by MW Cook

Knowing Jesus

Knowing you, Jesus, knowing you
There is no greater thing
You’re my all, you’re the best
You’re my joy, my righteousness
And I love you, Lord.

Why is knowing Jesus the best? Why is this the highest goal of Christianity? What made Paul say that he counted everything crap compared to knowing Him? What makes Jesus so attractive?

It’s pretty much impossible to love Jesus, did you know that? Not because there is anything lacking in Him, but because there is a lot lacking in us. Think about a lovely piece of art, be it a painting, sculpture, poem, film, novel, whatever. The average person who knows next to nothing about the art of painting would look at a canvas and not be able to appreciate it. He may like it because it looks pretty, but he cannot fully understand it for what it is. The same is true with a person who never writes, he may be entertained by a book, but the real goodness of it, the artistic level, is lost to him. I think it’s the same with Jesus. We may read about him and affirm that he is was a lovely man and did lovely things. We may imagine that we would like him if we knew him, but there can naturally be no love for him because we are naturally anti-spiritual. We like religion, to be sure, and we often enjoy morality, but the true, underlying glory and beauty of Christ is completely lost to us, unless some understanding of holiness and spirituality is somehow infused into us. You can only see the real quality of a thing if you are somehow acquainted with the subject of its goodness. The best art critic is an artist. The best novel reviewer is a writer. The better the reviewer is at writing, the more accurately he will judge the written work. If Mark Twain says a book is crap, it’s crap. If he says a book is a masterpiece, we will be reading it for centuries.

So with Christ the only way we can ever love him is if we have his spirit put into us. Then we can see why he is so wonderful, why the saints of old loved him so much. The more his life is lived in and out of us the more we will be able to accurately judge how good he really is. Only with Christ we will never conclude that he is deficient, unless we really don’t know him at all. The more we see and appreciate his infinite perfections the more we will fall in love with him.

So why does God command us to seek him? The same reason our teachers in high school begged us to read those old classics that we hated. Because if we ever actually appreciated them and understood them, we would fall in love with them and read them more and more. In the same way, if I set myself to seek God and to try to understand these beautiful perfections he has, I will love him more and more. The great part is, those who love God get him. I may love a certain novel, but if the bookstore doesn’t have it I’m out of luck. The promise of God is that all who love him, get him