Sermon: Kingdom Work Colossians 1:24-29

  1. We suffer afflictions WITH Jesus FOR the church (v. 24)
  2. We work to make the word of God fully known (v. 25-27)
  3. We proclaim, warn, teach. (v. 28)

Our Goal: present everyone mature in Christ (v. 29)

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The Mission of the Church

In Colossians 3:12-17, Paul exhorts Christians to put on the character of Jesus and exemplify Christ likeness in the church.  Why is it important for the church to exemplify the character of Christ?  The answer is quite simple, to put the gospel on display.

Matthew 5:13–16 “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.  Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

The mission of the church is to put the gospel on display.  When Faith Baptist Church lives in harmony with one another, putting on love while bearing with one another in humility, meekness, and patience, those outside the church will notice.  Those who do not know Jesus will see the harmony that we have, and be amazed.  With Paul, I exhort you to “let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” so that it overflows into the community, bringing many people to faith in Jesus through your actions, and through your faithfulness in sharing the gospel with them.

The Before-and-After of the Christian Life

Today’s text (Colossians 1:21-23) gives us a beautiful before-and-after picture of the Christian life. It is very common for advertising companies to use before-and-after images in order to prove the power and ability of the product they are trying to sell.  This is the sort of thing Paul is giving us here. This is your situation before Christ saved you: because of your sin, you were “alienated, hostile in mind, doing evil deeds.” This is your situation now by the grace of God: you are “reconciled” in order to be presented “holy and blameless and above reproach” before God.

This amazing, before-and-after picture does not make much of you.  It merely shows how far you have come in your spiritual maturity.  This picture clearly makes much of God’s power in the way He gives sight to the spiritually blind (Matthew 11:5). This picture glorifies God in the way He gives life to us: we who were “dead in our trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1).  As your reflect on the sermon, remember the immeasurable grace of your savior Jesus Christ who, despite the fact that you were in rebellion against Him, loved you and saved you.  What an amazing God we worship.

The book of Colossians has been a huge blessing in my life.  If you are interested in going through Colossians in you devotional time, I would encourage you to consider The Hope of Glory by Sam Storms. My wife and I have been greatly blessed by reading this devotional together. I also recommend a book called The Hole in Our Holiness for anyone who would like to learn more about the joy of seeking holiness.

The Hope of Glory by Sam Storms

100 daily Meditations on Colossians

The Hole in our Holiness by Kevin Deyoung

Tells of God’s power to help us grow in personal holiness as we enjoy the process of transformation