0-9 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
To Find Lyric Alphabetical Category Click On The First Letter Of The Title

<< Previous | Index | Next >>
                     "THE EPISTLE TO THE COLOSSIANS"

               The Conversion Of The Colossians (1:21-23)

INTRODUCTION

1. We noticed in the previous lesson that Paul was describing "The
   Pre-Eminent Christ" - 1:13-20

2. The last point made by Paul was that Jesus was "The Reconciler Of All
   Things" - 1:20

3. As a case in point, Paul reminds the Colossians they too had been
   "reconciled" to God through Jesus Christ - 1:21-23

[In this study we will examine "The Conversion Of The Colossians" as 
described in this passage, with a view towards understanding and 
appreciating our own reconciliation with God...]

I. THE CONVERSION OF THE COLOSSIANS (21-23)

   A. BEFORE THEIR CONVERSION...
      1. Paul said they were "alienated and enemies"
         a. The word "alienated" comes from apallotrioo
            {ap-al-lot-ree-o'-o}, which means:
            1) to alienate, estrange
            2) to be shut out from one's fellowship and intimacy
         b. The word "enemies" is from echthros {ech-thros'}, and
            describes that which is:
            1) hated, odious, hateful
            2) hostile, hating, and opposing another;
            3) used of men as at enmity with God by their sin
      2. Why were they this way?
         a. Because in both THOUGHT and DEED they were sinners!
         b. As Paul writes:  "...enemies in your mind by wicked works"

   B. BUT NOW THEY ARE RECONCILED!
      1. How so?  Two things are mentioned in the context...
         a. Earlier, in verse 20, Paul mentions "the blood of His
            cross"
         b. Now, in verses 21-22, Paul says they were reconciled "in
            the body of His flesh through death"
         -- Both of these phrases emphasize that Jesus suffered IN THE
            FLESH, something some people in those days denied - cf. 
            2 Jn 7; He 2:9,14
      2. Through the offering of Jesus' body and blood, they were now
         reconciled (brought back) to God; they are now presented to God
         as:
         a. "holy" - sanctified, set apart for God's use
         b. "blameless" - without being guilty of anything worthy of
            blame
         c. "irreproachable" - guilty of nothing that can be called into
            to account; unreproveable, unaccused, blameless
      3. Note that this wonderful condition is how GOD viewed them ("in
         His sight")!

   C. THEIR RECONCILIATION TO GOD AND EXALTED CONDITION CONTINUES
      "IF..."
      1. They "continue in the faith"
      2. They remain "grounded and steadfast"
      3. They "are not moved away from the hope of the gospel"

[In "The Conversion Of The Colossians," we have seen...

   1) That they had been grave sinners, enemies and alienated from God
   2) Yet, they had been reconciled to God
      a) Through Jesus' death on the cross
      b) Such so they were now "holy, blameless, and irreproachable in
         His sight"
   3) But their reconciliation appears conditional, dependent upon their
      continued faithfulness and steadfast hope!

Now let's make some...]

II. OBSERVATIONS AND APPLICATIONS

   A. THE COLOSSIANS' CONDITION PRIOR TO RECONCILIATION WAS NOT UNIQUE
      1. True, they had been wicked sinners, enemies, and alienated from
         God
      2. But so were we all! - cf. Ep 2:1-3; Ti 3:3
      3. Anyone who thinks otherwise is ignorant of:
         a. The terribleness of sin
         b. The awesome holiness and justice required of God's character
      4. To better understand how the opposition of sin and God's
         holiness...
         a. Consider what ONE sin will do:  make us as guilty as though
            we have broken the entire law! - cf. Ja 2:10
         b. Consider the price necessary to redeem us from sin - the 
            death of God's Beloved Son!
         c. Contemplate the "words of anguish" uttered by Jesus as He
            bore our sins upon the cross ("My God, My God, why have You
            forsaken Me?") - Mt 27:46

   B. OUR RECONCILIATION WITH GOD IS MADE POSSIBLE ONLY THROUGH JESUS'
      DEATH ON THE CROSS
      1. Good works cannot reconcile us back to God
         a. Such as "church-going", acts of mercy and kindness, etc.
         b. If so, then Cornelius would have been saved by them
            1) For he certainly was a "good man" - cf. Ac 10:1-2
            2) But as recounted by Peter, the angel told Cornelius that
               he still needed to have Peter tell him what to do to be
               saved - cf. Ac 11:13-14
      2. Though "good works" are essential as disciples of Jesus Christ
         (cf. Ti 2:14; 3:1,8,14), the bottom line is this:
         a. We are "justified" (declared "not guilty") by Christ's blood
            - Ro 5:9
         b. Only the "blood of His cross" can cleanse us from sin! - Ep
            1:7; 1 Jn 1:7
      3. The crucial question, then, is how can one benefit from the 
         blood of Jesus?
         a. At first, through a penitent faith when we are baptized into
            Christ - Ac 2:38
            1) For in baptism, we are united with Christ in His death - 
               Ro 6:3-8
            2) And in baptism, we are "clothed with" (or "put on")
               Christ - Ga 3:27
            -- So united with Christ and clothed with Him, we enjoy all
               the spiritual blessings to be found by being in Him,
               including "redemption through His blood"! - Ep 1:7
         b. Then, as needed, we have access to the blood of Jesus
            through repentance and prayer -  1 Jn 9; e.g., Ac 8:22
      4. Only in this way can we be "holy, blameless, and
         irreproachable" in God's sight!

   C. OUR RECONCILIATION IS CONDITIONAL!
      1. Notice again that Paul says "IF INDEED YOU CONTINUE..." - Co 
         1:23
         a. Once saved (reconciled to God), we can still be lost!
         b. What about "the security of the believer?"
            1) Though the Bible does teach the security of the BELIEVER
            2) It also teaches the insecurity of the UNBELIEVER
            3) And it teaches that a BELIEVER, if not diligent, can
               become an UNBELIEVER! - cf. He 3:12-15; 16-4:2,11
      2. And so, Paul emphasizes that we must "continue in the faith",
         which involves:
         a. Being "grounded and steadfast" (thus the need for follow-up)
         b. "not moved away from the hope of the gospel," which can
            occur through:
            1) Error or false doctrine - cf. 2 Pe 3:17
            2) Temptations to sin - cf. 2 Pe 2:20-22
            3) Trials and hardships in life - cf. Re 2:10

CONCLUSION

1. What have we learned from "The Conversion Of The Colossians"?
   a. First, a reminder to those who are Christians...
      1) Of where they once were
      2) Of the blessings they now enjoy in Christ
      3) Of the need to remain faithful to the end
   b. But also, a lesson to those not Christians...
      1) Pointing out where they are right now in their sins, as God
         views them
      2) Revealing where they can be, if they will respond so as to
         benefit from the blessings of Jesus' death on the cross
      3) That being a Christian will require continued steadfastness and
         growth on their part

2. We close with an observation concerning Paul's remark about the
   gospel, which even in his day "was preached to every creature under
   heaven" (1:23)...
   a. In this lesson, I have shared the basics of the gospel to every
      person who receives this lesson
   b. Have you obeyed the gospel?  If not, why not now?  Remember it was
      Jesus who said:

      Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every 
      creature.  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved;
      but he that believeth not shall be damned. - Mk 16:15-16
<< Previous | Index | Next >>







Higher Praise™

Higher Praise Christian Center™
higherpraise.com™ higherpraise.org™

© Copyright 1999, Higher Praise™ HigherPraise™,Inc. All rights reserved. Terms of Use

Enjoy A Life Changing Experience