In christ the fullness of the godhead

                                     IN CHRIST THE FULLNESS OF THE GOD HEAD

                                                 PRESENTED BY STEVEN SCHILLER

Col 2:9  For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. 

Col 2:10  And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: 

Col 2:11  In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: 

Col 2:12  Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. 

Col 2:13  And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 

Col 2:14  Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; 

Col 2:15  And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. 

Let No One Disqualify You

Col 2:16  Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: 

Col 2:17  Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ. 

Col 2:18  Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 

Col 2:19  And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God. 

Col 2:20  Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, 

Col 2:21  (Touch not; taste not; handle not; 

Col 2:22  Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? 

Col 2:23  Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh. 


                

INTRODUCTION

1. It was Paul's desire that his brethren be "perfect (complete) in

Christ" - Col 1:28; 2:1,2-3

2. But there were influences at Colosse which endangered their

salvation, against which Paul warns in Col 2:8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21-23

3. As we consider what those threats were, we see similar threats today

as well!

4. In other words, subtle (and some not so subtle) influences which may

promise us much, but can easily lead us away from Christ!

[For example, we notice from verses 8-10 that at Colosse there was the

danger of...]

I. PHILOSOPHIES AND TRADITIONS OF MEN (Col 2:8-10)

A. THE DANGER OF MAN-MADE PHILOSOPHY AND TRADITION...

1. They "cheat" you

a. They don't deliver what they may promise

b. They can even cheat you of your salvation!

1) By rendering our worship and service to God as "vain"

2) As Jesus warned in Mt 15:9

2. This they do through "empty deceit"

a. It is not evident (otherwise, none would accept it)

b. But like many of the workings of Satan, it is through

"deception"

B. WE ARE FACED WITH SIMILAR INFLUENCES TODAY...

1. The "philosophies" of:

a. Atheism

b. Evolution

c. Humanism

2. The "traditions of men," found rampant in:

a. Protestant denominations

b. Catholicism (both "Roman" and "Orthodox")

c. Various cults

3. Though these "philosophies" and "traditions of men" may possess

a lot of truth, it is the error in them that can lead one away

from the pure and simple doctrine of Jesus Christ!

C. WE NEED TO KEEP IN MIND...

1. In "Jesus Christ" are found ALL the treasures of wisdom and

knowledge - Col 2:3

2. In "Jesus Christ" is to be found the FULLNESS of the Godhead

bodily - Col 2:9

3. In "Jesus Christ" we are COMPLETE - Col 2:10

4. As Peter wrote in his second epistle: "Grace and peace be

multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our

Lord, as His divine power has given to us ALL things that

pertain to life and godliness , through the knowledge of Him

who called us by glory and virtue," - 2Pe 1:2-3

[So "Believer, Beware!" when anyone suggests that we need the

philosophies or traditions of men in addition to or instead of Jesus

Christ!

In verses Col 2:11,12,13,14,15-17, Paul deals with what was a real problem in the first

century church...]

II. JUDAISTIC CEREMONIALISM (11-17)

A. THE PROBLEM IN THE FIRST CENTURY CHURCH...

1. Many Jewish Christians felt it necessary for Gentile Christians

to be circumcised and keep the Law of Moses in ADDITION to

following Christ - cf. Ac 15:1,2,3,4-5

2. The early church had to constantly deal with this problem

a. Which they did at Jerusalem (where the problem originated)

- Ac 15:6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25,-27

b. Which Paul did in writing Romans, Galatians, Ephesians, and

Colossians

3. Here in Col 2:11,12,13,14,15-17, Paul deals with the problem by pointing

out:

a. Through baptism into Christ, we experience the "true

circumcision", which is a cutting away of the sins of the

flesh - Col 2:11-13

b. By His death on the cross, Jesus has taken the Old Law out

of the way - Col 2:14-15 (cf. Ep 2:14-16)

c. Therefore, we are to let no one try to judge (condemn) us

in matters of the Old Law - Col 2:16-17

B. TODAY, THERE ARE MANY WHO STILL TRY TO BIND THE OLD LAW UPON

CHRISTIANS...

