The Superiority of Walking with Christ – Colossians 2:6-7

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Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
September 12, 2010

The Superiority of Walking with Christ
Colossians 2:6-7

Introduction

Last week we looked at Paul’s desire and struggle on behalf of the Colossians. Though he had plenty of things to occupy his attention and he had not met them in person, he had a great concern for their spiritual welfare and therefore labored on their behalf both in prayer and in writing his letter to them. A mark of Christian maturity is becoming more concerned about others and less concerned about yourself (Philippians 2:3-4). Too often we are caught up in our own little world and lose the proper perspective. There is great joy and blessing in being aware of what God is doing in other places and being able to intercede for others though they may be far away.

Paul’s desire was to “present every man complete in Christ.” Spiritual maturity is the lifelong pursuit of every believer because that goal will not be fully accomplished until we are transformed and receive our glorified bodies. Until that happens, God continues His work in us to conform us to the image of His Son (Philippians 1:6; Romans 8:29) and a major way in which that occurs is the interaction we have with other members of the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:11-16).

Paul’s goal was to be used by God for that purpose.  Paul wrote in Colossians 2:1-5, “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, 2 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 in order that no one may delude you with persuasive argument. 5 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.

The false teachers in Colossae presented a clear and present danger. The church there had not fallen or stumbled yet, and Paul wanted to ensure that they would not do so. He sought to encourage their hearts with the truth of Jesus Christ which would bring about a unity based in Christian love. He wanted them to be fully confident in the true knowledge of Christ in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. If the Colossians were fully convinced of the sufficiency of Christ, they would not be lead astray by the false logic and persuasive speech of the false teachers. (See:  Paul’s Desire and Struggle)

This morning I want to continue on with verses 6 & 7 as Paul lays out the practical means of resisting the deceptions that we will face. Our protection will be in the superiority of walking in Christ.

6 As you therefore 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.

Receiving Christ

Paul begins with a reminder of what had already happened in their lives as the basis for his command for them to walk in Christ. They had received Christ in the past and therefore they should walk in Him in the present.

To receive something is to accept or take delivery of something that has been given or presented to you. The particular word used here (paralambavnw / paralambanô) is often used in relationship to accepting the instruction given by a teacher. From the comments Paul makes in Colossians 1:4-8 we know that the Colossians had been taught about Jesus by Epaphras and that they had responded well to the gospel. Their lives were marked by a practical demonstration of their faith in the Lord by their love for one another and all the saints.

Here in Colossians 2:6 Paul is specific that they had received Jesus, but the particular way in which Paul refers to Him is specific. In Greek it is the Christ, Jesus the Lord. Remember that the term Christ is simply the Greek word for Messiah, the anointed one. They had been instructed about Jesus and had come to believe that He is the promised Messiah who is the Lord. Being Messiah and Lord are very significant in Paul’s effort to counter the heretical teaching that was occurring in Colossae that was attacking Jesus’ deity.

