Mar. 14, 2021. Colossians 1:9-12

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DISCIPLES IN THE MIRROR.  Colossians 1:9-12.  03/14/21.  #2.

Ill – Checklist for true disciples

Colossians 1:9-12 [New King James Version]

9 For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10 that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; 12 giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.

  1. Paul summarizes what it means to be a disciple of Christ
    1. Paul had never been to Colosse
      1. Epaphras had established the Colossians church
      1. Paul was answering questions from the Colossians
        1. Important to correct false doctrine and errant practices
        1. New believers need to be grounded
    1. Paul prays for specific areas of maturity in Colossians saints
      1. These are the same attributes needed for all
      1. Paul’s prayers needed to be answered with submission and response by Colossians believers
      1. Paul starts with a list of qualities necessary to become a mature Christian
    1. Three aspects found in all spiritual saints:
      1. The knowledge of the will of God
        1. Imperative will of God — found the Word of God (obedience to Word is primary—James 1:22-25)
        1. Implied will of God — knowing and understanding God’s principles (applies to many situations)
        1. Indicated will of God — specific calling for each individual
      1. All wisdom—James 1:5 God can lead a believer in both understanding (knowledge) and applied wisdom (prudence)
      1. Spiritual understanding – seeing things as God sees them (there is worldly wisdom and celestial wisdom)
        1. Spiritual understanding leads us to recognize, avoid and shun sin
        1. The spiritual seek God’s teachings, understanding, and will
  2. Paul lists 6 results of the spiritual walk
    1. A worthy way of life
      1. Worthy is not perfect, but commendable in the sight of God (Noah, Joseph, Job, Daniel)
      1. Untainted way of life (free from sin and pride)
    1. Pleasing God – concerned about pleasing God instead of pleasing self (a submission of will to God)
    1. Fruitful in all good works – a Christian is spiritually productive in home, service, and beyond (John 15:1-8)
      1. God opens doors to minister to others
      1. Fruit is Gospel, at home, among neighbors…
      1. I Corinthians 11:1, a worthy example before others
    1. Increasing in the knowledge of God – grows in knowing Word of God, understanding Him and his ways
    1. Strengthened in all areas of the Christian walk:
      1. All might by his glorious power (strength to withstand evil, persecution, and demonic forces)
      1. In all patience and longsuffering (power over flesh)
      1. In all joy (Philippians 4:4, even in difficult situations)
    1. Partakers of the inheritance of light (walk in the reality of a victorious life leading to the celestial palace)
  3. A lofty summary
    1. This ideal list needs fleshed out and takes a lifetime of focus
    1. This requires an ongoing conquering of the flesh
    1. Spiritual goals are reached only by understanding and focus
    1. Pursuit of holiness is the greatest endeavor of all

Key verse: John 15:1-8

1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He [a]takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you[b] will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.