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COLOSSIANS CHAPTER 2

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1 For I want you to know how great a struggle I have on your behalf and for those who are at Laodicea, and for all those who have not personally seen my face,

 

Col 2,1-10

(138i) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Exhortation >> Exhorting the people to work together

Col 2,1-4

(79l) Thy kingdom come >> Know the word as a sword in spiritual warfare >> To defend yourself from religion – Paul says these things that no one would delude them with persuasive argument. He doesn’t want God's people to be deceived, for there are those out there who want to deceive us by preaching a different gospel other than the one Paul preached. Each one of them has his own rendition of the truth, but are all after one thing – money. They may be motivated by narcissistic tendencies and fame, but if it didn’t pay they wouldn’t be doing it, even if it bolstered their gigantic egos.

(80e) Thy kingdom come >> Know the word to learn the ways of God >> Leading to Jesus – “Assurance” is very important; its synonym is Confidence. It is important to know the word, but it is more important to be confident in our knowledge of Him. We can know the Scriptures; we can even memorize them and recite them yet without being confident in them. Confidence in the Scriptures is knowing our hope will one day materialize. The reason we need confidence is that we are living in a natural world, whereas God is speaking to us about a spiritual realm, and the two of them cannot be more opposite from each other. We see no indication of God in this world from day to day; He seems to be absent from His creation, and He commands us to live and walk by faith in Him. He wants us to know for sure that everything He said was true and has its fulfillment. We struggle and run into hard times; we must be confident in our faith when our circumstances deny the love of Christ. All creation testifies to the glory of God, yet the world gives no evidence of Him. Wickedness happens and evil prevails; people speak to us about their philosophies that mock and ridicule God, being their reasons they don’t believe in Him. This makes us feel uneasy about our faith, and we need to be confident during those times. We have to know that what we believe is true and that the evidence is stacked on our side and against them. We call the universe as proof of God’s existence, but their world calls the creation as inadmissible evidence.

(83c) Thy kingdom come >> Results of prayer >> Prayer unites the body

(89g) Thy kingdom come >> Fear of God is the beginning of wisdom >> Wisdom is the key that unlocks the mysteries of God – Through Christ we have access to all the wisdom of Solomon and of the old and new covenants. The boundless wisdom of Christ is the summation of all things. It is up to us how much of Him we want to drink into ourselves in our dedication to the truth. This passage encapsulates everything Paul said throughout his epistles, framing his vision as a whole for the body of Christ, as he reiterated in so many ways, “Let all things be done for edification” (1Cor 14-26). He wanted the people of God to always be together improving each other.

(108hb) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelation of Jesus Christ >> Spiritual revelation >> Revelation of His love

(122e) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Confidence in yourself as you die to sin >> Confident in your salvation – In the process of knitting our hearts together in love He wants us to attain to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding. He wants us to be confident in our salvation. If we search for assurance, our quest will result in the true knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ Himself. As we pursue these things, we will become doctrinally and theologically sound in the faith. People often lack assurance of their salvation, yet many never do anything about it. They might go to church, but they're not students of God’s word or disciples of prayer. However, once we add obedience, these things define us as Christians, and if we diligently walk in them, our assurance will be complete. We know there is false knowledge; for this reason there are many religions and denominations in the world. Nearly every denomination has a piece of the truth, but they also participate in falsehood, otherwise they would not have distinguished themselves from Christianity and preferred instead to be recognized as Lutherans or Methodists or Episcopalians, etc. There is no denomination that is right, and there are few that are absolutely wrong. If you are seeking the truth, you must look to God and to the Scriptures and to those you trust to tell you the truth. If you seek the truth, you will find it, but the one who halfheartedly searches for God will find a rendition of god. For the God of heaven we must diligently apply our whole hearts before we can be confident in our salvation, because we know this is what He requires of us, and if we don’t give it to Him, we will always be skeptical, not of God, but of our own faith.

(249g) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Wealth >> True perception of wealth >> The infinite and eternal wealth of God >> God’s perception of wealth >> Our hope in this life -- These verses go with verses 8-10

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Col 2,1-3

(109f) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelation of God >> Revelation of God's word is true knowledge – Most Christians in America have a Bible but are mostly unwilling to read it, and some even complain that knowing the Bible is not all that important; then there are Christians in other countries who don’t have a Bible, and if they had one, they would be reading it. Their opportunities to learn about God are limited, yet their hearts are often more willing than most Christians in the states. The knowledge of God is invaluable, according to Solomon who said it better than anyone, “How blessed is the man who finds wisdom and the man who gains understanding. For her profit is better than the profit of silver and her gain better than fine gold” (Proverbs 3-13,14). Peter used the term “true knowledge” in 2Pet 1-3, which is highly significant because there is some knowledge about God that isn’t true, suggesting that true knowledge comes from the Spirit. Every word in the Bible is true; we can read it and memorize it, but the true knowledge of God is that which God imparts through His Spirit, so we can understand His word on a spiritual level instead of just cognitively agreeing with it. The definition of “true knowledge” is having come to an understanding of the truth through a revelation of Jesus Christ.

(129f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> love perfects unity >> Love is the mortar between the blocks – Paul is talking about unity when he conveys his desire for the hearts of God’s children to be knit together in love. He struggled with the Church’s disunity. If it bothered Paul, think how it must bother God that His people refuse to walk in one accord. People socialize in church and call it unity. When you look at the Bible’s version of unity, it goes far deeper than our church functions.

Col 2-1,2

(74h) Thy kingdom come >> Heart is central value system >> The heart is what drives man’s desire

(139b) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Encouragement >> The adversity of our brothers encourages us

(188d) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Suffering >> Growing pains >> Growing inwardly

(247d) Priorities >> God’s priorities >> God’s interests >> Concern >> Caring about the body of Christ

Col 2-1

(70d) Spirit grieves over the flesh – Paul said that he struggles over those who have not personally seen his face; that would also include us in the 21st century. He spoke about suffering in the first chapter, and now he is picking up the subject again, only this time it has nothing to do with preaching the gospel but in regard to the Church that resulted from his preaching. To the degree that the Church did not grow but was disobedient to the will of God was the degree of Paul’s struggle. That is, the immaturity of the Church caused him tremendous inner pain, and Paul was a spokesman for Christ. Paul acted as the Lord’s proxy; he was a representative of Christ to the Church, so we could say that to the degree Paul struggled under the Church, Christ sufferers too. Christ suffers from our disobedience; it pains Him when He sees us sinning and refusing to repent and refusing to pursue our calling that He has prepared for us, and He reflects His suffering on us in the form of conviction. The conviction of the Holy Spirit is the same as grieving the Holy Spirit, God showing us how He feels when we sin. Most people in the Church live under a heavy conviction, and they think that it is all because of the sins they commit, but they are unaware of the righteousness they omit that is the cause of their sin, and this grieves the Holy Spirit. If we didn’t omit righteousness, we wouldn’t sin as much; instead we would be busy doing God’s will. “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop,” according to the true proverb. Paul said, “Whatever is not from faith is sin” (Rom 14-23), meaning that we are supposed to do everything from faith. This is the acid test of our works; if we cannot do them in faith, then we shouldn't do them at all.

(148d) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Evangelism >> Natural advantage as an evangelist regarding the flesh

(236a) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Invest in the kingdom >> All things are for your sake >> We are fighting for you >> Our suffering is for your sake

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

2-4 that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God's mystery, that is, Christ Himself, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument. 

 

Col 2,2-4

(231e) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> Revelation of Jesus is the mystery of the kingdom >> Jesus is the mystery of the kingdom – Paul said that God’s mystery is Christ, yet we don’t hear anything about a mystery shrouding the person of Jesus; instead, we hear His gospel in a straightforward manner with no misunderstandings, so what is this mystery? Our beliefs must transcend our own human ability to believe and rise to a level of faith that God has given us through His Spirit. The more confidence we have, the more Jesus comes into focus in our hearts, the more He becomes a reality in our lives. Knitting our hearts together through edification pertains to unity, and once we get to this point, we will have come to a place in our hearts where His wisdom lays before us like a great vista on a mountaintop. It is all laid before us at a glance and everything we can see we can have. God promised Abraham the land under his feet, saying, “I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God” (Genesis 17-8), but in the New Testament He promises that we don’t need to physically go there; if we can just see it with our eyes, we can have it, referring to visions and the ability to see into the Spirit. In Eph 1-18,19 it says, “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.” We walk up an arduous trail to a high mountain pass until we reach the vista, and then everything we see becomes our inheritance.

