Sermon: Introduction to Colossians 1:1-2

September 24, 2017


Sermon: Introduction to Colossians Colossians 1:1-2
What is the background and reason for Paul writing to the Colossians?  Was there a heresy Paul was confronting?  If so, what was it and how does this help with our interpretation?  Today, we will discuss our completeness and fullness in Christ alone.  Too often we want to combine truth with something else.  The Gospel of Christ + something else.  The reformers recognized this and called for Sola Christus, which means “in Christ alone.”  They believed, in grace alone, through faith alone, and in Christ alone.  Not Christ + something else.
One Way Christian Center is a Reformed Baptist Church, located in Olustee, OK close to Altus, OK and Altus AFB.
Consider joining us for service.  Sunday service starts at 10:30 AM and Wednesday service starts at 7 PM.
 By: Bryan Walker Given on: 9/24/2017  Sermon plays on KWHW 93.5 FM on: 10/8/2017
Sermon Notes:
Colossians 1:1-2 ESV  
    • Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God by the will of God
        • Paul’s authority
        • Timothy as a brother
        • Paul is serving at the pleasure and will of God
    • Grace a Christian/gentile greeting
        • Grace is a relatively new HIGHLY important doctrine
    • Peace, Shalom – a Jewish greeting
        • Traditional AGE OLD doctrine/greeting
    • The new covenant brings the old and new together
        • The fulfillment of the old
        • The beginning of the new
and the Lord Jesus Christ.
    • Newer translations omit
    • Not in the best manuscripts
    • Some scribes must have added it, to make it similar to Paul’s the other greetings
Philippians 1:2 ESV  Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
    • Paul expounds on the person and work of Christ later in chapter 1
    • Can’t wait to preach on this section
    • Very exciting, God glorifying and fulfilling letter
    • Location – In modern day turkey (map)
        • Close to Laodicea and Hierapolis (hot springs)
    • Mentions all 3 cities
        • Col_4:13  for those in Laodicea and in Hierapolis.
Revelation 3:16 ESV  So, because you are lukewarm
    • Close to the Lycus river
    • Trade was wool
    • City was declining
    • Ancient ruins today.  Fields (Google Earth)
    • Epaphras brought them the gospel
Colossians 1:7 ESV  
    • ?? Letter to Philemon
        • Philemon, and 3 or 4 other named people- from Colossae
        • Epaphras is now in prison with Paul
        • Philemon 1:23   Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus
    • Paul [MOST LIKELY] did not visit Colossae
2:1 …for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face
    • Paul’s trip to Ephesus -100 to 130 miles to the West
    • Epaphras was probably one of the 12 mentioned in Acts 19
Acts 19:7  
    • All the residents of Asia would include Colossae, Laodicea and in Hierapolis
        • The word all – every single resident???
        • Jew and Gentile – wide spread
    • Authorship – No early church fathers question authorship
        • Language in question today?  Words he uses
        • Argued – Paul uses the language of his opponents
        • This will become more clear as we describe the opponents
    • Very important – miss a lot without it
        • The Colossian Heresy, what is it???
    • We don’t have the report from Epaphras
        1. But we have Paul’s side of the argument
        2. Historical religious setting
Dr. Lightfoot and S Lewis Johnson
    • Jews – Sadducees, Pharisees and Essenes
    • Gnostics
        • Hybrid – “Gnostic Judaism
    • Essenes – extremely strict Jewish sect
        • Would go out of his way not to touch anything
        • No wine, no animal food
            • Eat bread and vegetables
        • Special consecrated officers for preparing food
        • Excommunication often meant starvation
            • Expound
    • Gnostics
        • Physical world was evil and corruption
            • For there to be evil God MUST have limited Himself
        • Believed distant Sub creature (angelic beings)
            • This sub-creature could create the evil in the world
                • Problem of evil solved
                • Worshiped these sub creatures (angels)
                • Mediator between men and God were angelic beings
                • God made it good through Jesus Christ (Chapter 1)
        • Spiritual over the physical
            • Spiritual = good, Physical = bad
            • Spirit of a man is trapped in this body
            • Flesh is evil, God cannot inhabit evil flesh
                • Need for chapter 1
        • Mystical worship, cultish
        • Had a hidden knowledge
            • Private club, elitists group of higher knowledge
            • They had the “mysteries” all figured out
    • Explains Paul’s use of the words “wisdom, intelligence, knowledge, perfect knowledge, mysteries.”
“Gnostic Judaism” DRIVES 2 Extremes asceticism and indulgence of the flesh
  1. World is evil – avoid everything you can, Colossians 2:21 ESV  “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch”
  2. World is evil – Oh well… do whatever you want
On one hand – Colossians 2:18 ESV  
Asceticism – severe self-discipline and avoidance of all forms of indulgence
On the other hand – Colossians 3:8 ESV  
Colossians 1:19 ESV  For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,
Colossians 2:9 ESV  For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily,
Colossians 2:3 ESV  in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
Col 2:10 ESV  and you have been filled in him
Col 2:10 NKJV  and you are complete in Him
    • Christ + Something else
    • Gospel + Self-worth (brings fullness)
        • Gospel + Self-esteem (brings fullness)
    • Gospel + mystical spiritual experience (to experience fullness)
    • Gospel + works
    • Reformers used Colossians to counter the Roman Catholic sacramental system as requirements for salvation
    • Gospel + (sacramental system, 7 sacraments)
        • In Grace Alone
        • In Faith Alone
        • In Christ Alone
    • Council of Trent – Counter-Reformation
CANON IV.- If any one saith, that the sacraments of the New Law are not necessary unto salvation, but superfluous; and that, without them, or without the desire thereof, men obtain of God, through faith alone, the grace of justification; -though all (the sacraments) are not necessary for every individual; let him be anathema.
Truth + something else = False
Truth – something else = False
    • Fulness is found in Christ alone
        • These additional things may or may not be evil
        • However, if they are added to the work of Christ is evil
    • Was Christ not sufficient? (EXPOUND)
    • Your fullness is in Christ.
Heresy – They did not deny the necessity of Jesus for salvation but denied his work as sufficient.  You must observe or do something else or you are disqualified.  
Colossians 2:18 ESV  
    • Glorify God and Jesus Christ and grow together, …through this letter
    • Recognize our fullness is in Christ
    • Grow firm in our faith and beliefs
        • Put our focus back on Jesus Christ
    • You should rest in Jesus Christ
    • Have grace and peace in God
        • He has accomplished all things for us
        • Avoid asceticism and lawlessness
    • Recognize the extremes
        • Let no one disqualify you
Seek Christ alone and we will be full, overflowing

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