NUGGETS: To Live Is Christ

For me to Live is Christ and to die is gain”[Phil.1:19]. If We as Christians could get hold of that one verse, our life would change tremendously. When Paul wrote this, he knew all things work together for his good. Knowing too, that he, in his earnest expectations and hope, that Christ would be magnified in his body whether by life or by death.[Read Phil.1:19-21]. The world would be a much better place if every Christian would have that earnest expectation and hope for our spirit, soul and bodies to serve our Lord in such boldness.
Paul had been beat, either to death or almost to death, several times and in prison more than once. No wonder he longed to go on and be with Christ. Yet from the time He fell for Jesus on the road to Damascus, he no longer put himself first.
Verse 22, “For if I live on in this flesh, this will mean fruit from my Labor, yet what I shall chose I cannot tell.” Paul knew if he chose to stay here on this earth, he would continue to serve God with all his heart. Fruit would automatically come from his labor. He was saying that, that would be a plus for the kingdom. Not bragging about himself, it would just be a fact. There was no thought about wasting time, apathy, complacency, laziness or selfishness.
Verses 23-24, For I am hard pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better, nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you.” Wouldn’t that be awesome to live in such a way that we could choose to go on and be with the Lord, or choose to stay here and serve the Lord. The Lord, would surely be the reason for our whole existence, in order to have that choice. He said it is FAR BETTER to be with the Lord. Some think death is just the grave, others think it is nothingness. If they are right , then the Christians have nothing to lose. If Christians are right and there is a hell to miss and a heaven to gain, the unbeliever is in terrible trouble. Jesus said “I am the Way the Truth and the Life, none comes to the Father but by Me.” No organization can get us to heaven; no man can pray us in. We go to God one at a time. A friend will not be standing there making excuses, no excuse will work. God does not grade on a curve. We have an awesome privilege to choose Him now.
Verse 25, “And being confident of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy of faith”. He gave up the Idea of going on to be with the Lord for the moment, not thinking of himself, but thinking of the good of others. His desire was to help develop the faith of those he ministered to, knowing that the progress in their life would bring joy. Paul had come to the place to” know the Power of Jesus’ resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering” [Phil.3:10]. Yes, for Paul to live, was Christ and to die, he knew would be gain, FAR BETTER. Paul encouraged all of us, “Only let your conduct be worthy of the Gospel of Christ”[V.27]. He went on to say, “stand fast in one spirit, with one mind, striving together for the faith of the gospel.” Let us stand fast in the Spirit of God this year and be conservative in everything we think, say and do this year, that, “For us to Live is Christ.”