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Summary: THE SUFFICIENCY OF CHRIST PROTECTS US AGAINST FALSE TEACHING

BIG IDEA:

THE SUFFICIENCY OF CHRIST PROTECTS US AGAINST FALSE TEACHING

INTRODUCTION

Have we truly grasped the concept that we are complete in Christ?

That He is sufficient for everything we will ever need?

Why should we ever be attracted by empty philosophies that attempt to add something else on

to the person and work of Jesus Christ?

“Complete in Thee! no work of mine May take, dear Lord, the place of Thine;

Thy blood hath pardon bought for me, And I am now complete in Thee.

Yea, justified! O blessed thought! And sanctified! Salvation wrought!

Thy blood hath pardon bought for me, And glorified, I too, shall be!”

Key = There are no Short Cuts to spirituality

I. (:8-9) ALL TRUTH MUST BE MEASURED AGAINST THE STANDARD OF CHRIST = WHO IS GOD INCARNATE

A. Spiritual Discernment Requires Spiritual Alertness

“See to it that no one takes you captive”

Kidnap, take hostage

Need to be constantly on the look out with eyes wide open; Pres. Tense

Guard your spiritual freedom and don’t allow anyone to take you captive

Rob you of your life, hope, energy, joy

Gromacki: “The heretical teacher, therefore, is like a slave trader. He wants to steal the believer

away from his spiritual family and sell him as a slave into false doctrine.”

B. Spiritual Discernment Recognizes Deception

cf. the false siren in ancient Greek mythology

3 things that characterize false philosophy:

1. False Wisdom -- “philosophy and empty deception”

Vincent: Greeks held philosophy in highest regard; used here in the sense of vain speculation;

Empty in the sense of void of truth; fruitless; like the inside of a ping pong ball

Morgan: “Sounds good, intellectual, plausible”

Stedman: “hollow – no real content, no actual basis in reality”

2. False Authority -- “according to the tradition of men”

Stedman: “They arise out of the thinking of men, find a foothold in society, and then are passed along from genertion to generation so as to appear popular and

widely supported.” cf. theory of evolution

“An attempt is always made to make it appear that biblical Christianity is a minority fatih, held by only a few ill-educated, almost mentally deficient people, who have no basis in scholarship for what they believe.”

no basis in divine revelation

3. False Logic -- “according to the elementary principles of the world”

Gromacki: “elementary” used of anything which appeared in a row or series; thus, it came to refer to the letters of the alphabet, to the basic notes of music, and to the fundamental components of the material universe; just dealing with the A,B,Cs of this fallen world . . ."

Alternative view: reference to an army of soldiers lined up in a row, in ranks, as in a hierarchy = reference to fallen angels

no grasp of the complexity of the fullness of spiritual truth

C. Spiritual Discernment Regards Christ as the Ultimate Standard

“rather than according to Christ”

Truth sets you free rather than enslaves you

Stedman: “Every cult attacks the person or work of Jesus—or both”

D. KEY: Christ is God Incarnate

“For in Him all the fulness of Deity dwells in bodily form”

lives as a permanent resident rather than as transients

Note Present Tense – Christ continues to possess all the fulness of Deity even in His glorified state (Kent)

embodied, given concrete expression, fully realized in Him

II. (:10) CHRIST IS OUR SUFFICIENCY

A. We are Complete in Him

“and in Him you have been made complete”

B. We Own No Other Master

We do not need Other Mediators or Rulers (even if they are spiritual and powerful)

“and He is the head over all rule and authority”

You will be able to differentiate genuine spiritual leadership from heretical imposters by

their servant attitude

III. (:11-12) OUR UNION WITH CHRIST IS PORTRAYED BY 2 SPIRITUAL ANALOGIES

Deliverance from the Power of the Old nature

Stedman: “Many scholars equate circumcision with baptism, holding that Christian baptism has

taken the place of the old Testament rite of circumcision. But if you look carefully at this verse

it is clear that this is not true. If we are Chrsitians, says Paul, we have been both circumcised and baptized. Thus, they are not the same thing…

Circumcision symbolizes the death of Jesus and our death with him, our dying to sin, as Romans 5 and 6 argues. But baptism stands for our new life with him. When someone is immersed in the waters of baptism he is not left there, he is brought out again to a new life. That is what baptism reflects: the work of the Spirit in imparting new life from Christ, a new

humanity, the human spirit made alive. It is the difference between a true Christian and merely

professing Christian. The true Christian has been made alive in Christ. He has a whole new basis for living.”

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