*Paul and Timothy are writing to the faithful brethren in Colossae.
*This chapter begins with what Paul and others did for the Colossians and ends with what Paul did. In the middle we see who God is and what He did for us.
*The first section is set up in a chiastic structure
A Praying always for you
B Since we heard of your faith and love
C Resulted from hearing the word of truth – the gospel
D The gospel is constantly bearing fruit and increasing
C’ Resulted from learning from Epaphras
B’ We heard of you love in the Spirit from him
A’ We have not ceased to pray for you
*Epaphras was on the front lines teachings the Colossians, and Paul and others were in the background praying constantly for them.
*The result was: the gospel bore fruit; they had faith in Christ; they had love for all the saints
*They prayed for the following things:
· Knowledge of God’s will with wisdom and understanding
· Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord
· Please God in all respects
· Bear fruit in every good work
· Increasing in the knowledge of God
· Strengthened with all power to be steadfast and patient
· Joyously giving thanks to God the Father
*A couple of these prayer points have to do with character (steadfastness and patience) and actions (bearing fruit in every good work), but most have to do with man’s relationship with God.
*God rescued us from Satan’s dark domain and put us in His Son’s loving kingdom!!!
*What’s is the King Jesus like? (since we are in His kingdom)
· He redeemed us
· He forgave all our sins
· He is the image of the invisible God
· He created all things in heaven and on earth
· All things were created FOR him
· He is the head of the body; the church
· He is the firstborn from the dead
· He will have first place in everything
· He is the one who reconciles us to God
· He made peace through His blood on the cross
*He did all this for us when we were alienated, hostile, and engaged in evil deeds
*He will present us before God holy, blameless and beyond reproach
*But there is an if… if we continue in the faith, firmly established and steadfast
*Back to Paul and his example as a minister of Christ
· He rejoices in his sufferings
· He is a good steward of the gifts and callings of Christ Jesus
· He proclaims Christ; admonishing every man; teaching every man
· He labors and strives according to God’s power that works mightily in Him
*Paul reminds us of an amazing truth: Christ in us in the hope of glory!
1. While I’d love to be a Paul, I’m not even close, but I would be thrilled to be an Epaphras – one who teaches the gospel in such a way that it bears fruit and produces both faith and love.
2. Paul was a prayer warrior and prays a beautiful prayer for the Colossians. I’d like to be a faithful, thankful prayer warrior like him, discerning God’s will, pleasing Him, bearing fruit in every good work, patient and steadfast, joyously giving thanks to the Father.
3. Reading about what God did for me when I was alienated, hostile and engaged in evil deeds makes me want to leap and jump and praise God. It also makes me want to love those who are alienated, hostile and engaged in evil deeds as a way for them to see God’s character.
4. I want to be a good steward of the gifts God has given me for the sake of the church. I can’t do it in my own strength… I need to strive according to His power that mightily works in me.
Lord, I know I am supposed to be a steward of your gifts and calling to help your church, your beautiful bride… And there are many who are beautiful. But I’m tired. I feel like the wind has been taken out of my sails. But I am so thankful for all that you have done for me. And I am thankful for Paul’s example. I want to pray like him. I want to rejoice in my suffering. I want to teach the gospel in a way that produces love, faith and great fruit. I don’t have a clue how to do that. But thankfully You do. And so let me labor and strive in your power and by your strength. Give me a patient and steadfast spirit. Help me to keep my eyes on You, my amazing king, who has forgiven me and redeemed me. Thank you so much that you took me out of Satan’s realm and put me in yours. And though I feel weak and tired, Christ lives in me and that is the hope of glory. Thank you that you chose to dwell with me forever and build your character in me.
Lord, I also want to pray for all of Trinity Church that we would be filled with knowledge of Your will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding. I pray we would walk in a manner worthy of You. I pray that we would desire to please You in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God. Strengthen us with all power, according to your glorious might, so that we may be steadfast and patient, joyously giving thanks to You. Amen.
Posted on Fri, June 5, 2015
by joel king