Col 2-2,3

(89a) Wisdom (Key verse)

(234d) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the glory of God >> Seeking the glory of the body of Christ – Paul was talking about unity, being “knit together in love.” Unity doesn’t happen over ice-cream socials or potlucks, but occurs on the basis of wisdom and knowledge that becomes available to us from God as we open our heart to Him and to each other, making sure that every aspect of our lives is for the purpose of worshipping God and caring for the saints. Doing these things, God will reveal Himself. The key word to this is “assurance”, which implies confidence, and confidence is a synonym for “faith”. As the body of Christ continues to walk in this way, our assurance will increase, but Paul couldn’t directly tell us about these things, for we must experience them for ourselves. We apply our knowledge to our faith toward God and our love for one another, and He gives the increase, transforming our human knowledge into true knowledge of the Spirit, causing a snowball effect of faithfulness and obedience. These things feed on each other, strengthening us to climb the ladder of spiritual maturity into the mysteries of Christ.

Col 2-2

(34f) Gift of God >> Believer owns everything >> True knowledge belongs to us – Our confidence grows in the word of God as it transforms from mere words on a page to true knowledge that God imparts in us by the Spirit. We need to remember that God performed many miracles through Paul in his ministry of evangelism, yet Paul never digressed telling us what God wants to do in the natural realm; instead, he stayed with what God wants to do for us in the Spirit. He wasn’t interested in what God could do for him in the natural realm, but was content with the spiritual ministry of Christ in his life. Any mechanism God would imbue in the natural realm couldn’t hold a candle to the ministry of Christ in his spirit. Everyone is looking for a manifestation of Christ, but any true believer in Jesus would not be impressed more than the things that God is doing in his spirit, because that is the center of his life. Even in heaven the work of God in the inner man will remain the most expedient of all. When the entire natural realm is transformed into God’s presence, these things will not mean much compared to the work that God is doing in our spirit, the things that God is creating in us even now.

Col 2-4

(7f) Responsibility >> Protecting the gospel >> Defending the truth – This verse goes with verse 8. The purpose of all this is so no one can talk us from our faith; no one can present a different gospel from what we already believe. Once we attain the true knowledge of God through the Spirit, nobody can lie to us, because we know the truth from God, and nobody can tell us anything beyond what the Spirit of God has said, because nobody is more persuasive than Him. There are some persuasive people, and they will try to lie to us, and they will attempt to talk us into their viewpoints in order to place us in bondage for the purpose of exploiting us, but the person who knows the truth from God will not listen to anything he says, because we have already been persuaded by the Spirit of Truth. There is no greater influence in our lives than the Spirit of God who dwells in us. Paul’s goal for the Colossians and for all the churches was to come to an understanding of God to the point that they could not be deceived, as he said in Eph 4,11-14.

(84a) Thy kingdom come >> Be on the alert >> Remain on duty >> Stay awake

(182i) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Being deceptive with people >> Distorted perception of others -- This verse goes with verse 8

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5-7 For even though I am absent in body, nevertheless I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good discipline and the stability of your faith in Christ. 6 Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, 7 having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.

 

Col 2,5-7

(92k) Thy kingdom come >> The narrow way connects you to God >> It solidifies your relationship with Him

(97i) Rooted Deeply (Key verse)

(97j) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> Rooted deeply >> Standing firm in the faith >> Immovable – The demonstration of the legitimacy of our faith is best described as being, “firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith.” Paul is not just talking about building up our minds in the realm of theology but about rooting our behavior in a lifestyle of godliness. If we spend our whole lives establishing our minds in the Scriptures but never establishing our behavior in the will of God, we’ve wasted our time. One of the evidences of investing our flesh in the Kingdom of God is the overflowing of gratitude. Grateful people are born of God. Being thankful is not actually listed as one of the fruits of the Spirit but is an attribute of godliness. Gratitude certifies that being rooted and grounded in the faith is in progress. Gratitude is a lifelong process, a natural offshoot of our relationship with Christ.

(105k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Led by the Spirit to the truth >> Spirit will lead you to Christ – This statement is very similar to the statement he made to the Galatians, “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit” (Gal 5-25). Generally, we are gung-ho about living by the Spirit, but we are not so crazy about walking by the Spirit. Walking by the Spirit has replaced obeying the law, so if we refuse to walk by the Spirit, it is tantamount to rejecting the Law of Moses, except that the consequences are more severe according to Heb 12-25. If we are Christians, then we should pattern our lives after the one who saved us. If we have entered into so great a salvation, then we should live by it. If we have invested our hearts into the Kingdom of God, then we should invest our flesh too. If our salvation does not manifest in the natural realm, then God is unwilling to acknowledge our faith. James said, “You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.” This kind of faith does not save us. Knowing that God is judge of all the earth does not protect us from His judgment. A saving knowledge of Jesus Christ absolutely must manifest in the natural realm before it becomes real, otherwise our faith is illegitimate.

(139g) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> We build the temple through Christ

Col 2-5 

(6i) Responsibility >> Spiritual >> Ministering to people by being in the Spirit – When Paul talks about being absent in the body but present in spirit, it is highly unlikely that he meant this literally. His spirit did not wander the earth seeing how the churches are doing. It is more likely that God told Paul about the churches. God spoke to him about a lot of things, and of course he gave opportunity for God to often speak to him through prayer. He spent many hours in prayer and in the Scriptures. God often ministered to Paul by telling him what the saints were doing and how they were behaving in order that Paul might pray for them. When Paul came and rebuked them, they must have wondered how he knew. It would actually be better for the Colossians if he knew these things on his own rather than God telling him, but of course we know that God knows everything, yet we tend to leave that in the theoretical realm, and we don’t think about it quite seriously enough. It was good for them to have a watchdog like Paul along with the other apostles, in that it gave them a sense of security that people were watching over them, but to have people watching over their souls who were not even present must have been a little spooky. They must have thought they had better mind their manners lest Paul catch wind of it and expose the things they have done in front of everybody. This was a deterrent against sin and it was a motivator to ratchet up their devotion to Christ and make their faithfulness complete and keep their religiosity at bay.

(69c) Authority >> Discernment >> Feeling the body’s infirmities

(125h) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Joy >> Joy is the result of obedience

(240f) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Natural disadvantage >> Natural disadvantage of the flesh >> Limitations of the flesh

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Col 2-6,7

(95h) Thy kingdom come >> Attitude >> Having an obedient attitude >> Ready to do God’s will – These are the things we know God will lead us to do. He is leading us to be firmly rooted and grounded in the faith as the central goal of Christianity. To the degree that we are being established in the faith is the degree that we are listening to the Holy Spirit, because we know that is where He is leading us. Just like a math problem, we go from what we know to what we don’t know, like finding ourselves on a map; once we determine where we are, we are no longer lost and can figure out which way to go. From there God will lead us in His specific direction that is different for each person, but our foundation is the same.

(247b) Priorities >> God’s priorities >> God’s interests >> God is interested in His people >> God is interested in our spiritual health – We need to ask God where He is taking us. The first step is uncovering our gift. Whatever comes easiest is your strength. Therefore, pursue it with all your heart and with one question in mind, how you can use it to build up the body of Christ. Bathe your gift in the word of God and prayer, two of the three spiritual tools at our disposal; the third is obedience. Our goal as Christians is to find God’s will regarding how He wants us to apply these three attributes to glorify Him, to benefit ourselves and to encourage the saints. While you’re at it throw in gratitude. To have a thankful heart is a good substitute for being a grump. A grateful heart says to God that you already know you will receive whatever it is you are asking from Him. This is why gratitude is always part of our relationship with God and man. Gratitude bypasses hope and says, ‘I have already received God’s blessing.’

Col 2-6

(209a) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Personal relationship >> Being married to God >> We go where He goes – Paul tells us to walk in the same way that we received Jesus. How did we receive Him; wasn’t it through obedience? Didn’t we hear the voice of the Holy Spirit and obey Him? Didn’t we promise to do whatever He says for the rest of our natural lives in exchange for eternal life? Now we are the children of God because we made a life commitment to the Holy Spirit; this is a solid definition of what it means to be a Christian. Salvation is just like marriage. The Holy Spirit comes alongside and requests each person to make this commitment. Those who respond Paul says that in the same way we received Jesus Christ, so walk in Him. Therefore, salvation is a continuous process of listening to the Holy Spirit and doing what He says.

