Tuesday, 12 September 2017 – katalambano (1)
Philippians 3:12-14 Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may lay hold on that for which also I was laid hold on by Christ Jesus. 13 Brethren, I could not myself yet to have laid hold: but one thing [I do], forgetting the things which are behind, and stretching forward to the things which are before, 14 I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
So many Christians focus on the first part of this passage: I have not obtained perfection. But the real key is the phrase lay hold on. Paul says that he is laying hold on the thing that laid hold on him through Jesus Christ. That thing is nothing other than God’s plan for your life. Remember Paul was always passionate about the Church of Jesus. But before his conversion he was laying hold on the Church to do it harm. But then God’s plan laid hold on him and now Paul was laying hold on that plan to build up the Church.
The Greek word here is: katalambano. The Greek word lambano means to take in hand, or to take hold of. But the prefix kata acts like an amplifier to the verb. So katalambano literally means to run after and seize with excessive force. And it implies that you never grow tired of it, and you never, ever, let go of it.
In the US you would say: Own it. The great difference between a child and an adult, is that a child doesn’t own anything. And what he thinks he owns he bought with someone else’s money. An adult earns money, saves, plans, and when he does purchase something, he can say, I own that.
Are you an adult or are you a child in the kingdom of heaven? It is wonderful when we can go to church and enjoy wonderful worship, when it was someone else who paid the price to practice, pray and prepare. It is wonderful when the preacher gives us a message from heaven that we didn’t pay for in intercession. It is wonderful when church members love us and welcome us when we didn’t give anything to deserve that. But what would happen if God asked me to grow up and become a spiritual adult? What would be my response if God said to me: Child, you must katalambano My will for you, or you will miss it?
It is time to grow up, my friend. Spiritual babies don’t advance God’s kingdom in the earth; to do that, you must be a spiritual adult.