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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Colossians 1:21-29 Paul's Spiritual Secrets Revealed

Title: Paul's Spiritual Secrets Revealed
Text: Colossians 1:21-29

Everyone wants to know the secrets of this life to live better off. The secret to getting in shape, the secret to losing weight, the secret to make money, the secret to relationships, the secret of success, and on and on and on! The world wants to know something special and how to live a better life. Well Paul reveals the secret of spiritual success in the book of Colossians that explains how to live a better life. Paul explains four important spiritual truths to the Colossians to authenticate his apostleship, and educate them through discipleship. He reveals four spiritual secrets for spiritual success. His desire for the Colossians was to be strong believers. The theme Paul presents is we have been saved to live; therefore we are to live to serve. As an older preacher once said, “We were not saved to sit, but we were saved to serve!” Apostle Paul is going to give us some insights into how his ministry flourished and how to live a life of spiritual success for the glory of God.

The first thing Paul wants the Colossians to understand is the Spiritual Condition of man. When you see the sinfulness of your soul and how God has reconciled you through Christ to the Father and to give you access to heaven, broadens the horizons of devotion. Paul always talked about this and it proved to strengthen his walk with Christ. He said he was the least of the apostles (1 Corinthians 15:9), then least of the saints (Ephesians 3:8), and lastly that he was the chief of all sinners (1 Timothy 1:15).

Secondly, Paul wants the Colossians to know His Spiritual Commitment to God. Paul was more dedicated to the gospel than anyone else besides Christ. He says in 1 Corinthians 15:10 “But by the grace of God, I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” He was obedient to Christ. Through his commitment to God to live for His glory and gospel, thousands were saved.

Therefore Paul gives us the spiritual secret for spiritual success, it is the Spiritual Connection with Christ in us! He explains that Christ dwells in us and is with us wherever we go, bearing fruit and conforming us into His image. Paul wants to stress the point that it is not on his power that he ministers, it is through Christ who dwells in him.

Lastly, Paul shows us the instrument we need to use is our Spiritual Communication of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is through the preaching, teaching, and counsel of the good news and the word of God that completes a man and saved his soul.

I. Spiritual Condition

First, Paul renders an exposition on the Spiritual Condition of the Colossians. This is to demonstrate what Christ has truly done by painting a portrait of our depravity and how we were enemies of God, but through the bloody death of Jesus Christ, we have been reconciled to the Father, where we will be glorified in heaven one day.

1. (v.1:21) – Alienation
The Greek word for alienated means “estranged from God.” It means separation from God.
Ephesians 2:12 teaches us that being alienated means your without God, “That at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.”

2. (v.1:22) – Reconciliation
The substitutionary death of Jesus Christ paid the penalty of sin on the cross for all who believe.
Romans 5:10 reminds us, “For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.”

3. (v.1:22b) – Justification
Romans 4:23-24, “But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.”

4. (v.1:23) – Glorification
Paul uses an architectural terminology, a house, firmly set on the foundation. Colosse was located in a region of known earthquakes, and the word for “moved away” can mean “earthquake stricken.” Therefore, if you are built on the firm foundation in Christ, nothing will move you, and thus proving you’re saved not keeping you saved. Jesus is truly our hope in glory(v.27), that one day we will be with Him in heaven, glorified! “Christ is the hope of glory. The ground of our hope is Christ, the gospel revelation, declaring the nature and methods of obtaining it. The evidence of our hope is Christ in the heart, or the sanctification of the soul, and its preparation for the heavenly glory.” – Matthew Henry commentary

Hebrews 3:6 encourages us, “Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.”

II. Spiritual Commitment
Secondly, Paul reinforces the Colossians about his Spiritual Commitment to the Gospel. His authenticity and apostleship to the Colossians is clearly defined and described as a minister called by God to preach the gospel. He explains his suffering and ministry to reach the Gentile world (that the Colossians lived in) and how God has willed for all nations, tribes, and tongues to receive the Gospel.