(230b) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Partaking >> What we must do to partake of the kingdom >> Partaking requires our participation – This verse correlates with Gal 5-25, “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit,” for walking denotes participation. We partake of God’s life by living in the Spirit, and we participate in that realm by walking in the Spirit. If we do not walk in Him, then neither do we live in Him. A lot of people are only fooling themselves claiming that we are saved by grace through faith, not as a result of works lest anyone should boast, so we are free from all responsibility, as though our works were as filthy rags. Our works do not save us, but Paul said that if we have received Christ Jesus our Lord, then we should also walk in Him, according to 1Jn 2-6, “The one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”

Col 2-7

(82h) Thy kingdom come >> Prayer >> Thankfulness >> Giving thanks for His mercy

(239c) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Pursuing the knowledge of the kingdom >> Teachers >> Teachers "remind" their students >> Repeating instructions

 

8 See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.

 

Col 2,8-23

(117e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Let Jesus do the work >> Let Him work on you

Col 2,8-15

(29j) Gift of God >> God is on our side >> God identifies with us >> He is our advocate

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Col 2,8-10

(66f) Authority >> Jesus’ authority >> His position with the Father >> Jesus has authority over all things from the Father – Jesus is head over all rule and authority. He’s head over all mankind, head over all the world, even over Satan. He rules over all creation, though there are times when it seems He doesn’t. He allows things to happen, choosing to remain silent, and the abuse continues, one man upon another. How is it that Jesus Christ is head of all rule and authority when He allows such atrocities to continue? He has His reasons. First, God respects the right he gave us to exercise our own will apparently more than we respect our own sovereign will. We think God should come and fix all the problems that we have caused. Second, our problems lead us to trust in Him all the more to help us out of our problems, so He is the beneficiary of our problems in that God is glorified by our faith in Him. The more problems we have, the more faith we exhibit, the more He is glorified. For Him to come and fix everything would work to His disadvantage. Since God is head over all rule and authority, he will decide what He wants to do, and He decides to let things fall as they may. He decides to let man do what He wants. He’s not about to repent from giving us a will; to do that would decrease our humanity, and not only does He know that, but we would know it too, and we would rail against God all the more if He came down here and tried to fix anything. We would scream and holler that He is violating our will. So, He leaves us alone, because it is really the only thing He can do, being the lesser evil we attribute to Him that He does nothing. Faith is the great equalizer. Those who have easy lives will have their reward in full, but those who have to struggle in faith will be eternally rewarded in heaven. So, it all works out one way or the other, nullifying the need for Him to come down here to fix anything.

(163b) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Being slaves of men >> Prison

(164g) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> The world system >> Satan’s system of authority >> His elementary principles of the world -- These verses go with verses 20-23. There is no such thing as a complicated deception. If Paul called it the elementary principles of the world and you get fooled into believing a lie about God, then it’s your own fault. None of these schemes that people use are very technical, yet they work very well, based on the evidence that people have been using Jesus to deceive the masses since He shed His blood for the sake of the truth.

(180b) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves >> Wolves lead people into a cult >> Wolves bypass the cross

(212d) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> He is the creator >> Evolution (Defaming God) >> The philosophy of evolution

(249g) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Wealth >> True perception of wealth >> The infinite and eternal wealth of God >> God’s perception of wealth >> Our hope in this life -- These verses go with verses 1-4. If a person wants to pastor a church, he must first go to Seminary School and get a four-year degree in theology (philosophy about God), the very thing that Paul warned us would lead to empty deception. This is not how the Church started. Peter didn’t have a degree in theology or was educated at all, nor did any of Jesus’ disciples. In fact, Jesus made sure of it, because He didn’t want people thinking we needed an education in order to be a leader of His Church, but in today’s apostasy we now say that they must have a degree in theology before we can pastor a church. This just adds to the deadness of religion. So, what is the opposite of these things? Paul continued saying, “In Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority.” Jesus should be head of His Church and not some guru. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have shepherds in our churches, but the way things are established, pastors are about the only people who can minister the word of God in the Church, and this is the problem that Paul was addressing. If Jesus is head of the Church, then people are the members of His body and therefore should be working in the body to fulfill their ministries, helping to promote the Kingdom of God in the world. Instead, people come to church, find their seats, stand up on cue, sing songs, give their money, hear a sermon and go home, and they have no ministry in this, except to be counted. They count the numbers on the dollar bills and they count the heads of the people in attendance; religion’s significance is reduced to mere numbers. The pastor says that the Church is nothing without the people, yet he is willing to sacrifice their ministries in order to protect his own; religion’s objective is to preserve its own existence. When we put it into words, the condition of Christianity is stark.

(253a) Trinity >> Relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Father >> Jesus has all the external qualities of the Father >> Son has equal authority with the Father – This is Paul’s explanation regarding why you shouldn’t be deceived, similar to what Jesus said regarding the end times when He said in Matt 24-26,27, “So if anyone tells you, `There he is, out in the desert,' do not go out; or, `Here he is, in the inner rooms,' do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” His point was that when His moment comes it will be perfectly obvious to all, and my point is, if you don't believe that Jesus is the fullness of deity dwelling in a physical human body, then I say Jesus is so big that if you miss Him, it is your own fault, because the truth is obvious after Paul makes such a clear statement about His identity with the Father. Jesus didn’t possess a mere portion of God’s deity; He was the exact representation of the Father (Heb 1-3), and this is what outlines the parameters of the truth. Jesus is like the universe, if you settle on anything less than the infinite you will not understand galaxies. People have believed the earth was incased in a tent and that the stars were holes in the canvas. If you believe Jesus is less than God, you might as well believe you live under a tarp.

Col 2-8

(5c) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Disciples finish the course – This verse goes with verse 16. Verses 8,16 and 18 are a progression of distractions that people will try to pull on those of us who believe. Verse 8 addresses a philosophy that tries to do away with God's existence. The pseudo-philosophy of evolution is basically a religion that strives to explain the universe as it were absent of a creator. The bottom line when it comes to the truth of the gospel is this, God is the creator of the universe. No one can take that away from us. Only a fool would question God’s existence. Most people will not go so far as to question God’s existence, because they know it is useless. Instead, they will try to talk us out of the gospel of God’s grace in Christ Jesus, calling it a fairytale, complaining that God cannot love us based on all the evil that is in the world. The fact is, God exists, and by that it is irrelevant if Jesus is a fairytale, because God isn’t, and if we think so highly of God as to believe that He would send His only Son to save us from our sins, then God would respect us just for that. The truth is, nobody has a point against the gospel of Christ and nobody has an argument against God, and Jesus Christ is so well documented in the Old Testament that it is virtually impossible for the gospel of Christ to be false. Had the writers of God’s word made up the story of the Bible, the Jewish people of Israel, why would they have put themselves in such a negative light? Nobody would have done that. If a person or a people determined to make up a lie of this caliber, they would be psychopaths, and all psychopaths are narcissistic, and all narcissists try to portray themselves in the best possible light. Therefore, it is impossible for Israel to have made up the story of the Bible; hence, the gospel of Jesus Christ is true, and we who believe in Him have nothing to fear. No one’s petty distractions should ever bother us.

(7f) Responsibility >> Protecting the gospel >> Defending the truth – This verse goes with verse 16

(161k) Works of the devil >> Essential characteristics >> Satan’s attitude determines our direction >> Carried Away >> Carried away by religion -- This verse goes with verses 20-23. We are not to put our light under a basket but on the table for all to see, but the very expression of our faith becomes our religion, so it seems we have no choice but to have a religion. Some would say that the one true religion is Christianity, but the Bible doesn’t teach that our faith has anything to do with religion; in fact, Paul sternly warned us about this. James said, “Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world” (Jm 1-27). The word “religion” was used only five times in the New Testament (NASB), and Jm 1-27 was the only instance it was used in a positive context, showing what little emphasis religion has in the Bible, yet people equate religion with Christianity. How is the Church supposed to avoid religion? The biblical definition of a church refers to God’s people, but man’s definition of church refers to the building and to the procedures and liturgy performed in the Sunday service. Paul warned us not to allow our faith to become religious. Two words are synonymous with religion: “philosophy” and “empty deception”. Some people would say that the definition of Theology is defined as “properly interpreting the Bible”, but its literal definition is “philosophy about God”. We don't want to be philosophers, so we call it theology instead, yet we are just philosophizing about God, and Paul said that such things end in empty deception. This means that the less we interpret the Bible, the better. In fact, the Bible requires little interpretation; it speaks for itself to those who know God, but to those who refuse to know God it doesn’t speak to them.

(162i) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Being slaves of men >> Bad company >> Bad company will entangle you in their bondage – Whenever someone makes up a lie about God, they always make it less than the truth. They may promise you big things, worldly things usually involving money, things they want from you. For example, they may promise you prosperity, when in fact they just want you to tithe more so they can become wealthy through you. Even if you don’t prosper, you should give as though you were wealthy as a way of paying it forward. They would say to you, ‘Give me your money because you should be prospering according to my gospel, and if you’re not, then it’s not my fault and I should not be penalized for your disobedience.’ This is just cruel theology. Whenever a ministry sets its sites on money as a prime motivator, regardless of the cause, by design it always aims lower than the truth and hurts people in the process. Contrary to popular belief, God’s main interest in your life is not how much money you have, though it might be the main interest of cult leaders. God’s interests are in spiritual things, which pertain to faith and love. No cult leader has ever tried to fool people focusing on these things.