As Messiah, Jesus is the fulfillment of the prophecies extending all the way back to Genesis and then the promises given to Moses and the prophets that followed over the centuries. Jesus is the seed of the woman that would crush the serpent’s head (Genesis 3:15 cf. Galatians 4:4). He fulfills all the genealogical requirements as the descendant of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah (Genesis 12:3; 17:19; 49:10 cf. Luke 3:34). He is the greater prophet spoken of by Moses (Deuteronomy 18:15 cf Acts 3:20). He is the greater son of David that will inherit David’s throne (2 Samuel 7 cf. Luke 1:32) who was born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2 cf. Luke 2:4-7) by a virgin (Isaiah 7:14 cf. Luke 1:26-31) at the right time (Daniel 9:25 cf. Luke 2:1, Galatians 4:4). He was preceded by a forerunner to prepare His way – John the Baptist (Isaiah 40:3-5; Malachi 3:1; 4:5 cf. Luke 3:3-6; 7:24). He spoke in parables as prophesied (Psalm 78:2-4 cf. Matthew 13:34-35). Jesus bound up the brokenhearted, healed the sick, cleansed the leper, gave sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf and even raised the dead to life (Isaiah 29:18; 35:5-6; cf. Matthew 11:5). He entered Jerusalem in triumph (Zechariah 9:9 cf. Mark 11:7-11), but was rejected by His own people (Isaiah 53:1, 3 cf. John 1:11; 12:37-38; Luke 23:18). He was betrayed by a close friend (Psalm 41:9 cf. Luke 22:47-48) for thirty pieces of sliver (Zechariah 11:12 cf. Matthew 26:15). He was accused by false witnesses (Psalm 35:11 cf. Mark 14:57-58), yet He was silent before them (Isaiah 53:7 cf. Mark 15:4). He was hated without reason (Psalm 35:19 cf. John 15:24-25), spat on and struck (Isaiah 50:6 cf. Matthew 26:67) and then crucified with robbers (Isaiah 53:12 cf. Mark 15:27-28). He was pierced through His hands and feet (Zechariah 12:10 cf. John 20:27) and His enemies reproached Him with sneering and mocking (Psalm 22:7-8; 69:9 cf. Romans 15:3; Luke 23:35), yet He prayed for them (Psalm 109:4 cf. Luke 23:34). He was forsaken by God (Psalm 22:1 cf. Matthew 27:46) as the vicarious sacrifice for sin (Isaiah 53:5 cf. Romans 5:6-8). The soldiers gambled for His clothes (Psalm 22:17-18 cf. Matthew 27:35) and pierced His side (Zechariah 12:10 cf. John 19:34), but did not break any of His bones (Psalm 34:20 cf. John 19:32). Jesus was buried with the rich (Isaiah 53:9 cf. Matthew 27:57-60), but was resurrected from the dead (Psalm 16:10; 49:15 cf. Mark 16:6-7) and has ascended to God’s right hand (Psalm 68:18 cf. Mark 16:19).

The identification of Jesus as the Christ, the promised Messiah, is not just a title but the designation of His identity as the Son of God (Psalm 2:7 cf. Matthew 3:17) and therefore the Lord. And Lord is not used here as a title of respect such as calling someone “sir,” but the designation of His position as master because He is deity. Paul’s designation of Jesus as the Christ, the promised Messiah, and Lord destroy all the arguments of the false teachers in trying to make Jesus something other or less than God Himself in human flesh.

The command that Paul gives at the end of the verse for them to walk in Christ is predicated that they have received Him, and the identity of whom they received is just as important as receiving Him. But what about receiving Christ? What exactly does that mean?

As I have already stated, the idea of receiving is to accept or take delivery of something that has been given or delivered to you. In the case of Jesus, it encompasses the idea of believing who He claims to be and accepting what He has done on our behalf including adoption into God’s family. John 1:12-13 states it this way, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, [even] to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” Receiving Him and believing Him are equated in this passage.

The vast majority of people will not accept Jesus according to His claims as the word that was in the beginning with God and was God that created all things and became flesh (John 1:1-3, 14). They will not recognize Him as the life and the light shining in the darkness because they turn away from the light to the darkness (John 1:4-5, 11, 3:19-20). If you want to receive Jesus, then you must turn to the light and believe in the name of the only begotten Son of God (John 3:18). However, to turn to the light, you must turn away from the darkness of sin. That is repentance, a change of mind resulting in a change of direction. You must believe Jesus’ claims about Himself and hold fast to His promises. Both of these elements are important. You must have the right Jesus and you must trust His promises.

The wrong Jesus, one that is someone other than the Jesus of Scriptures, cannot save you from your sins. The Jesus of the Mormons is a glorified, resurrected man who is the brother of Lucifer and not the only begotten Son of the eternal God. The Jesus of the Jehovah Witnesses is a lessor god and not the second person of the triune Godhead in human flesh. The Jesus of the various cults is also someone different from the Jesus of the Bible. The Jesus of the false teachers at Colossae was less than divine and not sufficient to fully redeem man from sin and reconcile him to God.