Paul authenticates his apostleship by demonstrating what He has done for the Colossians and the church. He was suffering, and in his afflictions he was rejoicing because God was using Him to get the Gospel out and share to the Gentile world. “It is worth the pain,” Paul says.

1. (v.1:24) – Paul suffered for Christ personally.
2. (v. 1:25) – Paul suffered for the Church specifically.

III. Spiritual Connection
Thirdly, Paul reveals our Spiritual Connection with Christ. He reveals the mystery, the secret to life - Jesus Christ lives in us! Jesus is the hope of glory. He is the One who satisfies, sanctifies, and strengthens us in our lives. It’s the indwelling Christ that conforms us to His image and to live in God’s will.

1.(v.1:25) -To fufill the word of God – Paul was to preach the New Covenant to the Gentiles as prophesized in the Old Testament (Isaiah 42, 45, 49, 52, 60)

Jeremiah 31:31-34 shows us, “Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah--not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day [that] I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the LORD. But this [is] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,' for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more."

2. (v.1:26) – It has now been revealed to the believers in Christ.
3. (v.1:27) – God willed for the Gospel to be available for everyone, not just the Jewish nation.

CHRIST IN YOU – The indwelling Christ.

If you haven't heard about The Secret yet you will. The Secret, a 216 page book, is written by Rhonda Byrne. The book claims to offer its readers the secret "to everything - the secret to unlimited joy, health, money, relationships, love, youth: everything you have ever wanted." As Don Whitney points out, The Secret is nothing other than the "Name It and Claim It, Positive-Confession, Prosperity Theology (minus God and the Bible), built on a foundation of New Age self-deification." The book basically is saying the secret lies in the inner-self. It is solely in you. Basically saying your god.

Well they got half of that right. The world will try anything to figure out the mystery of life. The mystery of life is Jesus Christ living inside our hearts. He gives us purpose and meaning for our life. He is the purpose and meaning of life! It's all about Jesus my friends. He is presently moving and patiently working in our hearts to be more like Him. “The indwelling Spirit of Christ is the guarantee to each believer of future glory.” – John MacArthur

IV. Spiritual Communication
Fourthly, Paul reminds them the primary goal of ministry is about Spiritual Communication with others. He firmly educates the Colossians that the Christian faith is all about the gospel. It is what we are to peach, it is what we warn people about, and it is what we teach with all wisdom so others can understand and grow in Christ. Paul was the ultimate example of this as he labored vigorously, yet it was Christ in Him that produced the fruitful results in his walk.

1. (v.1:28) – The gospel is preached, used for counsel, and is taught to others to complete and mature them in Christ.

2. (v.1:29) – Paul’s ministry was evidence of the indwelling Christ, powerfully moving through him to reach the Gentile world with the Gospel.

Paul defines his regenerated life boldly in the book of Galatians. He points out that the old man has been crucified and the new man in Christ was been resurrected to life. His life now is flowing with the indwelling presence of the Spirit of Christ. He lives now with Christ in control of His life.

“For I have been crucified with Christ, it is no longer I who live, but Christ in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20

Wrapping Up.
Paul has revealed to us 4 keep spiritual secrets for spirtual success.

1. Understand your Spiritual Condition. Remember where you were before you were saved and where you are presently in Christ. This will cause a greater devotion in our life towards God which will want you to be more faithful and fruitful.

2. Keep your Spiritual Commitment. Obey God’s word and do his will no matter how tough things are and how long it takes to accomplish. Be committed to Christ and He will use you.

3. Know your Spiritual Connection. Christ dwells in us and empowers us to do mighty things for His Kingdom. We need to recognize that with Christ, we can do all things through Him who strengthens us.

4. Use your Spiritual Communication. Get out there and minister to people with the word of God. The goal is for us to preach the gospel and disciple people to fulfill the Great Commission.

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