Conquering the Conflict
The Apostle Paul had never seen the Christians at Laodicea and Colosse face to face but it is very evident from his writing that he had deep concern for their spiritual welfare.
He had a deep burned upon his heart for their spiritual and eternal well-being. Col. 2:1
For I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh;
It was Paul's desire that his brethren be "perfect (complete) in Christ" - Co 1:28; 2:1-3 But there were influences at Colosse which endangered their salvation, against which Paul warns in Co 2:8-23
As we consider what those threats were, we see similar threats today as well! In other words, subtle (and some not so subtle) influences which may promise us much, but can easily lead us away from Christ!
It would do all of us good to ask have I any real concern for the souls that are lost and on their way to hell. How deep is our concern for them?
I. THE NATURE OF THE CONFLICT
What kind of conflict was this? When Paul uses the word conflict what is he referring to? It was not primarily a physical conflict; it was spiritual, mental and emotional.
Paul yearned over the Christians at Laodicea and Colosse, and this yearning drove him to intercessory prayer on their behalf. Do we have such concern for our brethren?
Paul was carrying a spiritual burden, a spiritual desire for these Christians to experience the blessings of the Lord upon their lives. They had been converted under his ministry and they were entrusted to his spiritual care and Paul wants them to experience the fullness of blessings in their lives.
Such conflict, of course, does affect the body. Doubtless the guards in Paul's "hired house (Acts 28:30) not only heard the apostle pray, but they saw him pray, as he lifted his arms toward Heaven and as his whole being seemed to tremble as he poured forth his petitions.
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