“PUTTING CHRIST BACK IN CHRISTIANITY – Part 1”
INTRO: We’re going to begin a series from Colossians on the theme, “Putting Christ Back in Christianity.” Have we made Christianity more about us than about Christ? The theme of Colossians is the preeminence of Christ (1:18). Preeminence means first in everything. Christ should be first in or among all things – especially first in rank, dignity, honor and power. Christ is named 26 times in the four chapters of Colossians! Let’s look at what it means to give Christ preeminence in all things and see what happens when we actually live this out!
I. THE GREETING IN CHRIST (1:1-2).
- The church had been infiltrated by false teachers who detracted from the deity of Christ.
- Paul is writing this letter from a Roman prison. *What are you doing with your difficult circumstances?
- Paul was an apostle of Jesus (Saves) Christ (Hebrew – Messiah; Greek – Anointed).
- Paul declares God’s grace & peace to the Colossians.
II. THE THANKSGIVING IN CHRIST (1:3-8).
- Paul offered thanks to God and prayed for them regularly (1:3, 12; see also 2:7; 3:15, 17; 4:2; 1Thess. 5:18).
- A sign of maturity is when we can give thanks in every circumstance. Do you?
- For what did Paul & Timothy thank God for?
- For their faith (upward) in Christ Jesus (v. 4a).
- For their love (outward) for all the saints (vv. 4b, 8).
- For their hope (forward) in eternity (the future) (v. 5a).
- For their response to the gospel (vv. 5b-8, 23).
- Which was bearing fruit everywhere (vv. 6, 23).
- The gospel is available to all people, regardless of class, group, age, race, gender, etc.!
- What are people hearing about you? What fruit is this gospel producing in your life?
- The ministry of Epaphras (v. 7; 4:12-13; Philemon 1:23).
CONCLUSION: Let’s put Christ back in Christianity! Let’s give Jesus preeminence – first place – in everything!