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About-Him.Com Devotional 04-24-2011
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Thoughts on the Book of Colossians

This is the first of an expository study of the book of Colossians. The book of Colossians was written by Paul to the gentile church at Colosse, a  city in Asia Minor, probably between A.D. 60-67, from prison in Rome. This church was founded by Epapras, a co-worker of Paul. Epaphras had evidently written a glowing report to Paul of their spiritual growth and steadfastness. However, he must have stated his concern that seeds of doctrinal errors were being planted that diminished the absolute sovereignty and Lordship of the Lord Jesus. There were also elements of  pharisaical teachings combined with Greek philosophical  speculation and the early forms of Gnosticism. All of which diminished  the glory of the Lord Jesus. Sadly, many of these ideas are still around today. 

Paul’s Greeting to the Colossians 

Colossians1:1 ¶  Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timotheus our brother,
2  To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
 

The apostle Paul set forth his authority stating that he is an apostle by the will of God (Acts 9:15; Gal. 1:1). Paul also acknowledges Timothy who is with him in Rome as a fellow laborer. As the older generation of leadership passed away, this endorsement helped Timothy be established in the future leadership of the church. 

Paul is writing to saints and faithful brethren who according to Romans 1:7 and 1Corinthians 1:2 are those who call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and are beloved of God and sanctified or set apart in Christ Jesus and called to be saints. We didn’t suddenly decide to be saints, God called us and set us apart as vessels for His use.  These sanctified saints are those who have believed and obeyed the gospel. Paul desires that these saints be endowed with grace and peace from God our Father and from His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ (John 1:14,17). It was God bestowing His grace upon us that enabled us to simply hear the gospel. It was grace that enabled us to believe the gospel story. It was grace that enabled us to obey the gospel (Mk. 16:16; Ac. 2:38,10:32; 1Jo. 5:13). We take the gospel for granted but we need to remember that untold billions of people have never heard it once. Why are we so privileged?  Do we appreciate that fact? What does God expect from us in return? 

We were saved by grace through faith which is a gift of God. Our works had nothing to do with it. We did nothing to attract God’s attention before conversion and have done nothing of our own selves since (Eph. 2:8-9). Any accomplishments we have attained are because of the divine enablement of the Holy Spirit. We all are given grace  according to the measure of the of the gift of Christ (Eph. 4:7).  He imparts His gifts to each one, as He wills (1Cor. 12:11) and to whom much is given, much is required (Lu. 12:48). 

Our own righteousness is as filthy rags in the sight of God (Isaiah 64:6). We were saved by God’s mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost (Tit. 3:5). We were freely justified or declared righteous by the grace of God, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus (Ro. 3:24). God saved us according to His own purpose and grace which was given us in Christ before the world began. When God was hanging the stars in place and calling each of them by name (Isa. 40:26), He was writing our names in the book of life also (Rev. 13:8, 17:8). 

2Timothy 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called [us] with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, 

Grace is our teacher: God’s grace teaches us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works (Tit. 2:11-14). 

Because of grace, sin can have no dominion over us (Ro. 6:14). 

We have an everlasting consolation and good hope, because of grace. 

2Thessalonians  2:16 ¶ Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given [us] everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, 

Because of grace, our needs are fulfilled that we might be able to labor for the kingdom of God (2Cor. 8:9, 9:8). 

The Peace of God: 

Ever since Adam sinned the world has been in turmoil. In all of history, there has only been a handful of years when war wasn’t being waged somewhere upon the earth. People cry ,”Peace and safety,” but peace and safety seems to be an elusive dream, destruction comes in it’s place (1Th. 5:3). 

Isaiah 57:21 [There is] no peace, saith my God, to the wicked. 

James 4:2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
 

About 750 years before Jesus was born in Bethlehem, Isaiah  prophesied that a child would be  born, and a son given who would bear the burden of the government. His name would be  called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, and The Prince of Peace. He would establish an everlasting  government upon the throne of David with unending justice and peace (Isa. 9:6-7). 

Psalms 29:11 The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace. 

Isaiah 52:7 ¶ How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!
 

When Jesus was born the angels announced the birth of the peace giver Lu. 2:14). What a different place this world would be if the world would have received Him, rather than nailing Him to the cross (1Cor.2:8). Think of all the slaughter that could have been averted, if sinful men had only submitted to the rule of God and let His peace control their actions. 

Jesus promised us a peace that was not of this world. When the world is on the brink of self destruction , the peace of God that is beyond understanding keeps our hearts and minds through the Lord Jesus (Jo. 14:27; Php. 4:7). 

The peace of God is only promised to the believer. Tribulation and anguish is promised to the sinner (Ro. 2:9). Having received the peace of God by believing in Jesus, we can maintain His peace  in our hearts by practicing the things that we have learned and received from those who are our examples (Php. 4:9). As we walk in the baptism of the Spirit , ….the God of hope fills us with all joy and peace in believing, that we may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost (Ro. 15:13). It is in the Holy Ghost that we find righteousness, joy and peace (Ro. 14:17). 

See: The Peace of God 


Next Week: Paul’s Thanksgiving for the Colossians  
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"We have an unchanging gospel, which is not today green grass and tomorrow dry hay; but always the abiding truth of the immutable Jehovah." (C.H. Spurgeon)

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Don and Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries


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