You must also trust His promises. To say you believe that Jesus is who He claims to be and then not trust His promises is contrary to the profession. Either Jesus can redeem man and forgive sins or He cannot. Either He is able to reconcile man to God or He cannot. Either He can keep His promise to bring us to heaven to be with Him forever or He cannot. We are either saved by God’s grace through faith in Him, or we are not. Attempts to secure our own salvation apart from or in addition to what He has done and what He has promised is self-righteousness and an insult to Him. Our righteous deeds are as filthy rags before our Holy God (Isaiah 64:6).

Paul explains our salvation this way in Titus 3:5-7, “He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 that being justified by His grace we might be made heirs according to [the] hope of eternal life,”

Have you received the Messiah, Jesus the Lord?

Walk in Christ

Paul commands the Colossians that because they have received Christ they were to walk in Him. Paul commonly uses the idea of walking as a metaphor for the manner in which a person is living. This would not only include the actions a person takes, but their attitudes and motivations as well. Paul uses the metaphor to both correct wrong practices and instruct in godliness as well as contrast righteousness and wickedness.

In 1 Corinthians 3:3 Paul chastens those who were responding to one another in jealousy and strife as carnal people who were “walking like mere men.” In Romans 14:15 he corrects who were using their freedom in Christ in selfishness as those who “are no longer walking according to love.” He reminded the Ephesians that they “formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:2). He did essentially the same thing in Colossians 3:5-7 listing out their former practices of immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire and greed “and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them.” He told the Ephesians to “walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind” (Ephesians 4:17). In sorrow he warned in Philippians 3:18 that “many walk . . . [as] enemies of the cross of Christ, 19 whose end is destruction, whose god is [their] appetite, and [whose] glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things.”

Paul uses the metaphor in an instructive and encouraging manner in many places too. In Romans 6:4 he describes our identification with Jesus in baptism and that “we also should walk in newness of life.” In 2 Corinthians 5:7 he calls on believers to “walk by faith, not by sight,” and in Galatians 5:25 to “walk by the Spirit.” Paul calls on believers to “walk in a manner worthy” of the Lord, of God, and of their calling (Colossians 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 2:12; Ephesians 4:4). In Ephesians 5:2 he commands us to “walk in love, just as Christ also loved you.” In Ephesians 2:10 he explains the practical result of being saved by grace, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Then in Philippians 3:17 he instructs, “Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us.” 1 Thessalonians 4:1 he exhorts them to “walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you may excel still more.

He also contrasts the two types of walks. In Romans 8:4 and Galatians 5:16 he contrasts walking in the spirit and walking according to the flesh. In 2 Corinthians 4:1 he characterizes his own manner of ministry and proclamation of the gospel as a manifestation of truth and “not walking in craftiness or adulterating the word of God.” In Ephesians 5:8 he reminds them, “for you were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord; walk as children of light.” And in Ephesians 5:15 he warns, “Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise.”

Because we have received Christ, we are to live in a manner that reflects the reality that Jesus is our Lord. Our actions, attitudes and motivations should be guided by the Spirit of God who indwells us so that people should be able to see Jesus living through us. Walking in Christ is the practical expression of being crucified with Christ and no longer living for yourself but Christ living through you (Galatians 2:20). It is not something that occurs instantly as much as we might like that, but something that begins at a point in time and improves the longer we do it. Walking in Christ is the result of being transformed by the renewing of our minds so that we are living and holy sacrifices acceptable to God (Romans 12:1-2). Walking in Christ is the logical and normal result of believing Jesus is the Messiah and receiving Him as your Lord and savior.

Paul uses four participles in verse 7 to explain four ways in which a proper walk with Christ will reveal itself.

Firmly Rooted (rJizovw rhizoô). This is a perfect passive participle indicating it is something that was done to us in the past that continues in the present. Someone that has believed Jesus is the Messiah and received Him as Lord will be firmly rooted. It is a matter of the nature of true faith as explained in Jesus’ parable of the sower in Matthew 13.

If you recall the parable, a sower spread his seed which fell on four types of soil with four very different results. Jesus explained the parable to His disciples telling them that the seed was the proclamation of God’s kingdom. The first soil was beside the road. These are those who hear but do not understand. The evil one quickly snatches away what understanding they do have just as birds will eat up exposed seed.

