May 11, 2016
Colossians 1:9-12 (English Standard Version)
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
300 Million Steps is the number of steps I calculate that I will tale in my lifetime! This huge number of steps is the result of my addiction to walking (at least my wife says I am addicted to walking!) To keep arthritis as bay and to stay limber, I average over 40 miles a week! And over an anticipated 65 years of walking (if I live to age 85), I will have taken about 300 Million Steps!
All this came to mind as I considered Colossians 1:9 through 12 (English Standard Version), which records the Apostle Paul’s prayer and desire for the Christians of Colosse:
…from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking
that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual
wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the
Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and in-
creasing in the knowledge of God. May you be strengthened with all
power, according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience
with joy, giving thanks to the Father….
Paul prayed that the believers in Colosse “…may…walk in a manner worthy of the Lord…,” or to live in such a way that their lives would please Jesus Christ! And he surrounds that statement with eleven things relevant to their Christian walk. We covered the first four in our last blog. Let’s continue:
• Colossians 1:10 – “…bearing fruit in every good work….” Jesus told us in John 15:1-8 (the parable of the Vine and the Branches) that we are to be fruitful. As a matter of fact, in verses 2 and 5, He qualifies that in three degrees: We are to bear fruit, more fruit, and much fruit! But the fruit we bear must be good works, good in God’s sight! And the only way to produce fruit that is good in God’s sight is to rely on the Holy Spirit to keep us vitally connected to the vine, Jesus Christ! He tells us in John 15:5, “For without Me you can do nothing.” But the flip side of this is Philippians 4:13: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
• Colossians 1:10 – “…and increasing in the knowledge of God.” We are challenged in II Timothy 2:15 (1899 Douay-Rheims Bible) to “Carefully study to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” This should be a life-long pursuit for the Christian – to know more and more about the Savior, His Word, and His way!
• Colossians 1:11 – “May you be strengthened with all power….” This power will happen if we pursue “…increasing in the knowledge of God.” The Holy Spirit takes that increasing knowledge and somehow turns it into the spiritual power to live out the life God intends for us to live!
• Colossians 1:11 – “…according to His glorious might….” Remember, it is God’s doing, for He is the One with all power and might ! As Paul tells us in Philippians 2:12 and 13, “…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.”
• Colossians 1:11 – “… for all endurance and patience….” This is why God gives you “…power according to His glorious might….” It is not all happily dancing through life after we accept Jesus as our Savior! As it is written in II Timothy 3:12: “…all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” The world system is opposed to God and His Christ because it is under the control of Satan! Jesus was persecuted for living godly and teaching righteousness, and so shall it be with us!
• Colossians 1:11 – “…with joy….” One of the most remarkable statements in Scripture is Hebrews 12:2, which admonishes us to keep…
…looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy
that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has
set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
What joy could have kept Him on the cross when He could have called “…more than twelve legions of angels…” (Matthew 26:53) to come and rescue Him? It was the end goal of that great sacrifice – our salvation and glorification! And that same idea should give us joy even through the trials of life and persecution (if it should come) in our experience!
• Colossians 1:12 – “…giving thanks to the Father….” Paul admonishes us in Ephesians 5:20 and I Thessalonians 5:18:
…giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our
Lord Jesus Christ…in every thing give thanks; for this is the will of God in
Christ Jesus for you.
This is a lot to consider as you take you journey of 300 Million Steps (or however long your Christian walk will be). May you be faithful to “… to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him….”