1. Various denominations with their Sabbaths and food regulations

2. Other religions with their separate priesthood and many other

practices, based upon the Old Testament, and not the New!

C. AS THOSE IN CHRIST...

1. We have died to the Law and Jewish ceremonialism (this

especially pertains to Jewish Christians) - Ro 7:1-6

2. We have been set free, and need to beware of becoming

"entangled again with a yoke of bondage." - Ga 5:1

3. If we seek justification by our observance of things found in

the Old Law, we are fallen from grace! - Ga 5:2,3-4

[So "Believer, Beware!" when people try to impose things upon you which

are based upon the Law of Moses. Remember, "you are complete in HIM."

In verses 18-19, we see there was still another danger at Colosse...]

III. THE WORSHIP OF ANGELS (18-19)

A. WHY WOULD PEOPLE WORSHIP ANGELS?

1. Perhaps because they felt angels were needed as "intercessors"

2. Perhaps with "a sense of humility", they felt they could not go

to God (or even Jesus) directly

B. THE PROBLEM WITH ANGEL WORSHIP...

1. It is actually the result of a "false humility" and based upon

one's "vain imagination" - Col 2:18 (cf. He 4:14-16, where

we learn we can "come boldly to the throne of grace")

2. It actually diverts one away from Christ, the rightful "Head of

the body" - Col 2:19

a. For this reason, angels refused any semblance of worship -

Re 22:8-9

b. And so did the apostle Peter - Ac 10:25-26

C. TODAY, SOME RELIGIONS HAVE DEVELOPED A COUNTERPART TO THE WORSHIP

OF ANGELS...

1. E.g., Catholicism with its veneration of Mary and the "saints"

2. The reasoning is similar: "humility" ("We need them to

intercede for us")

3. Though an attempt is made to distinguish between "veneration"

and "worship", in practice the distinction is lost among the

average person

4. And the result is still the same: "not holding fast to the

Head," venerating other beings rather than Christ!

[Finally, from verses 20-23 we can glean that there was the problem

of...]

IV. ASCETICISM (20-23)

A. ASCETICISM HAS OFTEN BEEN OFFERED AS A KEY TO "SELF-CONTROL"

1. Such as fasting and other forms of abstinence

2. Or self-flagellation (beating one's self with whips)

B. BUT ASCETICISM IS OF NO REAL VALUE AGAINST THE "INDULGENCE OF THE

FLESH"

1. As Paul points out in Col 2:23

2. Indeed, transformation comes through "renewing the MIND", not

afflicting the BODY

a. As Paul wrote in Ro 12:1-2

b. Yes, those who "set their minds on the things of the Spirit"

are the ones "who live according to the Spirit" - Ro 8:5

1) They are the ones who by the Spirit will be able to "put

to death the deeds of the body" - Ro 8:13

2) For the "fruit of the Spirit" includes self-control - Ga

5:22-23

C. TODAY, WE MUST BEWARE OF THE FALSE CLAIMS OF ASCETICISM!

1. Fasting may have a place in the lives of Christians - cf. Ac

13:2-3; 14:23; 1Co 7:5; 2Co 11:27

a. But not for the purpose of developing self-control!

b. Rather as a means of humbling oneself before God as we pray,

that God might hear our prayer - cf. Ezr 8:21; Mt 6:17-18

2. Those religions that would teach various forms of "asceticism"

as a means of developing spiritual maturity would have us

believe that "the secret" is in such "neglect of the body"

3. But Christ is "the secret", and by holding fast to Him we find

the ability to "crucify the flesh with its passions and

desires." - Ga 5:24

CONCLUSION

1. As we live the Christian life, attempting to mature spiritually,

beware of any doctrine or teaching of man that suggests we need more

than Jesus Christ!

2. Remember, He is "THE" way (not "A" way) - Jn 14:6

3. And we are COMPLETE in Him!

Are you IN Him? - cf. Ga 3:26-27...

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