The entirety of the notes have been downloaded on GRACE PLACE under the heading of Colossians Rooted 2019-2020
I would encourage you to do a bit at a time with your study buddy which I am outlining beginning today! Be blessed!
Colossians Study 6 – Focusing on the truth, remembering who we are and living it out
This month’s passage builds on the teaching Kathy gave us last month: we are complete and united with Christ, we need to add nothing. Christ is our reality and this frees us to live in Him. You need to bear this in mind as it is the foundation of this month’s passage which starts “Since…”
“SINCE / BECAUSE / DUE TO THIS”: Our passage only makes sense in light of the truth that he has just stated.; that Christ has done everything we need to be reconciled to God through his death on the cross.
(Note 1: It would be a great idea to read through Colossians again up to this point. The wonder of all of this is our HEARTS are changed. Our MOTIVES change. Our IDENTITY is changed. That is the only way the rest of this makes sense and is even possible!
Note 2: The following notes are in great part provided by Mark Meynell, Colossians: Confident Christianity, and Colossians and Philemon for You)
“Being rescued by Jesus and having complete assurance as the result of His finished reconciling work is no excuse for an unchanged life. He is now our Lord. He did it all in order to restore everything in the universe to its rightful place under His authority (compare 1v18). We have been raised with Christ and therefore need to live lives that reflect that (3v14). For this to happen, we need to depend on Christ all the more and work hard at serving Him and His people through everything.” Mark Meynell
READ Colossians 3:1-4 What Has Already Happened to Believers
“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honour at God’s right hand. 2 Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. 3 For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 And when Christ, who is your[a] life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.” NLT
This is so profound! Really take time to reflect on this! It is the driving force for our thoughts and actions. In chapter 2, Paul outlines the finished work of Jesus and the confidence a Christian can have as a result. In chapter 3, he spells out the implications this must have for everyday living. That can mean anything -from our texting, commenting on FB, how we drive our cars, how we are with others in the queue in Sainsburys, how we bring up our children, how we treat people with irritating jobs like telemarketers or airport officials. There is no part of our lives which is “hidden in Christ” that is excluded in our everyday lives.
Because we have been raised with Christ, (3v1), we should raise our sights to where He is and where one day we will be. Then we will inevitably want to live in a way that reflects where we belong (in heaven, not in this world) and to whom we belong (Jesus Christ is our master- no one else is). It is possible to know that a Christian has already been raised with Christ because of what happened at the cross and resurrection. It is now as if there is a seat reserved in heaven for each person in Christ and marked with each person’s name (3v3-4)Of course we can’t see it yet-but we trust in God’s promises supremely because of his track record in Christ. So this is the big perspective which shapes the rest of what is said in this chapter. What wonderful news! Everything in our lives is affected by this massive change in WHO WE ARE. We are called to live out a new life in Jesus Christ, both as individuals and as a church. These verses are so full of confidence and comfort in the implications of Christ’s work on our behalf and in our union with Him! So what does this look like in our everyday, Covid-19, self-distancing lives? Well I came across this explanation of “being hidden with Christ”, which I found very helpful and want to share with you:
“At the cross, the full, unbridled wrath of God came down upon Jesus, and, in that moment of judgement, there was nowhere for Jesus to hide. No fig leaves or shade trees. No mercy, no grace, no compassion. Jesus, for us, is exposed to the all-consuming expression of sin’s cruelty and the wrath of God. No friends come to defend Him; no lamb is offered in His place; no one negotiates His release. Clothed in our shame, crowned with our thorns, and exposed to the judgement of God that we deserve—Jesus is our hiding place. Outside of Christ, there is no safe place to hide, but being found in Christ there is peace and safety. ‘Rock of ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in thee.’” Eric Watkins -Ligonier Ministries
Reflection: Are there any routines you could develop that might help you to refocus regularly on the life that you have in Christ?
See you next Thursday with our next portion of study. XO