(167i) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil (Conspiracy) >> Carnality/Secularism (mindset of the world) >> The carnal mind does not receive the things of God >> It rejects God -- This verse goes with verses 16-23

(178d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Presumption (Hinduism) >> Presuming the facts about the circumstances >> Philosophy

(182i) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Being deceptive with people >> Distorted perception of others -- This verse goes with verse 4

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

9&10 For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, 10 and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority;

 

Col 2,9-15

(135m) Temple >> Your spirit is the temple of God >> The body of Christ >> Similarity in the body >> The things we have in common >> Common salvation – All the children of God have the Holy Spirit in common as it says in Eph 4-5, and also in 1Cor 6-17, “The one who joins Himself to the Lord is one Spirit with Him.”

(136g) Temple >> Your spirit is the temple of God >> The body of Christ >> Jesus’ spiritual body – Paul is talking about the law, which was hostile to us. The consequences of breaking the law followed us into death, but not the promises of keeping it. This is primarily why a new covenant was made through the blood of Christ. The old covenant law was given to Israel for the purpose of this life only, but the covenant of Abraham was eternal. Abraham was actually the beginning of the new covenant that we now believe through Christ. Jesus fulfilled the covenant that Abraham started, who walked with God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness, so that now in the new covenant what was added was the Spirit of faith. Our lives have been dedicated to fulfilling His plan and purpose. This is the faith of Abraham. He no doubt had plans of his own before God called him; he was already married; all of his family was there, and he was going to make a life for himself among his people. Then everything changed and Abraham started on a new journey to fulfill God’s purpose instead of his own. He instinctively knew that God’s plan would prove better than his own, especially since Sarah’s womb was barren. One of the benefits of obeying the voice of God was Isaac, whom he would not have had, had he ignored God. Abraham was more interested in integrating into God’s plan than he was in fulfilling his own; this is faith, and it should be the attitude of every Christian.

Col 2,9-12

(34a) Gift of God >> God’s generosity >> Believer owns everything >> Jesus belongs to us

(70j) Authority >> Believer’s authority >> We have been given authority over all creation >> We are the children of God >> We have the divine nature

Col 2-9,10

(61b) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> Complete—You are a whole member of the body / You have a part in the deity of Christ – We understand that Jesus is God in human flesh and that He is the fullness of deity in bodily form; who then is the “Body of Christ” (1Cor 10-16,17)? It refers to the Church. Collectively, we represent Jesus physically present on the earth, and as individuals we are members of His body. In eternity we will represent Christ to His creation, and since He is the fullness of deity, we collectively represent His deity in bodily form. We will never become deity, but we represent His deity as the image in a mirror represents the man. No matter how great we think of heaven, it will be far greater. That is more than what He has given to the angels. The Bible says that they are messengers and that they carry out commands; they perform duties and minister to the saints, but in no way does the Bible say that angels represent the deity of Christ. Our minds are not capable of comprehending just what God has given us. When He said, “Let Us make man in Our image” (Genesis 1-26), the image in a mirror is not the person himself but represents the person. We were made in the image of God; we represent Him in this life, only not His deity but His word. Our ministry in this life is to spread the word of God and evangelize the world and bring into the Kingdom of Heaven as many souls as possible, but a day is coming when this temporal creation has run its course that God will do away with the universe and create a new heaven and a new earth. Then God will make us collectively representatives of His deity as the body of Christ.

Col 2-9

(253eb) Trinity >> Relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Father >> Jesus has all the internal qualities of the Father >> Jesus is the Son of God >> Authority of the Son of God – How do the cults get over this statement, “all the fullness of deity dwells in bodily form”? When they try to deny that Jesus is God in human flesh, they redefine “deity” to mean something else, but when they talk about their god, they reinstate the significance of deity to mean the eternal God who created the universe. They treat the truth as though it were a virus, mutating it as needed to avoid being trapped in a debate.

Col 2,10-13

(228j) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> God works in the garden of your heart  – The word complete is an interesting one. We have heard it said that man consists of body, soul and spirit, but that is true only of Christians. It is not true for those who do not have the Spirit of God dwelling in them. Man obviously has a body and suspects he has a soul, but if he also had a spirit apart from the Spirit of God, how would he keep them separate? Which one is which? Isn’t the soul spiritual? Man has a body and a soul, and then a Spirit on the day he is born-again. God mixes with our spirit becoming one with His children, yet two separate entities. The end result is a new creation. When He mixes Himself with another person, another creation is generated.

Col 2-10

(44e) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Transformed >> Complete >> Completed by God – The uniqueness of the human soul depends on its underlying physical DNA and the inimitable manner in which one strand wraps around the other. So, who’s to say when the Spirit of God wraps around our soul to form a new creation, a similar process of conception is not at work? The DNA combines with itself in a myriad possibilities, suggesting that God binds Himself to His children in a way that is totally unique to each person. Rev 2:17 says, “To him who overcomes, I will give him… a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to him who receives it.” When we have the Spirit of God dwelling in us, this is the whole concept of being complete. This consequently means that unbelievers are incomplete; the whole world is incomplete. Each person has a body and a soul, but the unbeliever is lacking the better third of themselves, the Spirit of God, the key to their humanity. It is ironic that God provides for us last of all the most important part of our humanity, questioning one of many mysterious attributes of God – just how human is He? If we were created in His image, it only makes sense that He is largely human. Therefore, without God dwelling in us it is hard to say just how human are we? Without God it appears that people are merely animals with a soul, but when the Holy Spirit comes and provides His missing piece and completes us, this is when we become truly human.

(78h) Thy kingdom come >> Renewing your mind by the word of God >> Be of one mind, his mind -- This verse goes with verse 19

(137a) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Jesus is the foundation >> Jesus is head of the Church -- This verse goes with verses 18&19

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

11 and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ;

 

Col 2,11-15

(31k) Gift of God >> Gift of His grace >> Grace is the work of God – God promises to help us resolve sin in our lives as we work with Him as 2Cor 6-1 says, “And working together with Him, we also urge you not to receive the grace of God in vain.” The essence of the word “grace” means God working in you, a beautiful truth, but there is also an aspect working with God to instill His grace in our lives. Why then doesn’t God work His grace in every person? We know that most people in the world don’t believe in God; He only works in those who believe in Him, His children, and the rest He calls to faith and repentance, for He cannot give us what we don’t want. He wants us to exercise our will to obtain His heavenly possessions, requiring us to work with Him, having a common cause and being in agreement, yet grace is considered the work of God. What He calls us to do in receiving His grace acts as little more than our acceptance of His gifts as He personally instills His grace in us.

Col 2,11-13

(190i) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Circumcision >> Circumcision is a sign of obedience >> Obedience by the Spirit makes circumcision obsolete – Some of our worst addictions can only be removed through a vision of freedom, so if we find we are having a hard time overcoming our temptations, it is a sign we lack vision. That is not entirely our fault, because sometimes the Church doesn’t have a vision big enough to give us reason to seek freedom. How are we supposed to have a vision if the Church doesn’t have one? Are we expected to have a vision of serving God all by ourselves? People would call us Lone Rangers and want-to-be cult leaders. The Church needs a vision of obedience, knowing that the rewards are far greater than our sacrifices. Having a vision of obedience makes the Christian walk so much easier; in fact, it makes the Christian walk possible. Without vision (faith) it is impossible (Heb 11-6). If you have faith, then tell me your vision. 

Col 2-11,12

(38e) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death (Satan) >> Resurrection anointing

(103f) Thy kingdom come >> Purifying process >> Spirit like water >> Spirit cleanses you from the desire to sin – This may be the most concise passage in the Bible about the gift of repentance: He empowers us to resist temptation. Of course in this life there will always be temptation, so God distances us from them, weakening their charms, so we can more readily resist them. They are still in walking distance; we can always revisit them, but to move in their direction would strengthen them. We would be wise to stay away and walk in our freedom instead. The circumcision of Christ made without hands means it is a divine act of God. The doctor performs circumcision on the eight-day old male child; it is associated with a little pain that quickly subsides, but to the adult male or female, Christ Himself spiritually performs the circumcision to the heart. Circumcision pertains to the removal of the flesh surrounding the penis, represented by the foreskin that is removed and disposed, suggesting that within the Christian there occurs a change of heart, and along with that a supernatural ability to overcome sin. In other words, circumcision and subsequent baptism represent a divine act of God cleansing us from the desire to sin and endowing us with an ability to conquer our temptations. However, if we keep falling to our temptations without even putting up a fight, God will think we really don’t value our freedom in Christ; then He might not help us, and we will have to fight them by our human resolve when it is not even in our heart to do so.

(113k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> The anointing >> Resurrection power

(134h) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Body of sin >> Dying to the sinful nature

(228i) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> God works in the new creation – According to this passage regarding the symbolism of circumcision and baptism, they pertain to the removal of sin, for being raised with Him is a work performed without hands, and Jesus is the Great High Priest who meets us in the water and leads us under the surface where death occurs. He holds us there long enough for us to realize what this means, and then leads us back to the surface that we might breathe the air of a new life that is freed from sin; however, in this life we will struggle with sin to the day of our natural death. These symbols represent God’s power to help us live victoriously over sin. There are two aspects of God’s grace: the overcoming of temptation and the forgiveness of sin when we fall. These two are the work of God, and our only job is to work with Him. Before we sin we try to make sure it doesn’t happen in the first place, but we are fallible creatures; we do things that are against our own will and conscience. When we sin we go to Him and repent, and He is faithful and righteous to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1Jn 1-9).

