Nov. 20 – (Col. 3: 18-19) For many years these two verses has been debated and redefined. I still don’t think we have a good handle on what God was saying through Paul’s words. Of course, it’s the definition of the word “submit” with which we are having trouble. How do you define this word? Are there conditions to it? As we heard on Sunday we need to attach the next part…”as is fitting in the Lord”. What we do “in the Lord” changes all our doing. That is where we need to go as we struggle to interpret this verse and live it out.
Verse 19 is just a little easier for me to understand. It helps to include Ephesians 5:25. “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” If husbands constantly loved their wives as Christ loves the church, so much He died for them, can you imagine how the wives would submit (however you define it) to them? We all fall short in our part as compared to Christ but we keep working at it.
Nov. 21 – (Col. 3:20-21) Now Paul is instructing children. Paul’s words to children reflect the fifth commandment. I found myself saying, “Oh yeah, it is one of the commandments!” It is another reminder that while Jesus completed the works of the Old Testament, the commandments are still true and need to be remembered and obeyed. Now though we have the Holy Spirit to guide us in obedience of those commands while we know we are seen righteous before God because it is through Jesus’ blood and victory over the commands we may break. Thank you so much Jesus! As a parent, it is difficult to train our children to obey. We need to remember that along with keeping them safe and healthy (by obeying) it is pleasing to the Lord.
Nov. 22 – (Col. 3: 22- 4:1) Being a bondservant in NT times was different from the cruel institution of slavery in North America during the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries. Bondservants (also slaves and servants) generally were permitted to work for pay and to save enough to buy their freedom. Matt. 25:15 shows servants that were entrusted with immense amounts of money and responsibility. This puts a whole new light on this passage, doesn’t it?
Nov. 23 – (Col. 4:2) We could say volumes about this one sentence. Let’s just concentrate on 3 phrases about prayer: 1. Continue steadfastly 2. Be watchful 3. With thanksgiving. Who do you steadfastly pray for specifically? I must admit; my habit is to pray for a specific person for a while and then they kind of drop off my radar until I feel a need to start back up. Is that steadfast praying for them? Hmm
What are we watchful for when we do pray? Are we watchful to pray God’s will and not our own? Then, are we thankful for our God who has only good planned…no matter the outcome we see with our eyes? Selah
Nov. 24 – (Col. 4:3-4) Paul began this letter by telling the Colossians that he was thanking God for them and praying for them. He now draws toward a close by asking them to do the same for him. No matter how “mature” we are in Christ, we still need the prayers of the youngest Christians. We need each other. I think Paul was trying to get this idea across.
Paul also knew he could talk all he wanted but unless God opened a door for the Word to go through, he would just be talking to the air. Prayer is a key for those doors to open. When have you seen a door open for you in response to the prayers of other Christians? Be thankful to God and those praying for you.
Nov. 25 – (Col. 4:5-6) How do we regard “those who are outside”? Verses 5-6 gives us some help. Disciplined thought and planning should go into sharing Christ’s love with others. How about when non-Christians act like non-Christians? How do you react…or act? Thank wisely about your response… “Grace be with you. Amen”
Nov. 26 – (Col. 4:7-9) Tychicus was a native of Asia Minor. He was a member of Paul’s ministry team (Acts. 20:4). He will carry this letter, as well as Ephesians and Philemon (Eph. 6:21-22), and bring them news about Paul. How do you think Paul felt about Tychicus? If there is anyone you know like him, communicate to them how valuable they are to the Lord.