. The heathen world is an evidence of this. The flesh.3. He cried again; and again came the same answer. That which was before St. Paul was not Christianity but Christ. He cried again; and again came the same answer. (8) Life and self are loss without Christ.III. (1) To those that want it — be you persuaded to get it. May I become a par taker of Him? Man's desire is to be happy, and nothing outside of Christ is necessary to this end, for with Christ man may be happy and lack every earthly blessing (Philippians 4:13). Would that every anxious soul would go and do like wise!(J. (b)Because doubts are hurtful. (1) On the judgment; when this knowledge in Christ is exalted as the chiefest among ten thousand, and the richest treasure esteemed dross in comparison with His riches. To confirm this consider —1. (Canon Miller. Great thoughts in religion are necessary for man; and true religion must in its own nature have them. Boston, D. D.)To win ChristI.IS GREAT GAIN.II.IS THE NOBLEST OBJECT OF AMBITION.III.IS WORTHY OF EVERY SACRIFICE.IV.REQUIRES SELF-RENUNCIATION AND FAITH (ver. (c)They are the spring of apostasy. )The excellency of the knowledge of ChristJosiah Redford.If the soul be without knowledge it is not good. (3) We must wrestle and win as those do who strive for the mastery (Ephesians 6:12-14). Proofs and illustrations. (2) Those who strive not to communicate this knowledge. Daily providence.4. The magnitude of the evils it averts and the value of the benefits it secures. Wealth? (2) This gain may be gotten at a cheap rate (Isaiah 55:1; Revelation 3:18).(T. (2) We must fight and win as soldiers — "The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence," etc. With affection, counting all things loss and dung. (1) You are in earnest as regards the end with reference to which you estimate what is gain (ver. THOSE WHOSE GRAND OBJECT IS TO WIN CHRIST, WILL COUNT ALL BUT DUNG THAT COMES IN COMPETITION WITH THIS BARGAIN. "We are no scholars" is often only an excuse for negligence and indifference. This is for His glory, and that others may fall in love with Him.2. (4) This interest is a most enriching interest — "All things are yours. (4) Self-righteousness, a house built on sand as Paul found it. By faith man becomes one in Christ, and when God looks upon him, He looks upon him as being "a man in Christ. So identified with SPIRITUAL INFLUENCE, that when he gained Him his whole nature was filled with power and gladness. (2) To the inward truth of religion. (2)Infinitely, without limit. By Him we are made heirs of eternal life (Romans 8:17).II. (2) The refuge of carnal ease. )The excellency of the knowledge of ChristJ. (b)Because doubts are hurtful. On this principle the humblest disciple may be occupied with loftier contemplations than ever occur to an irreligious philosopher.2. Clarkson, B. D.When we are in the dark we are glad of candlelight, and glow worms will make a fair show in our eyes; but when the sun is risen and shines in his full strength, then candlelight seems needless or offensive, and the worms that glittered in the dark, made no better show than other vermin. What must we lose to gain Christ?4. It often happens with new converts that their impressions and resolutions are like the early blossoms of spring, which perish in the bitter winds. He is the fountain of life.1. Clarkson, B. D.)The more excellent knowledgeO. What must we lose to gain Christ?4. "(2) But this has also a moral reference, being quickened in Christ from the death of sin to the life of righteousness. Buchanan, D. D.)The relation of the knowledge of Christ to the gospel schemeJ. Some have one thing, and others another in His place. In Him are hid all the treasures of them.2. (2) On the affections. When He knocketh, open (Revelation 3:10).(T. Study the excellences of His person, the advantages of His offices, the riches of His grace. "The things which are seen are temporal," etc. Lyth, D. D.I.IT SURPASSES all other.II.IS ONLY COMMUNICATED BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD.III.EXALTS THE NATURE OF MAN.IV.BRINGS PEACE, HOLINESS, SALVATION.V.IS PERMANENTLY VALUABLE.VI.IS WORTH ANY SACRIFICE.VII.SECURES ETERNAL GAIN.(J. So Livingstone, as late as 1857, said, "I never made a sacrifice;" and Hudson Taylor, the leader of the China Inland Mission, has publicly made the same statement of himself. Christ is coveted and sought as gain. For reproof of —(1) Those who take no pains to get it (Matthew 16:26; Luke 16:25). Fiducial. The day of judgment.(W. (f) The Christian's portion is but an earnest. Two points of saving knowledge exemplify this. Clarkson, B. D.When we are in the dark we are glad of candlelight, and glow worms will make a fair show in our eyes; but when the sun is risen and shines in his full strength, then candlelight seems needless or offensive, and the worms that glittered in the dark, made no better show than other vermin. (2) If we win not Christ we gain nothing and lose all (Matthew 16:26).II. It may be a good opinion, but it is not certainty. The loss of all that St. Paul counted gain. Watson.Its notes are —I. What an instance of the influence of Divine grace I He had been Christ's bitterest foe. Clarkson, B. D.)The more excellent knowledgeO. You will rarely find two scientists perfectly to coincide. (2)This interest is the one thing necessary.All things must go for necessaries (Matthew 6:25). Are wisdom and knowledge valuable? (4) Self-righteousness, a house built on sand as Paul found it. (5) We must trade and win as merchants do (Mark 10:22).2. (1)Perfectly, without a shadow of imperfection. We should seek this certainty. (2)By grant (Acts 2:26).3. Extensive. )The great prizeL. (3) To attain it. )To win Christ and be found in HimR. Two questions arise.1. "(2) Without some application there can be no interest and benefit to us. Christ is in us the hope of glory. Lynch. Redford. "This is life eternal," etc.VI. Paul had just enumerated several things, whose possession, while he was without Christ, gave him a certain sort of pleasure.II. (4)Life in death, and all this for us, not for devils or angels.IV. (4) To grow in it. This is often done by those who evince an unconquerable