(229a) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Kingdom grows by itself >> Growing In Numbers Corresponds With Spiritual Growth >> Kingdom slowly spreads and overtakes darkness

Col 2-11

(118l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Spirit delivers you from the desire to sin – Paul says that, though we still live in the body, we should stay separate from our sinful flesh; that is, we should not allow our sin nature to dictate how we should live, and circumcision symbolizes this. The procedure of circumcision is usually performed on infants, on the eighth day of the child’s life when blood coagulation is at its peak. Its purpose is to remove the unneeded flesh that surrounds the penis. Since it is performed mainly on infants, the procedure performs no spiritual function other than the illustration it provides. This removal of foreskin in fact illustrates the removal of sinful works of the flesh, and notice that the ceremony involves the penis, suggesting that most if not all sin revolves around this one sex organ. God does not commanding us to remove our own foreskins, but someone else does this for us, the doctor performing the procedure, but in this case God is the doctor. The procedure is done on infants, suggesting that many of our addictions are resolved on the day of our conversion. For example, I quit smoking the day I got saved and was never tempted again to smoke. God automatically delivers us from many of our addictions and requires us to maintain the freedom of Christ. Later, if we decide to pick up our old habits, we should not expect God to fix us like He did when we first got saved. God cannot re-circumcise us; that was a onetime event. If we want to be free from our old habits, we will have to work with God in a maturing process to receive His grace based on our relationship with Him. That doesn’t mean we are on our own. We have the tools set before us. We have the word of God and prayer and the Holy Spirit to help us incorporate obedience, and to separate ourselves from our nasty habits.

(140e) Temple >> Temple made without hands >> Hiding place >> The entrance exam

(190d) Circumcision (Key verse) – The message of circumcision is a refusal to worship the idol of pleasure. Remember what Jesus said in Mat 5-30, "If your right hand makes you stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to go into hell." The same can be said for the penis, and ceremony of circumcision makes that point. Both Circumcision and Baptism are symbols that represent putting away the sinful ways of the flesh that we practiced prior to our spiritual enlightenment. Notice that in Circumcision, after we have finished the procedure of removing the foreskin, which represents removing the sinful deeds of the flesh from our old way of life, the ceremony is over, but in Baptism, after being immersed in water, which represents death to the sinful nature, we return from the dead in newness of life, being made in the image of God. This difference from Circumcision signifies the new covenant's advantage over the old.

(240g) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Natural disadvantage >> Natural disadvantage of the flesh >> The sinful flesh

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

12&13 having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. 13 When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions,

 

Col 2,12-15

(205i) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the work of God – Most people believe in God, but most people are not going to heaven, according to Jesus own words, “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Mat 7-13,14). Many people believe a lot of strange things about God, but their beliefs don’t get them any closer to God than the person who thinks he should sacrifice his children to a deity. In contrast, God imparts His faith in us, which is equivalent to the Holy Spirit, who leads us into all the truth. The concept of faith is the very basis of Christianity. It is something that the vast majority of people in the Church don’t understand, and for that reason it is questionable just how many people in the Church are actually saved. If they don't understand the concept of faith, how could they be saved? Most people define faith as believing a set of doctrines, but that refers to believing; we are talking about “faith”. Most people equate believing with faith; they think it is the same, but it’s not. Webster’s Dictionary might equate them as synonyms, but Webster’s Dictionary is not trying to interpret Scripture. When we look carefully at the Scriptures, usually whenever the Bible talks about believing, we can replace it with the word “obedience”. So in that sense, people who believe in God obey Him. Faith is something different; it is a substance, according to Heb 11-1 (KJV). God gives us faith when we believe in Him; therefore, it is a heavenly substance, which is quite different from believing. Our beliefs are based on human will, whereas faith is from God and always believes the truth. The reason belief and “faith” are synonymous is that we use our human will to believe in God, which communicates to Him that we desire a lifelong commitment. Then He imparts His faith into us, which is our salvation.

Col 2-12,13

(191ba) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Baptism >> Baptism symbolizes death, burial and resurrection >> Baptism is a sign of faith – Paul talks about baptism as though he switched subjects, but he didn’t. Circumcision is a sign of deliverance from sexual sins, while baptism is a sign of deliverance from sin in general. In the same way that tossing a small piece of flesh in the bucket cut from the penis is indicative to freedom, so baptism also refers to freedom in the removal of the flesh, only in this case the whole body dies. Baptism illustrates that we have been buried with Him, “in which [we] were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God who raised Christ from the dead.” When a person is baptized, it symbolizes drowning. Our flesh has died, referring to our sinful nature, which has lost its power over us, as in the day we go to heaven, leaving our body behind. The ceremony of baptism symbolizes the Holy Spirit’s ability to override our temptations and fleshly compulsions such as anger and fear, and the whole spectrum of emotions that we find so difficult to contain. Baptism symbolizes our sin nature no longer being master over us, because it died, so when the preacher pulls us from the water, we are raised in newness of life. We rise from the water obviously still alive in our bodies, but the sin nature no longer has power over us as a result of the Spirit that God has given us. We are free to serve the Lord without hindrance. A person who believes that he has come to know God will be baptized. It is his belief in baptism that drives him to sacrifice his flesh by submerging under the water, drowning, so when he returns to the surface, God has raised him to newness of life. Although these things are symbolic, yet they will have their fulfillment at the First Resurrection when God raises the faithful and true from the dead to a new life in eternity, giving them a new body.

Col 2,13-15

(25k) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Dead in sin >> The human condition without Christ

(45e) Judgment >> God’s Judgment >> On believer’s sin >> Through His Son >> On the cross

(52b) Judgment >> Judging Church with world >> Law judges sin >> Law is hostile against us – The Father nailed the Law of Moses to the cross with Christ so that it can no longer condemn us. He called it a certificate of debt in the same way that we would be in debt to a lender. We are not in debt to a lender after we are no longer able to pay but the moment we sign on the dotted line. The day we can no longer pay is the day when the lender takes everything from us, kicks us to the curb and leaves us penniless. The law works the same way; it is cold and ruthless, representing death. The law is our enemy, though the world considers it an advocate, not understanding the ways of God, they use it to justify themselves, but any attempt to do so ends in condemnation. The law does not address our righteousness but our unrighteousness in that it promises no reward for keeping its ordinances, only consequences for breaking them. In terms of righteousness, the only thing that matters to God is whether we receive the blood sacrifice of Jesus’ body on the cross for the propitiation of our sins and make Him our savior and Lord. Nailing the law to the cross is the equivalent to nailing our sins to the cross, for when He removed the document that accuses us, He also removed the sin that condemns us.

Col 2-13

(120f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> God passes over our sins

(209a) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Personal relationship >> Being married to God >> We go where He goes – Paul is describing of the salvation experience. God saved us when we were spiritually dead in our transgressions, dead referring to the Holy Spirit being absent from our lives. While our flesh was still alive in sin, He made us alive in the Spirit by forgiving all our transgressions and taking up residence in our hearts, which meant that practicing sin in our flesh must die. He didn’t ask us to do something before He would save us. Instead, He saved us under our promise that we would repent. That is a marriage agreement; we take our vows when we get married; the vow says I promise to love you and take care of you and nurture you. These are all the things that God does for us, and our part of the marriage vow says we will always do what He says, which completes His nurturing hand when we repent of our addictions and practicing sin. It would be difficult if not impossible to see God’s nurturing hand if we continued in our hedonistic ways. The Holy Spirit now dwells in us and the marriage vow promises we will not drag Him through the mud by our sin. We make a promise to God that lasts throughout our lives; it is not a one-day or a one-month or a one-year trial run to see if we want the Christian life, but a life-long commitment. As children of God we make a promise that we will do everything in our power to make His enduring presence in our hearts as comfortable and pleasant as possible.

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

14 having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. 

