Remembering and Forgetting
Where would we be without the Lord giving us his grace-filled Word for us to continue down the victory’s pathway in our walk with him? As Christians we need to “press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14). In that very same context of Scripture, the Lord tells us that we need to be “forgetting those things which are behind and reaching unto those things which are before” (v. 13). Yes, success as well as failure in our Christian lives need not define us, nor detour us; we need to remember that we have not “already attained” and as we are honest with ourselves, we certainly are not “already perfect” (v. 12). The Apostle Paul kept his spiritual vision clear in his approach to his Christian life; he wanted to pursue his high calling by distancing himself from the pride of past achievements as well as dismissing himself from those debilitating imperfections, brought on by his personal pursuits. That quest of pressing toward HIS mark was predicated on keeping his eyes closely fixed on the prize of the high calling of God IN Christ Jesus. With that spiritual focus came a victorious attitude by cherishing a personal relationship with his Lord. The pressing, the pursuit, and the prize came with the PERSON of Christ “found IN HIM” (Philippians 3:9). His Christian life was defined, not in himself, but in the Lord: “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” (3:10-11). So, to Paul, it was all about the Lord; he was “crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, but Christ liveth in me” (Galatians 2:20). With new resurrected life in Christ, he knew that his high calling of God IN CHRIST JESUS was attainable, and so is yours as well - IN HIM.
When we have a spiritual mindset in remembering the high calling of God that is before us, and at the same time forgetting those things which are behind, we are ready to PRESS ON IN CHRIST JESUS. When we have Scripture’s directives before us, there is the power of HIS resurrected life available to us “that ye may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus” (v. 12). The Lord will place within your reach the attainable mark of his high calling, and when we SEE IT, the spiritual minded believer will WANT IT. In simple terms, the Lord is telling us all, “there it is before you, do you see it NOW?” He wants us to remember that it’s in HIM, Christ Jesus, and not in ourselves. When we do focus on HIM, HIS PRIZED PERSON becomes visible, as well as our prized calling IN HIM; he allows us to see it all clearly with certainty. He then calls for our remembrance concerning his real intended purpose for our lives: there is no prized life like the one found in the Lord, totally surpassing our personal pursuits. He speaks to the spiritual ear all about the prized high calling that he is giving you: “It can only be attained IN ME and by me.” So, it’s all about remembering HIM, and forgetting the self-interests devoid of God in you; when you do, it comes to you, your high calling of God in Christ Jesus. God is challenging his people in “This one thing I do” (3:13). He is telling us: Just prize ME, by knowing me, following me, apprehending with me, and you will be attaining the prize of you high calling of God IN ME. It’s IN HIM and through HIM, by HIM, all by knowing HIM. So, let’s do some forgetting about self-prescribed interests, and press on with him and in him. So, do you see it now, the prize of the high calling of God? If not, start with Scripture: “Sir, we would see Jesus” (John 12:21). “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure” (2 Peter 1:10).