The second soil was the rocky places. This is the person who hears and quickly responds with joy, but since there is no depth of belief, as soon as affliction and persecution arise, the person falls away like a plant with shallow roots is withered by a scorching sun.

The third soil was filled with thorns. This is the person who hears and sprouts, but the worries of the world and deceitfulness of riches choke it out and it bears no fruit just like a vegetable plant can be chocked out by the weeds.

The fourth soil is the good ground that allows the plant to sink its roots deep. This is the person who hears and understands resulting in growth and fruit. This person has been firmly rooted in faith so that he still finds refreshment deep in the soil even when the sun is hot. Affliction and persecution come just as the Lord said it would, but he rejoices for he knows his reward in heaven is great and the prophets were persecuted the same way (Matthew 5:10-12). This is the person has learned to deal with the weeds in life and so outgrows and overshadows them so that he is still able to bring forth fruit. He has learned to take his worries and fears to the Lord in prayer and so gains the peace of God which passes all understanding (Philippians 4:6-7). He had placed his treasure in heaven seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and so that the riches of the world are no longer a distracting enticement to him (Matthew 6:19-34).

Those who walk in Christ have been firmly rooted. The Colossian church as a whole had already demonstrated by their good response to the gospel as explained in chapter 1 that they had been firmly rooted. There was danger that some among them might not be so rooted and Paul was seeking to cultivate them so that adversity and the weeds of the false teachers would not adversely affect them.

Being Built Up in Him is the next result of walking with Jesus. This is a present passive plural participle (of ejpoikodomevw / epoikodomeô) indicating it is something that is occurring to believers in the present time. Though there was certainly building up in the past when we came to faith and in the years that followed, we are being built up in the present and will continue to be built up until we either pass from this life into the presence of God or Christ returns. It is as Paul expressed in Philippians 1:6, “[For I am] confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”

The plural nature that believers are together being built up in Him is expressed in several other passages. For example, in Ephesians 4:1-16 Paul explains that God gives spiritual gifts to His followers for the purpose of them doing the work of ministry resulting in the whole body growing, maturing and being built up in love. The apostle Peter expressed this same idea in 1 Peter 2:4-5, “And coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected by men, but choice and precious in the sight of God, 5 you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”

God actively builds up a local church body through the people He has called to Himself. That is why it is so crucial to a local church that the believers within it are walking in Christ. A church can only be as healthy and strong as the believers that make it up.

Being Established in Faith is the next mark of walking in Christ. This is also a present passive plural participle indicating it is occurring to believers in the present time. The idea of the word used here (bebaiovw /bebaioô) is to make firm, secure, stable and hence establish. This describes the nature of what is being built. It is not enough to just build a large structure, there must also be strength in the building or it will collapse when tested by adversity.

When my sons were young, they enjoyed stacking wood blocks to build towers, but those towers could fall when someone walked by and would fall when one of the brothers decided to push it over. When I was visiting my folks in California after the 1994 Northridge earthquake, someone had posted a sign on the fence surrounding one of the many collapsed apartment complexes that read, “Should have used Legos.” What they thought was a safe and secure structure turned out to be weak and frail when the earth started shaking.

Our faith is Christ is not a leap in the dark as philosophers like to claim in their own ignorance. Our faith is firmly rooted and built securely upon the truth of Jesus Christ and His promises. As we walk in Him, the bonds of faith continue to increase and strengthen so that we remain firm even when we encounter the trials that test our faith that James 1:2-4 tells us will come. In fact, that same passage tells us that such testing will result in even greater maturity for the one that walks in Christ.

The analogy Jesus gives at the end of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 7:24-27 explaining the difference between the wise man and the foolish man give us additional insight into God’s establishing us in faith. The contrast in the analogy is between a house built on the sand of hearing, but ignoring Jesus’ words, and a house built on the rock of hearing and heeding Jesus’ words. The storms of life come against both houses, but the house on the rock remains firm while the house on the sand collapses. The only difference presented in the two houses is the foundation. The life lived apart from Christ collapses because the storms of life undermine it. They also have faith in the things they believe, but the difficulties of life prove what they believe is false resulting in either desperation or despondency. A life lived based on following Jesus is tested but remains standing because the foundation is solid. Every test of our faith increases our confidence that what Jesus said is true and that He keeps His promises. Those who walk in Christ are strengthened in their faith.

