Temple Baptist Church - 2-13-2013
A. The first chapter of Colossians predominantly centers around our knowledge of Jesus Christ. One of the greatest things that a pastor, evangelist, or missionary can do is exalt Jesus Christ in his preaching.
John 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. (In its context, this verse refers to the sacrificial death of Christ. When Christ is “lifted up,” men are drawn to his love and compassion. Salvation is so much more than a “fear” thing: it is a love “thing.” It is important to show Christ in light of John 3:16. That verse say, “For God so loved the world.” Saved people love the Lord.)
B. It is equally important for the Lord Jesus Christ to be “lifted up” in the sight of the saints within the local church. That same Christ who died for our sins continues to love us in spite of what and who we are. Chapter one spends much time exalting the Lord to the Colossian people.
C. Matthew 16:13-14 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? (14) And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. (The world has no concept of who Christ is because of willfulness. As the liberal press covers who President Obama is and demonizes anyone who disagrees with him, so the “historians” do the same. Jesus Christ’s person has been preached throughout the world in the lifetime of the apostles. If the world recognizes Jesus Christ at all, it is still in the light of this statement in verse 14.)
D. Matthew 16:15-17 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? (16) And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. (17) And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. (Herein rests the profession of our faith: the child of God KNOWS who Jesus Christ is! We that are saved confess that Jesus Christ is Lord! I know whom I have believed and I know who lives within me. I did not change because I got a little religion but Jesus Christ changed who I was and am.)
E. Now, back to our verses: it is of the utmost important that the Lord Jesus Christ be “lifted up” continually before God’s people. It is the knowledge of Him that causes us to both confess and consecrate our lives in His service. These verses
1. In Jesus Christ, we see the Person of God. “Who is the image of the invisible God” Hebrews 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. (He is the express image of the invisible God. God is spirit. Man was made in the “image” of God. An image is a “likeness” so man is in the likeness of God. Jesus Christ is the “express image” of God. He is an EXACT copy! The manifestation of the glory of God is found in Jesus Christ. God’s glory is found in Exodus 34 as God passed by Moses (who was hid in the clift of the rock with God’s hand shielding him). Moses requested to see the glory of God and this is what God allowed him to hear on Mt. Sinai and to see over his lifetime. In Jesus Christ, we see every attribute of the Godhead.)
Exodus 34:6-7 And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, (7) Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.
2. In Jesus Christ, we see the Power of God. “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him” Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 is an astounding, mind blowing verse. I often say that it is the most profound theological statement found in the Bible as we see God, with nothing in His hand, speaking this universe into existence. The Bible declares Jesus Christ to be the Creator of all things. We often hear the words “intelligent design” when referring to the universe’s beginnings but these are the words of unbelief in who this Intelligence is. We hear the words “the fingerprint of God” and the conclusions drawn are closer to who He is but the Bible is clear on the subject. Jesus Christ, Jehovah God in the flesh, created all things.)
3. In Jesus Christ, we see the Purpose of God. “and for him” Romans 11:36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen. (Everything was created by Jesus Christ and everything belongs to Him. What a privilege to be His prized possession! All is His and He allows us to enjoy it all. I appreciate everything that I have. In the eyes of some, I have little but I can say that God has blessed me. My family, my friends, my salvation, my church, my home and possessions, and my eternal hope come from Him. All that I have is to God’s glory and I am grateful.)
4. In Jesus Christ, we see the Preeminence of God. “And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.” John 1:1-3 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (2) The same was in the beginning with God. (3) All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. (Jesus Christ is truly Lord of lords and King of kings. He is the Ruler and Potentate of the universe; He is the Head of the church; and He is the Lord of the saint. When you put Him first, it is only then that you find and fulfill the purpose for which you were made.)