Summary: Remembering and being thankful for all God has done enables us to be strong and prepared for the return of Christ Jesus.
Colossians 1: 10 – 20 / Strong and Prepared
Intro: One day as a Pastor was walking down a country lane he saw a young farmer struggling with a load of hay that had fallen off his truck. The boy was hot and sweaty and looked very upset. The Pastor stopped and urged the young man to stop and rest for a moment and then he would give him a hand. “No thanks,” said the young man. “My father wouldn’t like it.” “Don’t be silly, the Pastor said. “Everyone needs a break now and then. Come have a drink of water and rest.” The young man refused saying his father would be really upset. Losing patience, the pastor 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.”
I. The church at Colossae had a similar problem. They were a driven church seeking to please their father.
A. VS. 11 – 12 Here Paul praises the church and urges them to continue saying, “being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience,”
B. the GK word endunamoumenoi suggests a steady accession of strength --- continually growing stronger. This strength that God supplies is manifested in endurance. It is not the kind of strength that seeks an outlet in domination or self-assertion.
C. Another GK word here is hypomone. It is the capacity to see things through; to stand fast against affliction and disappointment and long trials.
II. Why is it so necessary to endure and have patience?
A. VS. 13 - 14 gives the Colossians and us the answer to the why? “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
B. Thankfulness to God for all that God has done for believers in Christ is clearly one of the most essential Christian qualities for Paul and should be for us as well.
C. This week we will celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. It is appropriate for us to be grateful for what God has done for us.
1) we are qualified to share in the inheritance of the saints.
2) through our relationship to God’s son, we experience
3) Christ Jesus makes the invisible God visible for us.
III. In verses 15 – 20 Paul uses a pre-existing hymn or poem to declare God’s revelation through Christ and assert the reign of Christ throughout the entire world.
A. Paul’s view of Christ here emphasizes his divinity by saying that he is one who: participates in creation, holds all things together, and reconciles all things in heaven and on earth through his death on the cross.
B. These verses emphasize the fact that Christ is not only the agent by which all of creation came into being; but also is the conduit by which all of creation is reconciled to God.
C. Christ is the ruler over all whose reign is established by his crucifixion and resurrection. . . Becoming a christian is like moving to a new place where everything is different.
Conclu: Do you remember the first time you moved into your current home? Do you remember what excited you about that “new” place? But, after a few years, the newness began to wear off and you began to notice things you’d never seen before. The newness wore off and so you got bored with what you had and may have even wished for something more or different. That’s how we can get with our faith if we forget what we have. If we forget, get bored or distracted. We can become weak instead of strong. We can become complacent instead of prepared. During the Thanksgiving holiday, I urge you to take time to remember what God has done for you and be thankful that you may be strong and prepared for the return of Christ Jesus.