The Apostle Prays for the Saints

A Study of Colossians 1:9–11

For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; Strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness… (Colossians 1:9–11)

Now we will continue this study in Colossians looking further into the content of Paul’s prayer for these dear saints that he has learned about through Epaphras, his fellowprisoner.  The previous study concentrated on knowledge of the will of God.  Knowing the will of God is the first step to walking worthy, because we cannot walk the path before we know the path.  Indeed, it is also true that we cannot know the path until we walk it, so this is again an iterative process.  We learn, know, and walk, and we learn more as we walk.  The Lord teaches us as we walk.

Greater Riches than Silver and Gold

By Russell S. Miller

“For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich” (IICor.8:9).

When the “wise men” came to Bethlehem with “gold” and “frankincense” and “myrrh” to honor the newborn King, the Lord Jesus was hushed away to Egypt.  Herod sought to murder the “young Child” (Matt.2:1-10)!  He was “despised and rejected of men” in the land of Israel, and amongst His own people, “a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief:  and we hid as it were our faces from Him;  He was despised, and we esteemed Him not” (Isa.53:3).

“He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not.  He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.  But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:10-12).

 The Lord Jesus, Possessor of Heaven and earth—the One who created the gold and the silver and the precious stones, and all the wealth of all the earth that men greedily covet after, became a man, and suffered and bled and died, as a common criminal—such poverty!—for the sins of all mankind.  Jesus Christ was betrayed into the hands of wicked men for “thirty pieces of silver.”  The very One who dwelt in indescribable GLORY subjected Himself to the plight of common humanity, and worse:

“Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

“But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:

“And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Phil.2:6-8).

In his first epistle to Timothy, Paul declares “THAT CHRIST JESUS CAME INTO THE WORLD TO SAVE SINNERS” (ITim.1:15).  God wants to give you greater riches than silver and gold, greater riches than all the treasures in this world, greater riches than money can buy;  God wants to give you eternal life, and the treasures of wisdom and knowledge in knowing Jesus Christ as your Saviour.

“For the wages of sin is death;  but the gift of God is ETERNAL LIFE through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom.6:23).

What a predicament, “guilty before God” (Rom.3:19), and bankrupt—we had nothing with which to pay the debt of our sins against God!

“But God, who is RICH in mercy,” sent His Son to pay our debt of sin, “that ye through His poverty might be rich” (Eph.2:4; IICor.8:9).

“For He hath made Him to be sin for us, [Christ] who knew no sin;  that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (IICor.5:21).

“But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption” (ICor.1:30).

This is the gospel by which ye are saved, “how that CHRIST DIED FOR OUR SINS according to the scriptures;  And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” (ICor.15:3,4).

If you will simply believe this wonderful good news, and trust Jesus Christ as your Saviour, God will save you from your sins and He will give you the “riches” of His grace.  And a Blessed Christmas will be yours indeed.  Won’t you do it today?

“BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND THOU SHALT BE SAVED, and thy house” (Acts 16:31).

Bethlehem and Calvary

by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

“Sweet Name come down from Heav’n above,
To win our heart’s deep tender love;
As Bethlehem and Calv’ry prove:
My Jesus.”

How true this old hymn is! Bethlehem and Calvary do indeed prove that the Lord Jesus Christ came from heaven to win us to himself.

St. Paul’s declaration that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (ITim.1:15) takes in both Bethlehem and Calvary. At Bethlehem Christ showed His love for man, not merely by coming to be with us, but by becoming one of us.

Luke, “the beloved physician,” wrote the famous “Gospel According to St. Luke” to show how truly man the Lord Jesus Christ was. Apart from sin, our Lord experienced all the emotions, the sorrows, the joys, the pains, the pleasures that we do. The Son of God actually became the Son of Man that the sons of men might become the sons of God.

But His life alone could not save us. His holiness would only expose our sin and condemn us. This is why the Apostle Paul declares that “Christ DIED for our sins” (ICor.15:3), and that “WE HAVE REDEMPTION THROUGH HIS BLOOD, THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS, ACCORDING TO THE RICHES OF HIS GRACE”(Eph.1:7).

Those who believe this and trust Christ as their personal Saviour rejoice in the truth of the above poem. Their hearts have been won to the Blessed One who came from heaven to Bethlehem and Calvary because HE loved them.

From Berean Bible Society
www.bereanbiblesociety.org

The Knowledge of His Will

A Study of Colossians 1:9

For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; (Colossians 1:9)

Paul’s first ministry for these saints is this one: he earnestly and sincerely prays for them.  This unceasing prayer truly helps to understand the imperative to “pray without ceasing”.  We never stop praying. The Apostle of Grace then lets them know the contents his prayer for them.  After hearing their love for him in the Spirit from Epaphras (Colossians 1:8), he began to pray without ceasing for them from the very day.  What great praise must have filled the heart of the jailed apostle—the ambassador in bonds!  But it did not end with praise, but with desire for their good and desire for their growth in the Lord. Continue reading “The Knowledge of His Will”

Understanding the Commissions: Part 3

Now we begin the third installment in this series on the commissions.  In the last two installments, we mainly studied the commission in the end of Matthew’s Gospel account.  This installment will mainly focus on the commission given at the end of Mark’s Gospel account:

Afterward He appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen Him after He was risen. And He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In My Name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. (Mark 16:14-18)

Continue reading “Understanding the Commissions: Part 3”

Thanksgiving-for the Fruit of the Gospel

A Study of Colossians 1:3-8

We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth: As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ; Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit. (Colossians 1:3-8)

Continue reading “Thanksgiving-for the Fruit of the Gospel”

Understanding the Commissions: Part 2

In the last study, we discussed this commission of our Lord to His apostles and this ending to Matthew’s gospel which does not reveal the ascension.  I stated that the reason I believe that the Holy Spirit left this important fact out was because of the emphasis in the Gospel According to Matthew of our God’s Christ reigning on the earth.  The passage reads as follows:

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)

Continue reading “Understanding the Commissions: Part 2”

Understanding the Commissions: Part 1

This is the first installment in a series discussing the commands in Scripture commonly known as The Great Commission.  I said this as “commonly known” because that phrase is not found in the Bible. It is not a wrong designation, for it is a very great commission indeed.  In this series, I am going to search the scriptures for understanding on this most important command to His Apostles, and work toward an understanding of this command and how it is related to us these nearly 2000 years later.  In this study, one thing I would ask of the reader, and that is to ponder this scripturally and not to react emotionally. Without any further delay, here is the Apostolic commission as recorded in Matthew:

Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw Him, they worshipped Him: but some doubted. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Matthew 28:16-20)

Continue reading “Understanding the Commissions: Part 1”