This message was preached by Gary Welsh at Word of Grace Church on October 2nd, 2016. To listen/download the audio please click here. To listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here
Scripture reference- Colossians 1:1-14
Paul is writing to the churches in now modern Turkey. This is a new church plant and he wants to keep them on track. The summary would be that Jesus is enough. It's all about Jesus. Saved through him, changed through him and glorified through him. Jesus working in will change us.
Paul was in Prison when he wrote this letter. Our circumstances might change but not Jesus. You may look at your own situation and the nation and wonder what's going on, where will it end?
We need to pray for our government, but more than that, we need dynamic storing churches living in the power of Jesus Christ and proclaiming the kingdom. All these things make us wake up to prayer.
Some of us have difficulties in our own personal lives. The answer is still Jesus and that we have to live for Jesus. This is the gospel. The King of glory died for me. It's not philosophy, better laws and justice. It's Jesus.
1. It’s a call to God’s people:
Paul is praying that they will be filled with the knowledge of his will in our lives.
Verse 13 says- “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves”
Followers of Jesus should know His will in order that we will express the truth of Jesus in our lives. Paul is now writing to people whose lives have been dramatically changed by Jesus and should live as such. It’s not a self help group.
Not everything is broken in the world. See the Taj Mahal! But there is brokenness everywhere.
Romans 1: 21- “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.” Brokenness is a default setting.
Q. Which kingdom are you in? Light or darkness?
This is a very important question. The world thinks this is a rude question but this is the truth. You may be a nice person but that is not enough. You stand before God and cast yourself on God's mercy. Don't do a ritual. Either this is true for you or not.
2. It's a call to know the will of God.
Q. How do we know this?
I can know what God is doing on the planet right now. That is amazing! We can know his desires, intentions etc. It's amazing that we could. This is important so that we will produce fruit in our lives. So that we will look like who God's people should look like. And God gets the glory.
3. What can we do that will help us?
· It is Jesus plus nothing. Paul is emphasizing this. No man made regulations. No new philosophy. If we want to know the will of God we need to know Jesus fully. As Paul went around churches they did not leave books of instructions. They trusted the work of the Holy Spirit to glorify Jesus and show his works. Jesus told the disciples to wait for the Holy Spirit. If you want to know what God is doing you need to be full of the Holy Spirit. This should be our daily prayer.
· Scripture- This is important to keep wrong things outside the church. We have a record of Jesus’ life. That's why this book is written. That's why we don't sacrifice animals anymore. The Old Testament was all about Jesus. Knowing and understanding Jesus means we should know our Bibles. This generation does not read anymore. We need to get into the scriptures and ask the holy Spirit for understanding. If you want a plumb line about whether you know Jesus and the scriptures it's love. We need to love each other.
· Community. God is about community. He is gathering a people to himself. Paul expected husband and wives to be in the same place, children to be in the same place and masters and slaves to be in the same place of worship.
Luke 24:27- “And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.” This is the only context you get both on the same place. We need to learn to follow Jesus together. Otherwise we can just be in on a Sunday meeting and no one shaping you, speaking into your life. Bearing with each other happens as you do life together. We do all this in community.
In Galatians Paul says that all the law is reduced to this: You’d think he will say love God. But he says love your neighbour as yourself.
Q. Do you know Jesus?
Q. If you are a follower of Jesus are we getting to know him?
If you are stuck, get into community. Where you can belong and not a church you just attend.
Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again), Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.