The Out-Resurrection

by A.E. Knoch

PAUL desired to know the power of Christ's resurrection as a present, practical experience, "if somehow" he "should be attaining to the resurrection out from among the dead" (Phil.3: 11). Immature believers, who have not been established in grace, have taken this as a future physical resurrection from death. This changes our glorious hope into a matter of attainment. Indeed, if Paul, when he wrote the epistle to the Philippians, was not sure of his attaining to this, how dare any of us even hope to reach it?

The Philippian epistle is concerned with conduct. No new revelations are found there. We are called upon to imitate Christ and Paul, Timothy and Epaphroditus. Paul had had confidence in his flesh (Phil.3:4-6). But now he sees that all this is a hindrance. He repudiates his own righteousness, he follows "in His steps" to the very death of Christ. Christ in life was connected with the system of religion which he had forsaken. He now desires to walk with Him in resurrection. In this way he wishes to "attain to the resurrection out from among the dead." We should all emulate his example

Let us not confound this present daily experience with that glorious and gracious expectation, which is founded on the death of Christ, not on our attainments. There is only one expectation (Eph.4:4) in this administration of purest grace. Those who claim superiority for themselves, such as belonging to the 144,000, while others are in the great company class, divide the ecclesia into two bodies. There is only one body (Eph.4:4). God give us grace to keep the unity of the spirit!

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