 

Col 2,14-23

(119a) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Freedom from the law – God wants us free! He doesn’t want us falling under bondage to only certain foods or to various festivals, or to observing new moons. Paul is saying we are free in every respect; we are not obligated to any of these. The only obligation we have is to listen to the Holy Spirit and do what He says. We are not even obligated to the laws of the land or even the government. For instance, the Holy Spirit will tell you to pay your taxes, and if you don’t, the penalties and jail sentences the government will impose on you will hardly compare to the consequences of resisting the Holy Spirit. There are laws against prostitution, murder and fraud, but the Holy Spirit will never lead you to do those things, so who needs the law? There is no point in observing the laws or God, because the law has been written in our hearts (Heb 8,7-13). Neither the laws of God or of men were designed to lead us to God’s specific purpose and calling, whereas the Holy Spirit will do that. In the salvation experience God “canceled the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us,” referring to the law “which was hostile to us.” He symbolically nailed both our sin and the law to the cross, being essentially the same. Although the law is good, righteous and perfect, yet it has the effect of increasing the offense of our transgressions in that through the law we know our sin to be evil in the eyes of God. Although it was given to regulate our flesh, the law did little more than accentuate our sin, so if we know what displeases the Lord and we do it anyway, it makes our sin all the more sinful (Romans chapter seven). The law was never given to deliver us from sin, but as a measuring stick to confirm our conscience so there would be no question, showing us just how utterly sinful we are. The law is very effective in what it was designed to do in that nobody questions sin to be sinful because of the law. However, people throughout the generations have treated the law as though it were supposed to deliver them from sin, just the opposite of its intent. Jesus came to deliver us, not from the law, but from sin and the consequence of sin which is death, that the law maximized against us. Now that there is a mechanism for forgiveness in the cross, there is no sin, thus no need for law.

Col 2-14,15

(9a) Responsibility >> Prevent being blamed for something you did not do >> Prevent accusations – God used the cross to disarm the rulers and authorities, which is in reference to Satan and his hoard of demons, suggesting that demonic forces use the law to accuse us of sin. Satan, dubbed the accuser of the brethren, uses the law as a weapon against mankind more than its intended purpose as a gauge to determine the quality of human behavior. If that is what He does to Christians, then what does he do to the world? He utterly ravages people! Consider all the wars that have taken millions of lives over the centuries; what was the devil’s involvement? The motivating factor in almost every war is either a sense of guilt or its opposite, revenge. When men try to back out of doing wickedness, the devil is there to incite their hearts against one another. Demonic forces have been at the heart of all the oppression of wickedness that is the history of mankind since time began. When God gave the law to Moses, it was like putting a loaded gun in the hand of Satan. The first thing he did was point it at us and pulled the trigger, and we have no one to blame but ourselves, because we transgressed the law. When we sin, the devil uses the law in his accusations against us as proof that what he thinks of us is true, making us look worse than him, and we cannot defend ourselves because he is right in that we have committed sin, and when the devil is right, we are in big trouble, because we know that the devil is inherently wrong about everything.

(37a) Judgment >> The cross >> God judged the sin of the world through Christ

(38f) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> God judged the world, the flesh and the devil – The cross only benefits those who believe, even though Jesus suffered for everyone. This is the reason Jesus can judge the world, because He suffered for the sins of all. Once we receive Jesus as our Lord and savior, having nailed the document of our condemnation to His cross, He then turned to Satan and destroyed his power over us by taking possession of the keys of death and hell (Rev 1-18). Jesus triumphed over Satan on through the cross, not the resurrection, which stands as a manifestation of His victory over sin. Everything was accomplished on the cross; His willingness to suffer for us demonstrated His Father’s love for mankind. Satan was at a complete loss as what to do with Jesus, knowing that the only way to destroy Him was to successfully tempt Him to sin. After he failed to do this, all he knew was to kill Him, and so Satan was at the very center of Jesus going to the cross; he incited those against Him who would become His murderers, which was God’s plan from the beginning. God not only judged the sin of man on the cross so we could be free, He also sealed Satan’s fate as a constituent of eternal hellfire. His resurrection was the fulfillment of His victory over death. Without the resurrection the cross would be meaningless. The resurrection was a natural reaction to His death, since He was without sin as the Son of God. It was impossible, it says in Act 2-24, for death to hold Him in the grave. Satan was by no means sure that killing Jesus was going to fulfill his purpose, but he had no idea to what extent it would destroy him. It will haunt him for the rest of all eternity. The cross of Christ not only demonstrated the level of wickedness of man, it also demonstrated the wickedness of Satan, so God judged both man and demon on the cross, showing that there isn’t much difference between them.

(39i) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Jesus defeated Satan’s authority >> Jesus defeated Satan on the cross – Satan uses the law more than God ever did, as it says is verse 15, “And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” He disarmed the devil by taking away the law, which held the keys of death and Hades. It is not a coincidence that it talks about Satan in the same breath as the law in that guilt is one of the tricks of the devil, and he used the law to imprison people in their shame. The power of the cross is that instead of having a measuring stick to gauge sin, God now has a tool by which He can forgive sin, and in that forgiveness sin is eliminated, problem solved. The cross is not only God’s means of forgiving our sin, but He also used it to destroy Satan. When Jesus died, He died without sin, and since death came into the world through sin, He violated the law of sin, which requires death to be the consequence of sin (Rom 8,1-4). Therefore, Jesus’ sinless life delivered us from the power of death for all those who believe in Him for the forgiveness of sin. This victory over sin and death will be realized at various stages of our salvation, culminating at the invitation to spend eternity in heaven with God.

(41b) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Jesus is without sin >> He fulfilled the law 

(119l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of God is broken >> Curse of the law is broken

Col 2-14

(44a) Complete (Key verse)

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15 When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.

 

Col 2-15

(37b) Judgment >> The cross >> Father slays His son – When did Satan fall from heaven? Nobody really knows. It could have been millions of years or it could be only thousands. In many respects, Lucifer was like a brother to Jesus, and so we could almost say that they were like Cain and Abel; one became jealous and slew his brother. When the Father had disarmed the rulers and authorities (Satan and his minions), He made a public display of them having triumphed over them through Christ. Note that it was the Father who gained these victories on the cross against Satan. The war was between Satan and Christ, but the Father intervened and overcame the devil for Jesus’ sake and for the sake of those who would inherit eternal life. It was Satan who incited the people to crucify Jesus. Had Satan not agitated the crowds, His execution most likely would not have happened. Yes, man was involved and was ultimately responsible for crucifying the Son of God. Satan does not take responsibility for the things man does, but God does hold Satan accountable for the things he does, and since Satan played a vital role in crucifying Christ by coercing man to do it, He was therefore involved and was fiercely judged for it. Through Christ the Father stripped him of all his authority, consisting of the keys of death and hell (Rev 1-18).

(39h) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Victory >> Jesus never fails

(46j) Judgment >> Spiritual warfare >> Demons are subject to Christ – When Lucifer fell from heaven, rebellion was initially the crime he committed, but the cross demonstrated what that rebellion represented. The crucifixion of Christ was Satan's trial, which proved His intensions on the day of his fall from heaven when he made an attempt on God’s throne. The sentence is yet coming on the last day, after the Millennium; it says in Rev 20-10, “And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone.” Satan's hand in the crucifixion of Christ proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that he was not innocent of the desire to be like God, which was the desire to be like man, who is made in the image of God. After Satan’s fall from heaven, God made man to sit on His throne next to His Son. Lucifer literally took action against God’s throne before God evicted him from heaven (Rev 12,7-11). God caught Him red handed and ousted him from the celestial realm, divesting him of all his glory, and threw him to the earth, which would become his prison until his court hearing (the cross) and sentence was passed against him in Rev 20-10. Satan has the entire earth as his playground, but it is a dungeon to him compared to his previous glory of owning the entire universe. If we knew from what height he fell, we would understand why a tiny dot in the vastness of space feels like prison to him. God divested Satan of all his glory on the day of his fall, and now at the cross, on the day of his court hearing, God disarmed him, taking away his weaponry, which was power over death and hell (Rev 1-18).

(48d) Judgment >> God judges the world >> Satan is under God’s eternal judgment – Jesus addressed His entire creation when He died on the cross, transcending human sin and addressing also the sin of angels. Truth be known, there is a contest between God and the devil, a sort of private war, and we are stuck in the middle of it. It is too late for Satan and his minions to be redeemed, because they sinned in the presence of God, though God still wants to make a statement to him and about him that sin doesn’t pay. Part of God’s motive is an object lesson for us, but the other reason is to teach Satan a lesson. We might think God would not care what Satan thinks about Him, but He does care, for the express reason that He is God and has an interest in subjecting all aspects of his creation to Himself. It is not enough to grind Satan under His thumb by His immense power; He also wants to subdue Him by His authority, and His authority is in His truth, and His truth is in His righteousness. He wants to prove to Satan that righteousness triumphs over evil in order to subject Satan and the demons to His righteousness.

(143e) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Witnesses of Jesus >> The public >> Jesus ministered publicly – Jesus ministered for 3½ years, and when His ministry had ended, He gave up His life to fulfill His ministry, and the cross was another aspect of His public ministry. He was publicly crucified, not in a corner, not at night or in secret, but in broad daylight in the sight of all, and that is exactly how He ministered the gospel. Nothing had changed, for as He ministered the gospel so he offered His life a ransom for many. He freely gave up His life for the sake of those who would believe in Him for eternal life. What is more, the Father did the very thing to the devil. That is, as Jesus created a way for man to be saved, so He destroyed the power of Satan. Prior to the cross, Jesus cast out demons, and He verbally gave authority to his disciples to do the same, like a signed document authenticating their power, but after Jesus shed His blood on the cross, that authority was deposited in their spirits. It is now written on the tablets of our hearts by the finger of the indwelling Holy Spirit our authoring over all the power of the enemy, after Jesus defeated Satan on the cross.

