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Tuesday, January 30th, 2024

Scripture: Col. 2:18 Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize by delighting in self-abasement and the worship of the angels, taking his stand on visions he has seen, inflated without cause by his fleshly mind,

Col. 2:19 and not holding fast to the head, from whom the entire body, being supplied and held together by the joints and ligaments, grows with a growth which is from God.

Teaching: In verse 16-18, Paul generally says that believers should not feel less than other believers or be compelled to certain practices for the sake of attaining or maintaining salvation because, as he stated in verses 9-15, they are already complete in Christ by faith. In verse 19, Paul lands this argument by diagnosing the cause of such wrong teaching: not holding fast to the head (which is Christ). The verb “hold” is krateo, which also appears in Jesus’ critique of the Pharisee’s traditions. In these cases, they were “holding to the traditions of the elders” and “of men” and “letting go of the command of God” (Mark 7:3, 4, 8). Thus, the key fault of those in Colossae who were teaching falsely was not that they did not love Christ or believe in Christ – it was that they held fast to their traditions rather than to Christ himself. Paul is saying that believers should hold onto nothing except Christ because in him, as the head, comes life and growth for the body (the Church).

Takeaway: Today, we do not lack information. What we lack is discernment. When we have questions about Christianity or the Bible, we can find information easily, but understanding what is right and what is not, or what is fruitful and what is unfruitful, is difficult. Remember that we are not called to know everything about the Bible, Christ, or Christian doctrine – we are called to simply know Christ, and believe. If you are feeling overwhelmed or confused, hold fast to Christ and trust that in time, the Spirit will give you discernment. Though seeking knowledge and understanding is a good thing, spend more time in prayer than research. See that in verse 19, Paul says that the body of Christ, and each of us individually, when we hold fast to Christ, “grows with a growth which is from God.” Growth in your walk with Christ depends on being close to Christ, and God causes the growth to happen, not you.

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