Book of Colossians, part one

I’ve been pretty entrenched in the Old Testament for around half a year now.  So when my brother told me to study Colossians I wasn’t sure at first. I really want to continue reading the Bible in order and besides, I’m way more familiar with the New Testament than I am the Old Testament. It’s been so exciting to experience the Old Testament for the first time. But when my brother told me he really felt like the Holy Spirit was encouraging him to tell me I should get into Colossians I knew I needed to jump into it. I actually went into it without the intention of blogging about it, as I just wanted to dive in and read and experience this book of the Bible for myself. However, it wasn’t long before I was reaching for my notebook as I just had to write about some of the amazing things I was experiencing in this wonderful book of the Bible.

Before I jump into that, I want to share on the history of this book of the Bible. Written by Paul while imprisoned, Colossians is thought to have been written around 62 a.d. and was addressed to the church at Colosse. While Paul had never visited the church himself, he knew of it and was in the know about false teachers and false teachings that had wormed their way into the church. These false teachers were trying to make additions to the teachings of Jesus and Paul’s letter was aimed at reminding the church of the absolute and unchanging completeness of Jesus’ place as our sole source of salvation.

What I love so much about the Bible is that here we are 1,954 years after this letter was written and yet it’s still so relevant. False teaching and false teachers are so prominent these days. It’s such a dangerous time because if you trust the wrong church or pastor you can find yourself getting a twisted version of the gospel. Some of the biggest name preachers are teaching a Jesus-less message week after week. Sometimes I wonder if they just never got to the part of the Bible that features Jesus because it sure seems like some of these guys don’t even know His name! So I most certainly believe that Colossians is every bit as relevant today as it was 1,954 years ago.

As I dove into Colossians, it wasn’t long before the first group of verses really jumped out at me. Paul is talking about Jesus here.

Colossians 1:17-20 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

There’s so much here. First up is verse 17, which I could just talk about for days on end. The part that really gets me is the second half of the sentence. “And in him all things hold together.” Jesus holds all things together. There is nothing outside of his control or jurisdiction. What a powerful truth this is. There’s no place in which you can go that He won’t come rescue you. You can’t be too lost in sin for Jesus, He can pull you back. You don’t have to worry about the state of things, Jesus holds all things together. His lordship is all encompassing, from my heart to the entirety of all creation. The micro and the macro belong to Jesus, they fall under His rule.

The other verse out of this group that I really want to focus on is verse 20. “And through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” There’s a word in there that blew my mind and just made me shake my head. Look at the last few words in the verse. It’s not by the blood of THE cross, it’s by the blood of HIS cross. What a simple difference that makes all the difference in the world. The cross isn’t just a thing here, it’s not just an instrument that was used to crucify Jesus. The way Paul writes it here paints a powerful picture. It’s not just a cross, it’s a cross that has an owner. It’s His cross. Without the ownership of Jesus, the cross is just a few pieces of wood that were used for a dastardly purpose. There’s no power in a cross, but there’s most definitely power in the cross of Jesus. It’s not just two pieces of wood that mark the symbol of my salvation, it’s not just some random pieces of lumber that represent the greatest gift ever given in the history of the world. It’s the owner of that lumber that makes all the difference. That’s not just a cross, it belongs to Jesus, and it is stained with His blood. Blood that He willingly gave so that you and I could walk free and receive eternal life. The cross is a powerful symbol, one that holds a special place in my life as I’m sure it does for all believers. But man, this verse just hit me hard with the reminder that without the Son of God who hung on that cross, it means nothing. His sacrifice upon that cross is what bought me, what relieved me of a debt I was never going to be able to pay.

Colossians 1:19-20 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

That is a beautiful and powerful thing for us to remember. It’s not just a cross, it’s His cross, and that’s what gives it power and meaning.

PRAYER AND CLOSING

Lord Jesus, today I just want to take time and thank you for your cross.  Man, I get conflicted when I think about what you did for me on your cross.  Part of me hates that you died for me, because you didn’t deserve it.  It’s not fair that you paid my debt.  But you knew I couldn’t do it, Jesus, and you love me with a love so vast, so incredible, that you saw me and you said, Aaron is worth it.  And you died a horrible death, and you bore a terrible weight of sin, and you did it all because you love me, and you love everyone that much.  Jesus, I may hate that it came to that, but I love that you cared enough to do it for me.  All I want to do now is honor that sacrifice, to bring glory to you, to be with you and to be pleasing to you.  It’s not just a cross.  It’s your cross.  Thank you for the Bible, and beautiful passages like this.  Your cross, Jesus.  There were many crosses, but only one matters, and it matters because who it belongs to.  The power of your cross echoes across all time.  The love that motivated you to the cross echoes across all time.  That love is alive and well today.  So Jesus, I just say that I love you today.  I don’t know what else to say.  I don’t think I’ll ever feel worthy of your sacrifice, but I know I’ll never stop loving you.  I’ll never stop being amazed at how much you love me.  And Lord, my cry to you right now is to keep me bold, to grant me more boldness, grant me more wisdom, and grant me more opportunities so that I may share your love with others.  Just like a cross, I’m nothing special on my own, but I have an owner, too.  I belong to you, Jesus.  It’s who I belong to that gives me power, that gives me meaning, that gives me purpose.  I thank you so much for calling me yours, Lord.  It’s the most beautiful thing I could possibly be called, and I exist within the beautiful truth that I belong to you today.  Thank you for it, Jesus, thank you for it my King and my Lord.  May my life honor you and bring glory upon you.  I pray this in your precious name, Jesus.  Amen.

I love you guys, and I thank all of you for spending a little time with me today as we started our journey into Colossians.  There are so many powerful and mighty truths in this book, I’m excited to write about it for the next week or so.  I hope the week is going great for each of you.  God loves you and He’s just so excited to know you.  Work on your relationship with Him this week.

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