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Scripture Reading: Colossians 1:13-20
Perfect in Christ
1. Christ Jesus is complete in every way. Colossians sets out the preeminence of Christ: Over sin, creation, all dominion and powers, the church, Col. 1:13-20.
2. The apostolic stewardship fulfills Godís word for our salvation, our fellowship with Christ and our spiritual maturity, Col. 1:25-29.
3. We do not need the very things men continue to believe are necessary in order to have a full life (whether in Christ or as many believe, without Him at all).
4. Col. 2-3: We are warned against things that are unnecessary and destructive to our relation with Christ and our perfection in Him.
I. WE ARE MADE PERFECT IN CHRIST BY HIS GOSPEL, Col. 1:25-28 (Jas. 1:25). Preach Christ when we preach the gospel (1:28)
A. By Using Godís Word to Strengthen our Faith, Jno. 14:1-2; 17:17.
B. By Using Godís Word to Know Good and Evil, Heb. 5:11-14.
C. By Using Godís Word to Resist Sinís Temptations, Eph. 6:13-17.
D. By Using Godís Word to Assure our Hope, Col. 1:3-6.
II. WARNINGS AGAINST THINGS THAT DO NOT MAKE US PERFECT IN CHRIST (DESTROY US), Col. 2-3.
A. The Philosophies of Men, Col. 2:1-10. (Love of knowledge; ďfond of wise thingsĒ) Gnosticism (2nd-3rd centuries).
1. Christ is the fullness of wisdom and knowledge, 2:3; 1 Cor. 1:24, 30-31.
-Human philosophies lead men to deny God and to deny/ignore the problem of sin, Rom. 1:18-23; Ex. Acts 17:18-21.
2. Injecting philosophy into the gospel corrupts the gospel and plunders our riches in Christ, 2:8.
3. Do not rely on human thinking/knowledge to define Godís truth!
B. Binding the Law of Moses, Col. 2:11-17.
1. Only Christís circumcision puts away sin, 2:11-13.
2. Christís cross removed OT law (which could never remove sin), 2:14-15.
3. OT a shadow of coming things; Christ is the image, 2:16-17.
4. Sabbatarians, evangelicals, premillennialists, etc. Ė All who bind parts of the LOM, Gal. 5:3-4.
C. Binding Commandments and Doctrines of Men, Col. 2:18-23.
1. Believing false visions is prideful and severs from Christ, 2:18-19.
2. Asceticism: Lifestyle of abstinence (man-defined, not God-defined), 2:20-23; cf. 1 Ths. 5:21-22; 1 Cor. 5:9-10.
3. Creeds, conventions, councils, etc. will never make one perfect in Christ. Gal. 1:6-10
D. Living in Sin (Carnality), Col. 3:1-11.
1. SeekÖsetÖsustain, 3:1-4.
2. When the mind is set on the flesh it is carnal and at war with God, Rom. 8:5-9.
3. Cannot ďlive inĒ sin and live with Christ, 3:5-7; Rom. 6:1-2.
a. We do not decide what is moral and acceptable to God.
b. Put off the old man and all his sins, put on new man, 3:9-10.
1. The apostle continues to explain maturity in Christ (3:12-17) and makes additional applications to the Christianís daily relationships and conduct (3:18-4:6).
2. All of this is because Christ is complete; nothing should be, needs to be or will be added to Christ with Godís approval.
3. The gospel we preach and follow is sufficient for faith, hope and love.
Gnosticism: ďa religion that differentiates the evil god of this world (who is identified with the god of the Old Testament) from a higher more abstract God revealed by Jesus Christ, a religion that regards this world as the creation of a series of evil archons/powers who wish to keep the human soul trapped in an evil physical body, a religion that preaches a hidden wisdom or knowledge only to a select group as necessary for salvation or escape from this world.Ē -Gnostics, Gnostic Gospels, & Gnosticism, http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/gnostics.html
By: Joe R. Price
Posted: May 3, 2014