Ants & Angels
For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth… All things were created through Him and for Him.
~ Colossians 1:16
The Bible says by Him, that is by Christ, all things were created that are in heaven and on earth. Whether angels or ants, the clouds in the air or the clover in a field, Jesus is over all things for by Him were all things made. Jesus Christ has the authority, the position, the preeminence over Creation and all created things. And ultimately, all things were not only created by Him, but were created for Him. Creation is a reflection of the glory of the Creator. Just as any great piece of art bears the influence and marks of the artist, so Creation itself shows forth the glorious handiwork of its Creator.
Be Looking Foward
Ascension Follows Resurrection
If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.~ Colossians 3:1 (NKJV)
Ascension follows resurrection: hence, if we are the members of Christ we must ascend into heaven, because he, on being raised up from the dead, was received up into heaven, that he might draw us up with him. Now, we seek those things which are above, when in our minds we are truly sojourners in this world, and are not bound to it… Let us therefore bear in mind that that is a true and holy thinking as to Christ, which forthwith bears us up into heaven, that we may there adore him, and that our minds may dwell with him.
~ John Calvin, Commentary on the Book of Colossians
Faith, Love & Hope
We give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of your love for all the saints; because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel~ Colossians 1:3-5 (NKJV)
Paul continues his greeting to the Christians at Colossae by acknowledging his thanks for God’s sovereign work of salvation and His precious gift of faith in Christ Jesus that has spread among them. The Apostle, verse 4, especially recognizes these believers for their love for all the saints. Their affection for fellow disciples of the Lord Jesus appears to have been well-known for Paul and Timothy to have heard of it from afar. Oh that more true Christians today would have their reputation for love precede them in their dealings with others!
And yet though these faithful Colossians were known for their exceeding earthly good, verse 5, Paul commends them for keeping their hope and gaze fixed upon the marvelous glory which was laid up and awaited them in heaven itself. For heaven, the place of unfettered communion with our Lord Jesus Christ, is truly the eternal prize and most precious blessing of those who trust in Him! Believers are but pilgrims and strangers here on earth. We know this is not our home, we are but passing through. And like the Colossians, we lay our everlasting hope above.
Finally, at the end of verse 5, we find the cornerstone and foundation for the faith, love and hope of the saints dwelling in Colossae, it is the “the word of truth of the gospel” which they had heard, believed and embraced. Wherever true Christianity will be found, it will be accompanied by the words of truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. There will be sound doctrine and godly teaching which humbles man and exalts Christ! Though without the words of truth as they pertain to the Gospel, a form of religion might be found, it will most assuredly lack the essential, saving, and effectual substance that is the fruit of the glorious words of truth.
A vibrant living faith is rooted in sound doctrine and godly Scriptural teaching. The blessings of a deep faith in Christ, an abiding love for God and others and the secure hope of your place in heaven are a consequence of being washed in the words of truth. Paul praises these qualities among the believers at Colossae. The Apostle thanks God, our Father, for these beautiful spiritual favors present among these saints. May we too seek the characteristics of faith, hope and love in our lives and thank God when He is pleased to grant them to us as well.
One From Old
One from old, Whose love so bold, Death can't hold, His life extolled, Sin's blindfold, Feels so cold, Salvation told, Faith's remold, In Christ's fold, Streets of gold.
In [Christ] also we have obtained an inheritance…~ Ephesians 1:11 (NKJV)
Those who are “in Christ”, that is, those who repent, believe and embrace Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior have had promised to them a great and glorious inheritance. Though this anticipated inheritance contains many countless benefits and blessings, the greatest of them all is the eternal communion and fellowship we will enjoy with the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.
But let us not forget the very nature of an inheritance; it is only received after someone dies. First, Christ died for us (the Surety of our inheritance), and then, as we live and die in Him, we obtain that true treasure. It is an inheritance. It is not something we fully realize here and now. The blessedness of the Christian’s reward may never be completely realized this side of glory. Yet as an inheritance, promised by a loving God, it is waiting for the Faithful who die in Christ in this world, only to be raised with Him in the next.
I wonder how long a man ought to thank God for forgiving his sins? Is life long enough? Is time long enough? Is eternity too long? How long ought a man to thank God for saving him from going down to hell? Would 50 years suffice? Oh no, that would never do, the blessing is too great to be all sung of in a millennium. Suppose you and I never had a single mercy except this one, that we were made the children of God and co-heirs with Christ Jesus – suppose we had nothing else to enjoy! We ought to sing about that alone forever and ever.
~ Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)
Deluged With Love
There, in heaven, this infinite fountain of love — this eternal Three in One — is set open without any obstacle to hinder access to it, as it flows forever. There this glorious God is manifested and shines forth in full glory, in beams of love. And there this glorious fountain forever flows forth in streams, yea, in rivers of love and delight, and these rivers swell, as it were, to an ocean of love, in which the souls of the ransomed may bathe with the sweetest enjoyment, and their hearts, as it were, be deluged with love!~ Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)
Thy main plan, and the end of thy will
is to make Christ glorious and beloved in heaven
where he is now ascended,
where one day all the elect will behold his glory
and love and glorify him for ever.
Though here I love him but little,
may this be my portion at last.
In this world thou hast given me a beginning,
one day it will be perfected in the realm above.
Thou hast helped me to see and know Christ,
to take him, receive him,
to possess him, love him,
to bless him in my heart, mouth, life.
Let me study and stand for discipline,
and all the ways of worship,
out of love for Christ;
and to show my thankfulness;
to seek and know his will from love,
to hold it in love,
and daily to care for and keep this state of heart.
Thou hast led me to place all my nature
and happiness in oneness with Christ,
in having heart and mind centered only on him,
in being like him in communicating good to others;
This is my heaven on earth,
But I need the force, energy, impulses of thy Spirit
to carry me on the way to my Jerusalem.
Here, it is my duty,
to be as Christ in this world,
to do what he would do,
to live as he would live,
to walk in love and meekness;
then would he be known,
then would I have peace in death.
~ Valley of Vision