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Putting Christ Back in Christianity – Part 4

“PUTTING CHRIST BACK IN CHRISTIANITY – Part 4”

Today: “Christianity, Philosophy & Legalism” (Col. 2)

I. THE PREEMINENCE OF CHRIST OVER PHILOSOPHY (2:4-8)

  1. Don’t be deceived by philosophy & pseudo-science (v. 4).
  2. Live a well-ordered life (v. 5a).
  3. Be steadfast in your faith in Christ (v. 5b).
  4. Christ must be received, not just believed (v. 6a; Jn. 1:12).
    1. Be Grounded (walk & be rooted) in Christ (v. 6b-7a).
    2. Be Growing (built up, established, & abounding) in Christ (v. 7b).
    3. Be Grateful (abound with thanksgiving) in Christ (v. 7c).
  5. Secular philosophy is empty deceit, based on man’s tradition, the world’s principles & is contrary to Christ (v. 8).

II. THE PREEMINENCE OF CHRIST OVER LEGALISM (2:9-23).

Legalism – trying to obtain right standing with God through man-made rules and disciplines.

  1. Christ is indwelt with the fullness of the godhead (vv. 9-15).
    1. You are complete in Christ – the head of all principality and power (vv. 10a, 15).
    2. You were circumcised in Christ (v. 11).
    3. You were buried with Christ in baptism (vv. 12, 20; 3:3).
    4. You were raised with Christ (v. 12b; 1:18; 3:1).
    5. You were made alive with Christ (vv. 13-15; Heb. 8:13).
      1. Jesus disarmed and triumphed over principalities and powers (v. 15, 10; 1:13a).
  2. Christ is the substance (vv. 16-19).
    1. Develop your own convictions on external matters of diet, religious celebrations and holy days (v. 16).
      1. Focus more on Christ than rules (v. 17).
    2. Don’t be deceived by (or follow) those who come across as super spiritual (mysticism) (vv. 18-19).
  3. Avoid legalism & asceticism, which don’t give you power over your flesh or spirituality (vv. 20-23).
  4. Characteristics of Legalism.

CONCLUSION: Let’s put Christ back in Christianity and give Christ preeminence – 1st place – in everything!