Some think that we just continue as we always have? But God is a God of bringing back to life that which is dead and decaying. How can God revive us again?
The Apostle Paul said, "See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ" (Col. 2:8). What would be worse than losing your country is losing Christ! See that no one takes you captive and leads you away from Christ!
We believe the Word of God, but how should we deepen our commitment to it as we move forward?
In our previous lesson, Col. 1:20 asserted that Christ would "reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven." As we move further into chapter 1, the next three verses start to expand on the idea of reconciliation. Paul tells the story of Christ, you and reconciliation through four movements in time that take us to the past, present, future and back to the present!
Since Jesus pointed the way when he ascended from the earth, our mission is clear. Make disciples of all the nations. How do we rekindle our passion to win the lost to Christ?
Sometimes nothing speaks to our hearts like a song. The beautiful words of Colossians 1:15-20 are thought to be an ancient song about Christ that Paul included in his message to the Colossians. With the Holy Spirit's stamp of approval, what we find in these verses is an eternal reminder for believers that Christ is first, most important and everything! Christ is all to us!
This lesson begins a new series focused on the book of Colossians. While written to a local church, the focus of Paul seems to be on the Christ of the church. If you take Christ out of the church you are no longer the church! In this lesson, we examine Paul's greeting which reads like a prayer of thanksgiving for them (1:3-12). But in these words, Paul really documents how Christ changed them.
Mary is one of the most interesting and controversial characters in the Bible. Her importance is often overemphasized and, as a result, we may sometimes underemphasize her importance. In the narrative of the birth of Jesus, she has an encounter with Gabriel that reminds us how God used her as an instrument.
Have you ever been a part of something that you felt was bigger than you? I can only imagine that is exactly how Joseph must have felt when an angel appeared to him in a dream and explained his life was about to change (Matt. 1:18-25). Ironically, the angel challenged him to be a part of a story that would change the world! In this story, Joseph serves as a great example of how God will challenge us too.
When the Messiah is born, the fact that shepherds are the first to be given the news speaks both to the character of God and the nature of our own mission today.