1:1-2:7    ‘In everything’ Christ is ‘pre-eminent’ (18). In Him, there is salvation – ‘redemption, the forgiveness of sins’ (14) – , sanctification – ‘mature in Christ’ (28) – and service – making Him known (27). Everything is in Christ. In Him are ‘all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge’ (2:3) – all that we need for salvation, sanctification and service. We must go on with Him – ‘Just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him’ (2:6). How are we to live in Him? – ‘rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught and overflowing with thankfulness’ (2:7). Remember all that the Lord has done for you. Give thanks to Him. He has loved you so much. He has done so much for you. Let gratitude be your attitude. Filled with His strength, we will go from strength to strength.

2:8-3:17    Be what you already are. Be what God has made you in Christ. This is what God is saying to us here. ‘You have been raised with Christ… You died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God’ (1,3). Paul is describing the new birth. Christ has made His home in us. New life has begun. Now that  Christ lives in us – what are we to do about it? How are we to live? – ‘Set your hearts and minds on things above’ (1-2). This is how we are to live. We are to live out the life which God has put into our hearts. The new life begins when Christ comes to live in us. It does not end there. That is only the beginning. We are to go on, ‘being renewed in knowledge after the image of our Creator’ (3:10). Christ wants to reign in us. He wants to enrich our lives (3:15-16). In Him, there is so much blessing. Let’s enjoy it!

3:18-4:18    God calls us to pray – ‘Devote yourselves to prayer’. We are to pray with concern – ‘watchful’. We  are to pray with gratitude – ‘thankful’ (2). We are to pray for those who preach God’s Word. Thank God for the past. Trust Him for the future. Remember – the important thing is the ‘message’ (3). The messengers are just ‘jars of clay’. The message is the ‘treasure’ (2 Corinthians 4:7). The messengers must not draw attention to themselves. They must direct attention away from themselves to Jesus Christ – ‘We do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord’ (2 Corinthians 4:5). We are to pray that the message will be ‘clear’ (4). Pray for good preaching – preaching which does you good, giving you good cause to say in your heart, ‘For me it is good to be near God’ (Psalm 73:28). Pray for preaching which glorifies God.

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