Overflowing with Thanksgiving is the final result Paul mentions here that marks the life of those walking in Christ. This is the only present active participle in the list indicating it is something the believers do in response to God’s actions. Having been firmly rooted, being built up in Him and being established in faith, their walk in Christ would result in thanksgiving for what God had done and was doing in their lives. Paul could have just said such believers are to be thankful, but he intensifies it by using the participle (perisseuvw / perisseuô) to describe it as overflowing or abounding with thanksgiving. As a river might overflow its banks, or a harvest so great it will not fit into the barns, so our thanksgiving to God should pour out of our lives.

Since this word is in the plural form, Paul is speaking about thanksgiving that is expressed publically and not just in private worship. It certainly would include corporate times of worship, but the description here goes much beyond that in describing a normal response in life. It is overflowing. It is thanksgiving that is also expressed when with friends and in the public square. Our society no longer does this as it once did, for it was once common for God to be praised in public as part of the course of normal daily life, and this still occurs to some degree in certain areas of our nation. For too long we have let non-Christians influence what we say in public, and it has been a continual deterioration over the last couple of generations. People are quick to curse and make vulgar comments, and too many professing Christians join in such ungodliness. We should be just as quick to praise God and give thanks to Him in public. That is not just in giving thanks before a meal at a restaurant (1 Timothy 4:4-5), but in casual conversation as well.

This is also thanksgiving that occurs in all circumstances. When Paul wrote this letter he was suffering in jail, but he found a lot of reasons to rejoice and give thanks and even made that a major theme in his letter to the Philippians which he wrote at the same time. His instructions on how to overcome anxiety through prayer includes thanksgiving as a crucial aspect of such prayer. Our prayers and supplications are to be made with thanksgiving and in that manner are our requests finally brought to God (Philippians 4:6). The response of those who walk in Christ will be one of thanksgiving. Because of all that God has already done for us and is doing for us in the present, we are to “continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name” (Hebrews 13:15).

May each of these characteristics increasingly mark your own life as you walk with Christ. If they do not, then take advantage of the rest of the body of Christ that is around you and let us help. That is one of the reasons we exist. If you are not sure who to talk to, ask any of our leaders and we can arrange for the help you need.

Sermon Notes – 9/5/2010

The Superiority of Walking with Christ – Colossians 2:6-7

Introduction

A mark of Christian _________is being more concerned about others and less about yourself (Phil. 2:3-4)

Paul’s desire was to “present every man ____________in Christ.”

He sought to ______________ their hearts with the truth of Jesus Christ resulting in unity based in love.

Colossians 2:6-7 – the ______________ means of resisting the deceptions that we will face

Receiving Christ

To receive something is to _______or take delivery of something that has been given or presented to you

The Colossians had received the Christ (the ______________), Jesus the Lord

As Messiah, Jesus is the fulfillment of the _____________from Genesis through Moses and the Prophets

Jesus’ identification as the Messiah designated Him the ______________ (Ps 2:7 cf. Matt.3:17) & the Lord

The command to walk in Christ is dependent on them having already _______________ Him

Receiving Jesus encompasses ____________ His claims and accepting His promises – John 1:12-13

To receive Jesus you must ____________sin, self and Satan and believe Jesus and His claims – John 3:18

The ___________ Jesus cannot save you.