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16&17 Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath day- 17 things which are a mere shadow of what is to come; but the substance belongs to Christ.

 

Col 2,16-23

(157h) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of being hell-bound >> Deceiving and being deceived >> Being deceived

(162f) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> A slave to unbelief >> Bondage to believing a lie

(167i) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil (Conspiracy) >> Carnality/Secularism (mindset of the world) >> The carnal mind does not receive the things of God >> It rejects God -- These verses go with verse 8

(173h) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Catholicism >> Unholy sacrifice >> Offering sacrifice without God’s approval >> Sacrifice against the way of God – Paul addresses the mentality of cults. People judge us based on what we eat and drink, whether we attend a festival or go to church, whether we celebrate a new moon (which some call witchcraft) or a Sabbath day. Paul says that the substance belongs to Christ, meaning He alone has power over temptation, but all these other things are irrelevant. We should not submit to their tyranny and guilt when they try to impose their masochistic ways on us. People will try to steal our reward of faithfulness. After we have walked for miles in the freedom of Christ they will try to snatch the reward from us, attempting to place us in bondage to their religion. The things that some people must endure in life require a tremendous amount of faith. They have no need for a religion with its customs and traditions that offer various forms of self-abasement and other forms of self-destructive behavior, as though there is not already enough pain and suffering in the world without looking for it. Their self-loathing eventually mutates into doctrines and religions, based around the idea that the more they hurt themselves the more spiritual they are, yet none of these things have any power to overcome temptation. It may temporarily distract them, perhaps in search of a sense of euphoria because it feels so good when they quit, yet the only result of their self-brutalization is more bondage.

(177d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> False doctrine >> Doctrines of the precepts of men – Paul asks us why we submit to decrees, “such as ‘do not handle, do not taste, do not touch,’” as though these things could cleanse us? To abstain from these things has no power to cleanse from unrighteousness, as Jesus put it, “teaching as doctrine the precepts of men” (Mat 15-9). We have no obligation to observe their teachings and traditions. Our obligation is completely toward the things of Christ: the word of God and prayer, the obedience of faith and unity of the body of Christ for the establishment of edification within the Church. On the one hand, the Holy Spirit will lead us away from sin, and He will do it by way of power; on the other hand, man’s wisdom cannot rise above “self-abasement and sever treatment of the body, [and is] of no value against fleshly indulgence.” If you don’t see God involved in the direction that other people are leading you, then go with the Holy Spirit and walk away from them, because they are trying to put you in bondage to their religion, so they can boast in your flesh. It gives them confidence when you believe what they believe. For them it’s a win/win situation, but for you it’s lose/lose. You strengthen their confidence in their false teachings, while you fall prey to their bondage. To practice a religion in a cult never produced any positive fruit. The only potential good is lesson learned not to do it again.

(179k) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves >> Wolves lead people into a cult >> Leading people through ignorance

(202b) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Running from God >> Running to your sinful nature >> Run from God by running to the world

Col 2,16-19

(1h) Responsibility >> Avoid offending God >> False burden >> Serving God in ignorance >> Not knowing His will – One of the many reasons for knowing the word of God is to avoid falling into the trap of those who would set them for us whether they do it intentionally or not. Those who are in bondage cannot help but lead you into their own bondage, since it is all they know. The knowledge of the word of God will lead you to people who share the same thoughts and feelings toward God, and has the concurrent affect of repelling others who would pull down your faith.

(18d) Sin >> False Judgment lacks evidence >> Undefined charges – There are lots of people who think they know what’s best for you, but they don’t. Those who tell us to do things contrary to the direction of the Holy Spirit would defraud you of God’s purpose and calling in your life. Trying to make people happy is not worth it, because there is no hope and there are no promises to doing the will of man. There are only two who know what is best for you: God and you. Tell someone the will of God for your life and most likely the person would find fault it, things you have heard God speak to your heart as how you should invest your life in the Kingdom of God. If they find fault with God’s will, what kind of advice do they have?

(154j) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Witness of the believer >> Conscience >> Having a good conscience >> God is my conscience – Let no one act as your conscience, for you have one conscience and Christ is head of it. There are things that some people think you should do, and they will try to make you feel guilty for not doing what they say, or perhaps God will call you to do something that others think you shouldn’t do, and they will try to make you feel stupid as you fulfill your purpose and calling from God (remember Noah). Paul said, “the substance belongs to Christ,” but the world has no substance. Therefore, to the degree that you allow people to be your conscience determines how much you have let go of your conscience in the Holy Spirit and are being led by man, who has no power or ability to lead anyone in right and positive ways, such as these extra curricular activities that Paul enumerates confirm. People who try to tell you how to live have no substance, and if you listen to them, neither will you. If you continue in the direction of the Holy Spirit, He will impart the spiritual substance of truth in the anointing to help you understand His will and to help others find faith in Jesus. God is the only one who knows His will for you, and for that reason Paul refused to let anyone but God be his conscience.

Col 2,16-18

(17g) Sin >> Judging in the flesh >> Evaluating circumstances with a carnal mind

Col 2-16,17

(110l) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Spirit and the word >> Spiritual substance and truth >> Spiritual substance follows the truth

(124l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Love is the action of God’s faith

Col 2-16

(5c) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Disciples finish the course – This verse goes with verse 18. There are people who use language against the knowledge of God that is meant to be discouraging, but these people have no power over those who refuse to move away from the hope of the gospel. There are circumstances that are themselves discouraging, but those who are deeply rooted in the word of God by the power of the Holy Spirit through prayer over many years do not flounder, because they know whom they have believed. Once we pass the test in verse 6 and call the atheist a fool, the next test depicts people who would act as our judge in relation to our faith, the way we conduct ourselves, who would tell us that there are certain things that are not allowed, referring to legalism. According to this tactic of distraction there are certain things we cannot do, certain foods we cannot eat, certain festivities we should not celebrate, etc.

(7f) Responsibility >> Protecting the gospel >> Defending the truth – This verse goes with verse 18.

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18&19 Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize by delighting in self-abasement and the worship of the angels, taking his stand on visions he has seen, inflated without cause by his fleshly mind, 19 and not holding fast to the head, from whom the entire body, being supplied and held together by the joints and ligaments, grows with a growth which is from God.

 

Col 2-18,19

(25i) Sin >> Poverty (Forms of fear) >> Thief >> Someone stealing from you – We stand to lose the experience of going and growing with God by listening to fraudulent people. There is a counterfeit spiritual material that people without substance offer, and these liars want to silence the true believers, because we are an affliction to their conscience. Instead of repenting of their sins and modeling after those who are faithful in Jesus, they seek to persuade us to side with them and give up the faith and truth we possess from God. These people who would deceive us delight in the lowest form of behavior as a basement is the lowest room of any house, and these people live there and want us to join them in their darkness and musty air. They worship angels in the absence of sunlight instead of God, referring to demons. They try to convince us to worship their idols, which is strictly forbidden in both the old and New Testaments. Their so-called angels give them visions, and because the people are fleshly-minded they inflate their visions, contributing to their own guilt, so that their sin is not just receiving a wrong vision from a foreign spirit, but expanding it by their wild imaginations. They do all these things for the simple reason that they don’t want to repent of their sin and unbelief.

(108d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith is the balance between freedom and law

(131ja) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> Many members but one body >> Many people but one person

(137a) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Jesus is the foundation >> Jesus is head of the Church -- These verses go with verse 10

(140g) Temple >> Temple made without hands >> Christ builds the temple from the bricks of the Church

(196c) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Idolatry >> Worshipping angels – Some people claim to have seen visions of angels, and now they assume to be authorities on the subject and want you to follow them. They want you to help them believe in their own ideas, and in the end when they get tired, they will give up their visions and leave you in the lurch and go on to something else, meanwhile you have wasted your life. This has happened countless times throughout church history. Paul says we are by no means obligated to them in that these very people fail to hold Jesus in their hearts, but cling to their visions instead, trying to put us in bondage to their religion. Paul instructs us to hold on to Jesus, “from whom the entire body, being supplied and held together by the joints and ligaments, grows with a growth which is from God.” It is better just to stay with Jesus.

