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Colossians# 16 2-4 thru 2-5

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I.   Colossians 2:4-5

A.  Only this full knowledge and wisdom in Christ can keep you from being deceived.

1.    Many will come with their enticing words to try to get you off track or to error from the truth.

2.    These errors can be something as major as a false doctrine or something small like saying, "Oh, the Word is better over here." (Causing people to be bouncing from one church to another.) (Stop being so self conscious and start being more God conscious, what does He want.)

a)    It might be something like, "Oh, just have one drink, it's not going to hurt you."

b)    One might not hurt you, but it can lead to three, four or more.

B.  Paul goes on to mention that he could not be with them in the flesh, but he is with them in the Spirit.

C.  However, word must have gotten to him, and probably through Epaphras, how orderly the people were and how orderly the church was.

1.    The Word "ORDER" in this verse literally means, "rank, order or arrangement."

2.    This gives us a little indication that the church was operating in an orderly fashion, but also there was no jealousy in the church. Everyone respected the others anointing and gift. No one try to usurp someone else's authority.

a)    They recognized their rank, order, and arrangement.

D.  Paul then talks about their "steadfastness of their faith in Christ."

1.    The word "steadfastness" literally means, "solidness."

a)    They were strong in faith or better translated "they were solid in faith or strong in faith."

b)    The reason for this is that the word “faith” is linked with the article “THE,” but the Greek always puts the word “the” before most nouns; it is up the translator to include it or not.

(1)  The general rule is “if the noun makes sense with the article “THE” you include it, but if it is awkward in the sentence, you would leave it out.
(2)  In this case the article “THE” is found in this verse in the Greek, but the translators leave it off.
(3)  My point is, any time you see the phrase “Of THE faith,” you can leave the article off and say it “Of faith” instead of “Of THE faith.”
(a)   The same is true with “In THE faith,” you can word it “IN FAITH.”

2.    Faith in whom? And of course it is in Christ.

II.Col 2:6-7

A.  In verse 7 we see again that Paul says “Stablished in the faith.”

1.    (Stablished) This is not really a common word in the Greek, but according to Theological dictionary of the New Testament. (Kittel)

a)    It means “firm,” “steadfast,” “steady,” “reliable,” “certain.”[1]

2.    He goes on to say that in Col. 2:6-7 it would be best translated as (established in faith).

a)    Well, what does “established” mean?

b)    According to the Webster's collegiate dictionary it means, “to make firm or stable, to introduce and cause to grow and multiply: to bring into existence: bring about: to put on a firm basis : set up: to put beyond doubt : prove (established my innocence) [2]

B.  I got a little ahead of myself so let’s go back to Verse 6. (read)

1.    Now, Paul is talking to Gentiles who never walked in the Jewish law.

a)    So, he’s asking them, “How did you get saved?” And of course it was by faith, faith in Him.

b)    So, now he’s saying to them, “So now continue to walk in Him.” HOW, IN FAITH.

(1)  So, what he’s saying to them is don’t get caught up in the doctrines and traditions of men.

2.    Well, how are we to walk, “Rooted and built up in him, and stablished (strong) in faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.”

C.  Paul wanted them to be built up (edified) and strengthened in faith. If they did so they would not be blown to and fro with every wind of doctrine (Eph. 4:14 ).[3]

1.    Paul's desire for them was to grow and mature in the Lord.

a)    Often someone that is young in the Lord has a lack of stability and focus in the things of the Lord.

b)    The rabbit and the turtle.

c)     A sign of maturity is to listen. In a conversation, you don't always have to be the one talking.

(1)  You already know, what you know, listen to what you don't know.
(2)  Here's another nugget. When in the presence of one of God's general's, the Sergeants and nothing to say.

III.      Colossians 2:8-10.

A.  Here again Paul is dealing with Gnosticism and the error in their doctrine.

1.    The NIV translation says, "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.”

a)    Philosophy is similar to deductive reasoning. It is trying to analyze and reason everything.

b)    Listen to the Message translation for verse 8, "Watch out for people who try to dazzle you with big words and intellectual double-talk. They want to drag you off into endless arguments that never amount to anything. They spread their ideas through the empty traditions of human beings and the empty superstitions of spirit beings. But that’s not the way of Christ.”

(1)  I Just wanted to note, he didn’t say he was against all philosophy, just false philosophy.

2.    Next (still in verse 8) Paul mentions "vain deceit" or deception.

a)    Traditions of men or human traditions are very deceptive.

(1)  Thinking that "this is the way we've always done it" can be very misleading.
(2)  Why have you always done it that way?

b)    An example of tradition is the thinking that it is Christ-like to be poor.

3.    The New Revised Standard Version says this, "See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, c and not according to Christ." [4]

WOLCC May 22, 2003 Thursday


[1]Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. (1995, c1985). Theological dictionary of the New Testament. Translation of: Theologisches Worterbuch zum Neuen Testament. (Page 103). Grand Rapids, Mich.: W.B. Eerdmans.

[2]Merriam-Webster, I. (1996, c1993). Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary. Includes index. (10th ed.). Springfield, Mass., U.S.A.: Merriam-Webster.

[3]Walvoord, J. F., Zuck, R. B., & Dallas Theological Seminary. (1983-c1985). The Bible knowledge commentary : An exposition of the scriptures (Col 2:6). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

c Or the rudiments of the world

[4]The Holy Bible : New Revised Standard Version. 1996, c1989 (Col 2:8). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

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