Yes doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord…
Its notes are —
I. CERTAINTY. Concerning moral and religious truth men have been most uncertain, and have bewildered themselves in endless speculations. And yet, on such subjects, certainty is of the utmost importance. The knowledge of Christ is certain. What God teaches must be absolute truth. He can neither deceive, nor be deceived. That Christianity is a system of Divine knowledge from God is proved —
1. By prophecy.
3. Experience (John 7:17).
II. MAJESTY AND GRANDEUR. Great thoughts in religion are necessary for man; and true religion must in its own nature have them. It is one of the characteristics of false religion to inculcate low thoughts of God and Divine things. Take the Christian conception of God — eternal, just, merciful, redeeming.
III. SUITABLENESS AND ADAPTATION. It is in all its parts knowledge for us. No kind of useful knowledge is to be undervalued. Many branches are of great importance. But all such is —
1. Partial. A king may be a criminal before God.
2. Temporary. But look at the knowledge of Christ.
(1) It is salvation for sinners.
(2) Communion with God for them who have been afar off.
(3) Comfort in affliction.
(4) Life in death, and all this for us, not for devils or angels.
IV. COMPREHENSIVENESS. It is not only light itself, it gives light to everything beside, not a star, but a sun. He who knows Christ knows —
1. Creation (Colossians 1:16).
2. History. Human writers narrate the events, in Christ their purpose is discovered. The call of Abraham, etc., all stand connected with the designs of providence in regard to the spiritual interests of mankind. The Roman Empire was designed to be the wide field for the triumphs of Christ. The voyage of Columbus was intended to bring America into the Christian fold.
3. Daily providence.
4. The sepulchre.
V. HOLINESS. Human knowledge does not sanctify, it often pollutes, and there is also a knowledge of Christ which leaves us in sin and under condemnation. But this knowledge leads to holiness. Conclusion:
1. Would you possess this knowledge? You must count all this but loss for it.
2. If this knowledge is incalculably excellent, then it is our duty to diffuse it.
Parallel VersesKJV: 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,
WEB: Yes most certainly, and I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord, for whom I suffered the loss of all things, and count them nothing but refuse, that I may gain Christ