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Summary: Let no-one……… (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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Reading: Colossians chapter 2 verses 4-15.

Ill:

A reporter was interviewing an old man on his 100th birthday.

• “What are you most proud of?” he asked.

• “Well, “ said the man, “I don’t have an enemy in the world.”

• “What a beautiful thought! How inspirational!” said the reporter.

• “Yep,” added the centenarian, “outlived every last one of them.”

Ill:

• There was a pastor of a local Church,

• Who was concerned about some unsavoury business outside his local school:

• His protests finally led to a court case,

• And the opposing barrister tried to do everything he could to discredit the pastor.

• “Are you a pastor?” the lawyer asked.

• “Yes” came the reply.

• The lawyer continued, “Does the word pastor mean shepherd?”

• The minister replied “Yes it does”.

• The lawyer then said;

• “If you are a shepherd , why are you not out taking care of your sheep?”

• The pastor replied;

• “I am caring for the sheep by fighting the wolves”.

Paul was very aware that enemies were attacking the Church at Colosse:

• And so Paul offered them some encouragement and advice,

• If they heeded his warning the Colossians could overcome their enemies.

• Ill: Now a sheep would never be able to scare off a wolf,

• But a sheep protected by and in the company of the Good Shepherd can!

Let no-one deceive you (verse 4&8).

Verse 4:

4”I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments”.

Verse 8:

“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”.

• Every Christian has an enemy called Satan;

• His plan is always the same, to deceive and to lead believers astray,

• And one of the ways he does this;

• Is by using deceptive words.

Ill:

The Greek term used here in verse 4:

• Describes the persuasive arguments of a lawyer.

• Who is doing his best to defend his client, even though he knows his client is guilty!

• Satan is a liar,

• And by his lies he wants to lead believers away from Christ

In warning the Christians at Colossae of the evil ones strategy:

• Paul used several vivid word picture;

• Grasping hold of these truths will help us overcome the enemy.

(1). The army (verse 5):

5For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is.

Ill:

• Dwight L. Moody did not want his song leader Ira Sankey;

• To use the hymn ‘Onward Christian soldiers’

• Why? Well, Mr Moody thought that the Church as he knew it;

• Did not look or act like an army of Christian soldiers.

Quote: C.T. Studd powerful writing ‘The Chocolate Soldier’.

• THE OTHERWISE CHRISTIAN IS A Chocolate Christian,

• Dissolving in water and melting at the smell of fire.

• Sweeties they are! Bonbons, lollipops!

• Living their lives in a glass dish or in a cardboard box,

• Each clad in his soft clothing,

• A little frilled white paper to preserve his dear little delicate constitution.

• Too many of us as Christians want an easy life.

• What we do is often a show, looking good to please others!

• When actually each Christian is called to enlist in a war.

• We are in a battle and expected to fight hard!

In verse 5 a soldier is pictured:

• The words “Order” and “Firm” or “Stead fastness” are military terms.

• They describe an army that is solidly united against the enemy.

Ill:

• “Order “describes the arrangement of the army in ranks,

• With each soldier in his proper place.

• Not everybody can be a five-star general,

• But •the general could never fight the battle alone.

Ill:

• “Standing firm” or “Steadfastness” pictures the soldiers in battle formation,

• Presenting a solid front to the enemy.

• Christians ought to make progress in discipline and obedience,

• Just as soldiers on the battlefield.

(2). The pilgrim (verse 6):

ill:

• Late last century,

• An American tourist paid a visit to a renowned Polish rabbi, Hofetz Chaim.

• He was astonished to see that the rabbi’s home was only a simple room filled with books,

• Plus a table and a cot.

• The tourist asked, "Rabbi, where is your furniture?"

• Hofetz Chaim replied, "Where is yours?"

• The puzzled American asked, "Mine? But I’m only a visitor here. I’m only passing through."

• The rabbi replied, "So am I."

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