You must ____________ Jesus’ promises and not your own efforts to be saved – Isaiah 64:6; Titus 3:5-7

Walk in Christ

A common metaphor for the ____________ in which a person is living – actions, attitudes, motivations

Used to ___________ wrong practices – 1 Cor. 3:3; Rom. 14:15; Eph. 2:2; 4:17; Col. 3:7; Phil. 3:18-19

Used to ______& encourage – Rom. 6:4; 2 Cor. 5:7; Gal. 5:25; Col. 1:10; 1 Thess. 2:12; Eph. 4:4; 5:2,10

Used to ___________ ways of life – Rom. 8:4; Gal. 5:16; 2 Cor. 4:1; Eph. 5:8, 15

We are to live in a manner reflecting the reality that Jesus is our ________& we are guided by the Spirit

It results from being transformed by a renewed ______and being a living sacrifice (Rom. 12:1-2; Gal. 2:20)

Firmly Rooted – perfect passive plural participle of rJizovw rhizoô

Those that have believed Jesus is the ______________ and received Him as Lord will be firmly rooted

The Parable of the Sower – Matthew 13. __________soil – the evil one snatches away understanding

The thorny soil – hears and sprouts quickly, but falls away when ____________and persecuted

The weedy soil – hears and grows, but choked out by worries of the __________& deceitfulness of riches

The good soil – hears, grows & bears _________. True faith _________despite affliction (Matt. 5:10-12)

True faith __________ when worried (Phil. 4:6-7). True faith sets it treasures in ________ (Matt. 6:19-34)

Being Built Up – present passive plural participle of ejpoikodomevw / epoikodomeô)

This is occurring to believers in the ___________ time – Philippians 1:6

Believers are built up ___________ – Ephesians 4:1-16; 1 Peter 2:4-5

God actively builds up a local church body through the ___________ He has called to Himself

Being Established in Faith – present passive plural participle of bebaiovw /bebaioô

The idea is to make firm, secure, stable and hence establish – it describes the __________of what is built

Faith in Christ is not a leap – it is firmly rooted and built up on the person and promises of ___________

The ________ man and the foolish man – Matthew 7:24-27

A life lived apart from Christ ____________because the storms of life undermine its foundational beliefs

A life lived walking with Christ ____________because the foundation remains solid in the storms of life

The testing of our faith _____________our maturity and confidence in what Jesus has said and promised

Overflowing with Thanksgiving – present active plural participle of perisseuvw / perisseuô

Those walking in Christ respond with thanksgiving in response to what _________has done and is doing

This is an overflowing, abounding thanksgiving – it pours out of our _________

It is thanksgiving expressed __________, not just privately – in corporate worship & in the public square

It is thanksgiving that occurs in __________ circumstances – Philippians 4:6; Hebrews 13:15

KIDS CORNER

Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – 1) Write down all the verses mentioned. 2) Count how many times “walk” or “walking” is used. 3) Talk with your parents about what it means to walk in Christ

THINK ABOUT IT!

Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. Why was Paul concerned for the Colossians given his circumstances and all the churches he had planted? What was Paul’s desire for them? How was he trying to accomplish that goal? The term “Christ” is the Greek for “Messiah” – what is the significance that Jesus is identified as the Messiah? What are some of the prophecies Jesus fulfilled as the Messiah? What is the significance that Paul identifies Jesus as “the Lord.” What does it mean to “receive” Jesus? How is that done? Why must you receive the Jesus of the Bible to be saved? Can you be saved by any other means that trusting Jesus and His promises alone? Why or why not? How did the Colossians demonstrate that they had received Christ? How does Paul use the metaphor “walk” in his letters? What does it mean to “walk” in Christ? What does it mean to be “firmly rooted?” Explain the parable of the sower (Matthew 13)? Why is the person firmly rooted in Christ not deterred by affliction or derailed by the worries of the world or the deceitfulness of riches? Who is doing the building up of believers? How is it being accomplished? What is your role in it? How does God establish believers in faith? Why is a Christian’s faith not a “leap?” What is the difference between the wise man and the foolish man in Matthew 7:24-27? Why the great difference in storm’s effect on the houses? Why should Christians be overflowing with thanksgiving? How should that thanksgiving be expressed – in private – in public? What effect should circumstances have on our thanksgiving? Explain. Are you walking in Christ? If not, why not and when will it change? Is your life marked by being firmly rooted, being built up in Him, being established in faith and overflowing with thanksgiving? If not, what needs to change? When will those changes be made? Who will you get to help?


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