by Johnny Hunt

Johnny Hunt
Col. 1:12-14
May 15, 1994

INTRODUCTION: If Ephesians can be labeled the epistle portraying the "church of Christ," then Colossians must surely be the "Christ of the church." Ephesians focuses on the body; Colossians focuses on the Head. Paul's purpose is to show that Christ is preeminent, first and foremost in everything, and the Christian's life should reflect that priority.

In the passage before us today, we find the characteristics of those who walk in the will of God as a result of knowing Christ as preeminent in salvation. The text describes this as heartfelt, genuine thankfulness that grows out of our experience with Him. Christians should never forget what God has done for them, and they should allow that life-changing experience to bring them daily joy. Christians who are filled with the Holy Spirit will be joyful and thankful. When we lose our joy, we start complaining and becoming critical. Paul gave thanks for the church in Colosse and he prayed that they might grow in their own thanksgiving to God. According to 2:7, the Christian life should abound with thanksgiving. The Christian who is filled with the Spirit, filled with the Word, and watching in prayer will prove it by his attitude of appreciation and thanksgiving to God. Thankfulness is the very opposite of selfishness.

The selfish person says, "I deserve what comes to me. Other people ought to make me happy." But the mature Christian realizes that life is a gift from God, and that the
blessings of life come only from His bountiful hand.

Lord, may I always be grateful!

EXAMPLE: In Evanston, Ill., there is Northwestern University. Years ago, the school had a life-saving squad that assisted passengers on the Lake Michigan boats. On Sept. 8,1860, a passenger boat, the Lady Elgin, floundered near Evanston, and a ministerial student, Edward Spencer, personally rescued 17 persons. The exertion of that day permanently damaged his h ...

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