September 15th 2019: Alan Davison

Alan Davison - Sept19‘Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught,
abounding in thanksgiving.’

Colossians 2:6-7

There are a lot of things in our lives we learn but we hope we will never have to do again. Sometimes, some believe they need to hear the gospel, respond to it be saved, but then think they don’t need to carry on with it. They believe they don’t need daily repentance, they don’t need to continually come back to Jesus.

The Church at Colossae was doing quite well. Paul had not been there but had received detailed reports from Epaphras (Colossians 1:7-8). However, Paul was concerned that the Colossians were under threat of false teachers coming in and belittling Christ. Some of the false teachers were on about needing special knowledge. None of this really matters if all they offer is ‘something’ and Christ. Paul’s concern is that persuasive words might have the Colossians looking for something else. Paul is writing to Christians, reminding them the gospel is the foundation upon which they are to dwell.

‘Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord.’ Paul says the Colossians have received Christ Jesus. The gospel is an invitation to all. It gives ‘all the treasure of wisdom and knowledge’ (Colossians 2:3). For us to be aware of the preciousness of Christ we have knowledge of Christ but also wisdom to go on in the faith. Paul commends the Colossians for their order and steadfastness (v5).

1 Chronicles 12:38: all these men of war came to Hebron with a loyal heart. They knew their place in the line of battle. They also had loyal hearts. They were steadfast in the cause. We need both of these attributes.

Paul ends the 6th verse with ‘The Lord.’ He emphasises a lofty view of Christ. He wants the Colossians, and us, to come back to the fact that Jesus is Lord. They and we are to continue in Him. We must come to Christ and Him alone. There are no other qualifications. We don’t need anything else. Acts 16:30-31. Don’t over-complicate the gospel.

‘So walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving’ (Colossians 2:7). This is Paul’s slogan for Christian living. We know the Jews used this to behave in a morally upright manner. To accept Christ is not only to know about Him, it’s also to accept Christ Himself. We’re in a living relationship with Christ, we’re in Christ.

Our walk is to be rooted and built up. Start with a firm foundation – Christ. Draw spiritual nourishment from Christ (v 19). We are to meditate on God’s words as we seek to walk. Once we have settled on a foundation, then we need to build upon it. It’s an ongoing process. Seek to build on the foundation of Christ under His leadership. The building process can and will take time.

A proper building requires patience. God has a great deal of patience with His children and knows how much we can handle at a time. Jesus is perfect but we don’t always hold on to Him as we should. So we seek to strengthen our faith and increase its tenacity under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the power of Jesus Christ. The more faith we have in Jesus, the less we will struggle on in ourselves and the more we will come to Him in prayer. We retain the same gospel principles and seek to put these into practise.

In our spiritual lives we can all go through periods when we go spiritually off the boil. We need to look back at the basics, look back at the foundation, how far we have come. Paul ends by saying we should do all this ‘abounding in thanksgiving.’ Such a thankfulness speaks of God rather than ourselves. It is of joy. If we do struggle, look to the cross and marvel at His grace. 

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