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About-Him.Com Devotional 04-30-2011

Thoughts on the book of Colossians - Part 2
Paul's Prayer for the Colossian Believers

We stated last week , that the church at Colosse was established by Epaphras, a co-worker of Paul.  He spoke highly of these saints in a letter to the apostle Paul, who had never met them face to face.  Evidently he also expressed concerns to Paul concerning false teachers and doctrines that the church was facing.  Paul begins on a positive note by making mention of their better qualities, before he deals with the areas where they need correction. We all need correction at times, but the manner in which it is delivered makes all the difference in the world as to how we receive it.  

Paul begins his letter by assuring these saints that he is constantly praying for them, just as he assured all of the other churches in his care that he was constantly praying for them also.    

Text: Colossians 1:3¶  We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,  

Paul told us in 1Thessolonians  5:7 to “Pray without ceasing.“  Obviously Paul couldn’t be on his knees 24/7, but he stayed in constant communion with heaven as he went about his daily tasks.  Jesus told us in Luke 18:1 that “….men ought always to pray, and not to faint.” He told us in Luke 21:36 that we were to, “Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.  

In the introductions that Paul wrote to the various churches under his care, we see the same urging for us to be in constant prayer.  

Romans 12:12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;  

Ephesians 6:18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;  

Colossians 4:2 ¶ Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;  

Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

We could summarize Paul’s prayer for all the churches from Ephesians 3:14-19.  

Ephesians 3:14 ¶  For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
15  Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
16  That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;
17  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
18  May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
19  And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

Text: Colossians 1:4 Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints,  

Paul learned in the letter from Epaphras that the church at Colosse was walking in faith, and that their faith was being demonstrated by their love for one another. Love is an essential element of God’s substance. John told us to love one another because God is love and that if we don’t show love we don’t know God. In other words, like I brag to my children when they do well, “The acorn doesn’t fall very far from the tree (1Jo. 4:8).”  Love is a natural fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22). Jesus said that men would know we were His disciples by the love that we show for one another (John 13:35).  Unfortunately, in the minds of men,  one instance of a Christian acting contrary to love, negates the loving acts shown by others.  

Text: Colossians 1:5 For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;  

See: Hope, a Firm Expectation Based on God's Word  

Text: Colossians 1:6  Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth:  

After Pentecost, the disciples obeyed the great commission to go into all the world and preach the gospel. The gospel of hope reached all of the known world is a very short time. It was noted of the apostles that they had turned the world unside down (Acts 17:6). The gospel does that, doesn’t it?  

Luke 4:18  The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
19  To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.  

Romans 1:16 ¶ For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

Text: Colossians 1:7  As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ;
8  Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit.

Paul was moved by the report of Epaprhas. Yes, there were problems at the church at Colosse, just as there are problems at the churches that you and I attend. Somebody has said that if find  a perfect church, it won’t remain perfect after we get there.  Because of the good report from Epaphras, Paul reiterated that he would keep them in comnstant prayer. He desired that they might be filled with the knowledge of God's will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; and that they might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.  

Text: Colossians 1:9 ¶  For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;
10  That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.

I believe it is the desire of us all to have a deeper comprehension of the God whom we serve.  We haven’t arrived yet, have we? As Paul said, “We haven’t yet gotten a hold of Him who got a hold of us, but we are striving.  We are pressing for the mark of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. This world is rocking and reeling on it’s last legs. Let us not lose sight of the hope that we have in Jesus. May we all be, “filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That we might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.”  

We can take comfort in the fact that even though we are not perfect, we can be strengthened by the prayers of each other and especially by the present intercession of the Lord Jesus who ever lives and makes intercession for us (Heb. 7:25) and that He who has begun a good work in us will perform it until the day of the Lord Jesus (Php. 1:6). He's brought us this far, He'll see us through.    
Somebody Has Said

"Avoid a sugared gospel as you would shun sugar of lead. Seek the gospel which rips up and tears and cuts and wounds and hacks and even kills, for that is the gospel that makes alive again. And when you have found it, give good heed to it. Let it enter into your inmost being. As the rain soaks into the ground, so pray the Lord to let his gospel soak into your soul."  - Charles Haddon Spurgeon  

Free Ebooks That You Can Download.

An Expository Study on the Book of Colossians  

The I AMs of Jesus     

Keep Looking Up!

Don and Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries

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