The Master's Instructions about Himself. Colossians 1:9-2:10.
Paul wrote about Jesus Christ as if he had known Him for years on this earth. In fact he had only briefly met the risen Lord while on a journey to Damascus. When he asked, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ he was told, ‘I am
Jesus, Whom you are persecuting’ (Acts 9:5). That was his first
encounter with Jesus, but not his last. The rest of his life was spent in praising God for his knowledge of Jesus Christ, and pursuing God for a greater knowledge of Him. He was very concerned that the people he led to faith
in Jesus Christ should also grow in their knowledge of God. In beginning
his letter to the Colossians, Paul links God the Father and God the Son.
He says that God is ‘the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ’ (1:3), God is the
founder of ‘the kingdom of the Son He loves’ (1:13), and that ‘God was
pleased to have all His fullness dwell in [Jesus Christ] (1:19). A true
Christian knows Jesus Christ as God’s only begotten Son.
Jesus Christ is God’s Son (Colossians 1:3, 13)
The Father’s voice from heaven said, ‘This is my Son,’ immediately after
Jesus was baptised (Matthew 3:17). Peter spoke up that he believed
Jesus to be ‘the Christ, the Son of the living God’, after the Father
revealed the truth to him (Matthew 16:16). He had lived with Jesus –
watching Him and listening to Him, wondering about Him and learning from
Him. A Roman centurion who watched Jesus die on Calvary’s cross
exclaimed, ‘Surely He was the Son of God’ (Matthew 27:54). From before
the creation of the world, through the time He was conceived in Mary by
the Holy Spirit; through His crucifixion to His crown in glory now, Jesus
Christ is God’s Son.
Jesus Christ is the image of God (Colossians 1:15)
God expressed Himself to the human race in a form that we could
understand. Jesus Christ as a man is God’s expression of Himself to us.
We receive an unmistakable impression of what God is like, what He does,
what He wants, Who He is and how He acts, when we look at Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the Son Who shows His Father’s characteristics because the
fullness of God lives in Him. We cannot see Him as Peter did, nor as the
centurion did, nor probably as Paul did, but Jesus did promise that the
one who believes will be blessed (John 20:29).
Jesus Christ is the Creator of the world (Colossians 1:16-17)
What is true of everything else in the world around us is not true of
Jesus Christ. He is not a creation of God. He is God the Creator. He
was before all things and He is the beginning of all things. He was present
at creation. Genesis 1:26 records God saying, ‘Let Us make man in Our
image, in Our likeness’ (italics mine). John said that nothing that has been
made has been made without Him.
Jesus Christ is also the power of creation. His word once created
something out of nothing and His will now keeps all things from becoming
nothing again. What a comforting thought, to think that He who made all
things now promises to make all things new in the life of any believer.
Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church (Colossians 1:18-21)
His resurrection leads to our regeneration. Although we were in a state
of alienation from God, because of our sin, we can now live in
reconciliation with Him because of our Saviour. Christ took our sin onto
His body and saved us with His blood. His propitiation made peace with
God for us.
All men and women who are born again belong to His church. He is our
Head and we make up His body. He expresses Himself through our hands
and our hearts. We express ourselves to Him by our worship and witness.
If I am born of God, then Jesus Christ, God’s Son, is my Saviour. I must
learn to receive Christ Jesus as Lord and be rooted and built up in Him.
It is not sufficient to become a Christian. I must also be a Christian. The
resources I need are all in Christ and Christ now lives in me.
Discussion guide on ‘God the Son’
Read Colossians 1:9-2:10.
1. Discuss briefly how anyone can “grow in the knowledge of God”, 1:10
2. What fundamental change has occurred in the Christian, according
to 1:13-14? Share ideas on what this means in everyday life.
3. How many facts about God the Son can you find in verses 1:15-23 ?
Perhaps you can make two lists:
What God the Son is and What God the Son does
(There are at least 8 facts).
4. Now put all of those Bible quotations, from your lists, into your own
words, trying to express exactly what the Bible means about God
5. Humankind was created in the image of God, Genesis 1:2,6-27.
God the Son was born as “the image of the invisible God”,
What does this tell you about the kind of life Christians should
lead in order to be what we are made by God to be?
6. “Christ is the mystery of God, in Whom are hidden all the treasures
of wisdom and knowledge”, Colossians 2:2-3. Why is it vitally
important to learn as much as we can about Jesus Christ?
7. Put Colossians 2:9 into your own words, being very careful not to
change the meaning of the text. Share it with other class members
for their comment.