Summary: This is the 3rd sermon in the series "Church On The Move".

Series: Church On The Move (Colossians)[#3]


Colossians 1:13-23


We live in a world where material things seem to matter a lot; but I believe that many people are not as concerned about how many things they have as they are about how important they are. There is a reason that our culture enjoys all of these reality shows; and shows of the rich and famous.

This is not a new problem. Even the disciples struggled with wanting to be the greatest.

Matthew 20:20-28 (NIV)

[20] Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor of him. [21] "What is it you want?" he asked. She said, "Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom." [22] "You don’t know what you are asking," Jesus said to them. "Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?" "We can," they answered. [23] Jesus said to them, "You will indeed drink from my cup, but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared by my Father." [24] When the ten heard about this, they were indignant with the two brothers. [25] Jesus called them together and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. [26] Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, [27] and whoever wants to be first must be your slave-- [28] just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

Paul settles the dispute of who is the greatest in our text today. Jesus is the greatest because…

He Rescued Us

I am afraid that in our churches we no longer believe practically that Jesus is the Savior of the world. We believe that Jesus is a means to an end. We believe that Jesus is there to make us better husbands and better fathers. We believe that Jesus is there to make us better wives and better mothers. We believe that Jesus is there to make us better businessmen. We believe that Jesus is there to make us more respected in our community. We believe that Jesus is there for many things. We have forgotten that Jesus’ prime reason for coming to this earth was to seek and save that which was lost.

Colossians 1:13-23 (NIV)

[13] For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, [14] in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. [15] He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. [16] For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. [17] He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. [18] And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. [19] For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, [20] and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. [21] Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. [22] But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation-- [23] if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

I love that Paul starts here by showing the guilt of man. We don’t like that. We don’t like to be shown that we are sinners. Paul starts with guilt. Look in verse 13. “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness.” That’s where we were, in darkness. “… and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves”. That’s where we were not. “In whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” We had to be redeemed and forgiven from our sins. That had to happen because we are guilty before God.

There are some people who believe that man is basically good. Those people don’t have kids. My first kid taught me that we are all sinners. My second kid taught me that some people are bigger sinners than others. My third kid just confirmed all of the above. We are born in sin and shaped in iniquity.

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