June 13, 2021

Seeking after the Interests of Christ

But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, so that I also may be encouraged when I learn of your condition. For I have no one else of kindred spirit who will genuinely be concerned for your welfare. For they all seek after their own interests, not those of Christ Jesus. But you know of his proven worth that he served with me in the furtherance of the gospel like a child serving his father. Therefore I hope to send him immediately, as soon as I see how things go with me. —Phil. 2:19–23.

The Apostle Paul says something very commendable and laudatory about his protégé and fellow-worker Timothy, where he describes Timothy as seeking after the interests of Christ. Think about that phrase: can there be a higher compliment? Can this be said truly of you? Of me? (And isn’t this reminiscent of another young man of God, King David, a man after God’s own heart?)

What would it look like to see a person seeking after the interests of Christ? Well, chief among Christ’s interests is the salvation of men, women, and children — “so that whoever believes in Him may not perish, but have eternal life” — and so a person seeking Christ’s interests will be doing what he or she can to bring this about, whether it’s praying earnestly, or sharing with friends and family the Good News about forgiveness of sins, or supporting missionaries whether financially or by laboring in prayer for them. In fact, a Christian may be so taken up with Christ’s interests that, like the Apostle Paul, he or she may grieve deeply over the state of those who are outside of Christ (Rom. 9:1–5; also Matt. 5:4, Ps. 126:5–6).

Further, a person seeking after the interests of Christ will be diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit within the Church (Eph. 4:3). They will not expect this unity simply just to happen, but instead they will be actively promoting unity, by caring for one another, praying for one another, and being humble and forbearing towards one another (Phil. 2:7, Col. 3:12–14).

And of course one seeking after the interests of Christ will truly love His people, knowing that not only is this one of His deepest desires (Jn. 13:34–35), but it is also one of the most powerful testimonies to who He is (Jn. 13:35, 17:20–23).

There are any number of other such interests we could name, but for us to develop a heart such as Timothy had, a heart which seeks after the interests of Christ, we must spend much time with Him, learning of Him, listening to His Word, and praying earnestly.