Summary: How important is it to remember what Jesus has done for us? There is a danger in forgetting what we have and there is power in what we remember.
OPEN: A clergyman walking down a country lane saw a young farmer struggling with a load of hay that had fallen off his cart. The boy was all hot and sweaty and looked very upset.
"You look hot, my son," said the preacher. "Why don’t you just rest a moment, and then I’ll give you a hand."
"No thanks," said the young man. "My father wouldn’t like it."
"Don’t be silly," the minister said. "Everyone is entitled to a break. Come and have a drink of water."
Again the young man refused saying that his father would be upset.
Losing his patience, the clergyman said, "Your father must be a real slave driver. Tell me where I can find him and I’ll give him a piece of my mind."
"Well," replied the young man, "he’s under the load of hay."
APPLY: That boy knew what he had to do. There was a sense of urgency and to his actions. He was driven and intent and no one could sway him from his goal.
But that didn’t stop somebody from trying.
That preacher had a faulty understanding of what was going on. And (convinced that HE was right) did everything he could to persuade the boy to stop what he was doing.
I. The church at Colossae (to whom Colossians was written) had a similar problem
They were a driven church.
They were a church that is seeking to please their Father
Paul commended them for their faith and love and hope…
But apparently, there was someone trying to convince them to stop what they are doing.
Paul warned the church members to "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ." Colossians 2:8
There were religious people trying to convince them to stop what they were doing. And so Paul urges the Colossians:
"Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you for the prize. Such a person goes into great detail about what he has seen, and his unspiritual mind puffs him up with idle notions." Colossians 2:18
But why? Why did Paul feel it was necessary to warn the Colossians about this danger?
Because, apparently some had become convinced.
Some had been taken captive by this false thinking
Some had become disqualified for the prize
OR… at least they were in danger of doing so
AND SO, Paul warns them - be aware
Don’t be swayed by your thinking
Don’t stop doing what you’ve been doing
II. Now, Colossians is really an intriguing letter.
Many preachers Sunday School Teachers, and even Bible College Professors tend to look on Colossians as some kind of Theological treatise that was written solely to impart good doctrine. It’s as if they believed that the letter to the church at Colossae really had nothing to do with the needs of that specific church.
I have to admit that’s how I’ve always looked at it… until I started to prepare this sermon.
And there’s a good reason why this letter is viewed in this way.
Because, (the way Paul wrote this letter) if you didn’t know there was anything wrong at Colossae… you wouldn’t know there was anything wrong at Colossae
Look at what Paul writes in this the first few verses of the letter - Colossians 1:1-8
"Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, to the holy and faithful brothers in Christ at Colosse: Grace and peace to you from God our Father.
We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints — the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth.
You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, and who also told us of your love in the Spirit."
You see, the first thing Paul does is tell them how proud he is of their faith and loyalty to Jesus
He marvels at how much Jesus has changed their lives, and how impressed he is
AND THEN (in the next few paragraphs) Paul launches into a long description of
What Jesus has done for us as Christians