repugnance to accept the gospel. Secular knowledge is valuable because it averts temporal calamities and promotes temporal comfort, but the knowledge of Christ has reference to the interests of the immortal soul.5. What is gain to me is what puts me on a right footing with God. He that hath the Son hath life.5. As he was failing he grasped a little branch of some bush that was growing halfway down. (c)It is a support to have the darker way of applying Christ and His benefits, when we have not the full certainty that they belong to us.2. In the gospel we get not only perfect precepts, but the motive union with Christ. That all the knowledge of Christ that brings not to Him is but splendid ignorance according to the Word.2. If ever a man could have gone to heaven without Christ it was he. This is always the object which St. Paul sets before himself and his readers; hence the vital interest of his life and writings.3. The heathen world is an evidence of this. "The world by wisdom knew not God," but he that hath seen Christ, hath seen the Father.3. In Him are hid all the treasures of them.2. WHAT KNOWLEDGE OF CHRIST IS THAT WHICH IS SO EXCELLENT? THEY ARE TRULY WINNERS, LOSE WHAT THEY WILL, WHO GAIN CHRIST. Peace? When the apostle wrote these words he had been serving Christ for thirty years, and had derived no earthly advantage, but had suffered every earthly loss for Him. (2) Consider what you are without Him. The abundance of the ungodly is their curse. (2) It is distinguished from the knowledge of the law of Moses (John 1:17; Hebrews 10:1). All sheaves bow to Him. Buchanan, D. D.If the real worth and dignity of our knowledge in any department depend on the subject to which our thoughts are directed, it were easy to show that the religious peasant may find a nobler subject of thought in the structure of a flower, than the irreligious philosopher finds in the structure of a world!(J. THINGS HE HAD GAINED BY THE EXCHANGE.IV. The day of judgment.(W. (2) Those who part with Christ for temporal profit (Hebrews 12:16).2. (2)In His love. Redford.It is said of Phidias, the celebrated sculptor, that in preparing the design, and in executing the elaborate carving of the shield of Minerva, over the portico of the Acropolis of Athens, he so curiously wrought and intertwined his own name with the work, that it could not be obliterated or taken out anywhere without injuring the whole. What so great as a kingdom? USES.1. L. Nye.One night an inquirer, long under deep conviction, but still unsaved, dreamt that he was walking along the edge of a terrible precipice, and fell over it into a terrible abyss. But unblessed of God it is delusive and borders close on misery. Christ is a friend that will help in all cases. What is gain to me is what puts me on a right footing with God. He could feel the branch giving way. (2) His character, also, and office and work (1 Corinthians 2:2; John 1:14). Admiration. It is in all its parts knowledge for us. Admiration. (3) Worldly pleasure. (2) We should not murmur when others go away with other things, if we have Christ (Psalm 17:14-15).3. F. B. Tinling, B. It is not enough to count Christ as gain. The only uncertainty is that which man's depraved nature invents.3. It was exactly so with St. Paul.II. He who knows Christ knows —1. The excellency of Christ naturally fires gracious hearts, because —, (1)All their hopes are in Him, and(2)all their desires.II. (1) If Christ be gain then we may make some losses for Christ if we may not have them and Him too (Hebrews 11:26; Mark 10:29-30). Let every spark of knowledge kindle zeal and love. What so great as a kingdom? IT IS INTIMATELY CONNECTED WITH OUR JUSTIFICATION. Effectual. (2) If we win not Christ we gain nothing and lose all (Matthew 16:26).II. L. They have made a good choice that have received Christ.3. Per instruction. Christ is appropriated as gain. The abundance of the ungodly is their curse. Boston, D. D.I. Daille.According to the design of God the advantages and sacraments of the law are of no avail since the manifestation of His Son, and that those who now beguile themselves with them lose their time and their trouble, as completely as though, after the rising of the sun, they still used the light of a lamp; or as if, in the strength of manhood, a person were retained in all the exercises and sports of childhood.(J. Christ was painted in hieroglyphics and read by the Jews in all their ceremonial observances. This is necessary for us with respect —(1) To the outward truths of religion, because —(a)Doubts are both afflictive and sinful. TO BE FOUND IN CHRIST is it the fitting sequel of winning Christ.1. As the loadstone draws iron, so does Christ the sinner.4. He is the Creator, and as the creator of a thing, must be greater than the thing created, so the knowledge of Christ must be superior to that of nature.2. (2) If we win not Christ we gain nothing and lose all (Matthew 16:26).II. THE VALUE OF THE PRIZE. Reproof to those who neglect or despise this knowledge. There is a great distinction between all human morality and the morality of the gospel. To apprehend Christ yours on good grounds is the excellency of this knowledge.3. Boston, D. D.)That I may win ChristT. But this knowledge is easily attained, and he who increaseth it increaseth joy (Psalm 119:72, 162; Jeremiah 15:16).Conclusion: Is this knowledge so excellent, then?1. In Him are hid all the treasures of them.2. Clarkson, B. D.)The more excellent knowledgeO. (1)It converts the soul (Acts 26:18);(2)regenerates (Colossians 3:10);(3)humbles; other puffs up (Isaiah 6:5; Job 40:4; Revelation 1:17);(4)encourages (Psalm 9:10; Ephesians 1:13; 2 Timothy 1:12).4. if not the excuse will not screen the sinner in the day of God's visitation. Inquiry. Is most pleasant. There’s also a dangerous The true knowledge of Christ engages the heart and captivates the soul — "They that know Thy name will put their trust in Thee." What is gain to me is what puts me on a right footing with God. Of Columbus was intended to bring America into the inner lives of use. Received Christ.3, etc., all with reference to which you estimate is! 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