Col 2-18

(5c) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Disciples finish the course – This verse goes with verses 20-23. If they cannot place us in bondage to legalism as in verse 16, they will attempt to defraud us by delighting in self-abasement, in other words masochism. The term self-abasement suggests behaviors that would be equivalent to locking yourself in a basement or dungeon, in other words self-induced bondage, as though God would be impressed in a display of so-called love directed at Him that would abuse our own bodies. To a sadist worshipper of deities ask him this question: ‘If you love God so much, then why don’t you just do what He says in His word?’ These people are not interested in obedience but in determining their own manner of worship. In other words, they are just as much in rebellion against God as the atheist and the legalist. Paul also accuses these people of worshipping angels, that is, idolatry. They would say that worshipping angels is to worship God, but this is not what the Bible says, exposing their rebellion and self-determinant manner of worship. Remember, Satan is an angel of God and tempted Jesus to worship him in the wilderness promising Him the world if He did, but Jesus retorted, “It is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and serve Him only.’” Rom 1-25 also says, “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever, Amen.” The worship of angels is just as great an insult as worshipping yourself. Trying to show God how much you love Him by abusing yourself is to treat the sacrifice of Jesus Christ with contempt, who was mercilessly whipped and nailed to a cross for us, so that we can serve God in freedom.

(7f) Responsibility >> Protecting the gospel >> Defending the truth – This verse goes with verse 4

(15k) Servant >> Angels >> Limitations of angels

(117i) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Eyes of your spirit >> Seeing visions

(160d) Works of the devil >> Satan’s attitude determines our direction >> Led by the devil to suppress the word of God >>  Suppressing the truth with false doctrine

(181i) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Self deception >> Imaginary perception of self >> Pretending to be someone you’re not – This is the world in a nutshell, not that they commit sin or practice it as a lifestyle, but they also revel in it. Repentance for people who worship demons is usually not in the cards for them, because to repent is to redefine their identity, and they like who the demons have made them. Repentance is their definition of blasphemy. Many people think it would be evil of God to require them to repent. Their thought process goes something like this: ‘If I must repent, it will radically change my behavior and my new behaviors will radically change my identity, since we are what we do, and that sounds like God does not like who I am now, which is evil of Him.’ On the contrary, they don't even know who they are! It is not evil for God to want to convert sinners. This is how far off-track these people have become to actually consider God evil because He commands them to repent.

(190d) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Masochism (Self-made martyr) >> Self-afflictions that are against the will of God -- This verse goes with verses 20-23

Col 2-19

(78h) Thy kingdom come >> Renewing your mind by the word of God >> Be of one mind, his mind -- This verse goes with verse 10

(229d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Kingdom grows by itself >> God causes the growth >> Kingdom grows according to the will of God – God has a different plan for us instead of listening to liars; He wants us to listen for the voice of His Holy Spirit and follow His lead throughout our lives. Paul commanded us to avoid those who would defraud us of our prize. This prize is the result of our obedience and faithfulness to Christ becoming a gift and an opportunity to play our part in causing the Church to grow with a growth which is from God. When we contribute our gift, God works through it, since the gift itself has come to us from heaven at great cost, being very valuable and therefore highly necessary for the Church’s growth. God is able to take our gift that we contribute and convert it into a work of God, just as it was a work of God in the individual who contributed it. This is the opposite of listening to deceivers with their message of deception. If we listen to them, we will do more to tear down the body of Christ than to help construct it.

(232j) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the kingdom >> Embrace (Jesus during the storm) >> God embraces us

(245a) Kingdom of God >> Spirit realm is imposed on the natural realm >> Literal manifestations >> Literal manifestation of Jesus Christ >> Manifesting the body of Christ

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20-23 If you have died with Christ to the elementary principles of the world, why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to decrees, such as, 21 "Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!" 22 (which all refer to things destined to perish with use )-in accordance with the commandments and teachings of men? 23 These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence.

 

Col 2,20-23

(1l) Responsibility >> Avoid offending God >> Carrying a false burden >> Taking on responsibilities that are not yours – This verse is most like Rom 14-14, which essentially states that you should not consider something to be unclean if it isn’t, because it only adds to your list of things that are off limits. God’s word has given us plenty to avoid without adding things to the list that will not make us better people if we refrain from them.

(5c) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Disciples finish the course – These verses go with verse 8. If they cannot talk us out of the existence of God, nor condemn us for our freedom in Christ, nor place us under bondage to idolatry or penance, then they will have run through their short list of devices to place us under bondage, and we who avoid them will have escaped their trap.

(161k) Works of the devil >> Essential characteristics >> Satan’s attitude determines our direction >> Carried Away >> Carried away by religion -- These verses go with verse 8

(164g) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> The world system >> Satan’s system of authority >> His elementary principles of the world -- These verses go with verses 8-10

(166c) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Wisdom of the world >> Man’s wisdom excuses his sinful nature >> Man’s wisdom wants to earn his ticket to heaven – On TV we have seen people from third-world countries performing rituals, parading down the street whipping their backs bloody. Whoever whipped himself the hardest and drew the most blood was the winner. Of course this was part of a religious ceremony, and so there was theology behind what they were doing, and they also got the prettiest girl in the tribe. In terms of their religion, they believed that bloodying themselves would bring them closer to God. There was obviously a matter of physical trauma that the person experienced, which no doubt put him in an unusual state of mind that one encounters during times of great distress. Those are the times we call on God, and we seem to feel His presence a little closer. During an actual distress God may be there to help, but when we create the distress artificially and mutilate our own bodies in hope of appealing to God, we do not impress Him. God would say to them what Jesus said to those who loved the approval of men, “Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full” (Mat 6-2). Beyond achieving the approval of men, their reward was to scar up their bodies and lose a pint of blood, but as for impressing God they fell short of it.

(170f) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Outward appearance >> Temporary >> Whatever is temporary will perish

(171g) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Outward appearance >> Decorating the outside to simulate the inside >> Playing the part to be accepted by God

(173f) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Catholicism >> Unholy sacrifice >> Offering sacrifice without God’s approval >> Sacrifice against the word of God – Jesus’ obedience meant far more to His Father than had Jesus come on His own initiative. Obedience means something to God; it means we have subjected our will to His authority. That matters to Him, because He is the final authority of all creation. For us to willingly submit to Him and do His will is better than giving Him something He doesn’t want. Our greatest gift to Him is to submit to His sovereignty, and our greatest showing of submission is to obey His specific will. Most Christians would say we have God’s favor because we believe in His Son. We believe in His sacrifice on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins, and by that we have His favor. It took only a couple moments to get saved, so now what do we do with the rest of our lives? We talk about being good and kind and bearing the fruit of the Spirit; this is the general will of God, but there is also His specific will that Jesus called the narrow way or the trail of good works. It seems people don’t believe the specific will of God even exists; it is not particularly preached, and there are few studies in the Scriptures about it.

(174d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Form of godliness >> Self righteousness >> Trying to please God by your own good works – How many times have we heard people say they wished they knew their calling from God? It seems the only person who knows his calling is the pastor, and not all of them should be in the pulpit. To discover our purpose and do it is the essence of manifesting Christianity in the world. Those who fit the description of this verse don’t know how to please God, and so they pick something as it were at random. What exactly is the will of God? Many Christians stumble through life not knowing their calling, and at the end of their lives when they meet God, He will tell them what He wanted them to do and then contrast that with what they did instead. What they did bore some fruit, but what God wanted them to do would have been far more fruitful and beneficial to far more people. It would have been a perfect fit for them. The Christian will say, ‘I asked you to reveal my calling and I never got an answer.’ What should we do when we get lost in the woods, continue aimlessly wandering getting more lost? No, the advice is to sit down. Don’t go anywhere until either someone finds us or until we correctly figure the direction we should go. Wandering in the woods is no different from picking up the nearest good work and passing it off as God’s specific will.

(185a) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Abusing the grace of God >> Dragging God’s Grace Through The Mud >> Operating His grace through religion

(190d) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Masochism (Self-made martyr) >> Self-afflictions that are against the will of God -- These verses go with verse 18

(195b) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Idolatry >> Serving two masters >> You can only serve one at a time

(197c) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Spiritual laziness >> Rebelling against where God wants you to go >> Refuse to walk in freedom

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Col 2-23

(159e) Works of the devil >> Essential characteristics >> Counterfeit >> Counterfeit godliness >> Counterfeit repentance – People throughout the ages have come to the misconception that destroying something valuable to them appeals to God, but He is not impressed with our self-imposed sacrifices for one crucial reason: we invented the idea on our own; that is, we did not offer the sacrifice through obedience. Offering sacrifice to God on our own volition is like giving a birthday present to someone without knowing what they wanted; the more money we spend, the more we expect them to like the gift, but money doesn’t guarantee happiness. More people like to give surprises than those who like to receive them. What we should have done was ask the person what he wanted for his birthday, so when we get it for him, we are sure to receive his approval. In the same way, if we ask God what He wants us to do and do it, we are are sure to receive His approval, as it is written, “To obey is better than sacrifice” (1Samuel 15-22).

(173e) Unholy Sacrifice (Key verse)

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