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Sermon #5605

An Experience of Christ

A Sermon on Christian Experience from Philippians 3:8


Philippians 3:8 ESV KJV
Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ (ESV)

Sermon Description

Christianity is to be central to one’s life and completely captivate thoughts, actions, and the way one lives. Unlike many other worldviews and religions, it is very experiential. Christians are called not only to know more about Christ, but they are called to experience the fullness of life that He provides. The gospel was intended to be woven into every aspect of the Christian’s being. In this sermon on Philippians 3:8 titled “An Experience of Christ,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones points to the Apostle Paul, reminding of what this looks like when played out in reality. He gave up everything and suffered persecution because of the gospel. When one becomes a Christian, the whole person is involved. Christ takes over all of one’s being when they submit to Him. Another way that salvation changes the Christian is that it is always increasing in value. How is this seen in Scripture? Paul was very honest in saying that Christ had made everything else in the world seem like trash in comparison. When the treasures of this world are compared to the excellencies of Christ, they are shown to be ultimately worthless. Dr. Lloyd-Jones concludes by providing examples of these excellencies of Christ and what they mean for the life of believers.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. Christianity captivates a person completely - mind, heart, and will. It is not a philosophy or theory but an experience that takes hold of a person.
  2. Paul writes with passion and conviction about his experience becoming a Christian. His life was completely ruined in worldly terms but he considers it worth it for Christ.
  3. Becoming a Christian meant Paul lost his family, position as a Pharisee, citizenship, and wealth. He suffered persecution and imprisonment. But he counts it all as loss for Christ.
  4. Paul says "yea doubtless" to emphasize how completely he considers worldly things as loss now that he has Christ. His conviction about this has only grown over time.
  5. A true Christian's devotion to Christ only increases over time. Emotional experiences are not the same as truly knowing Christ.
  6. Everything else seems worthless in comparison to knowing Christ. Worldly pleasures, possessions, qualities, gifts, positions, success, and applause are all loss.
  7. These worldly things cannot save, help one truly live, or help one die. They only provide superficial and temporary satisfaction.
  8. Worldly things are not just worthless but hindrances to salvation. They occupy time and attention, distract from God, and provide a false sense of security.
  9. Paul considers worldly things as "dung" and "refuse" because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ. This knowledge is what gives value and meaning to everything else.
  10. The excellence of knowing Christ is seen in Christ's person, work, and what He gives. He is the Son of God, Lord of glory who gave up heaven to die on the cross for sinners.
  11. Christ gives knowledge of God, new birth, righteousness, hope of glory, and an eternal inheritance. He is everything.
  12. Do you consider all else as loss compared to knowing Christ? If not, you likely do not know yourself or Christ as you ought. Knowing Christ makes all else seem like refuse.

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Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.