Tuesday, July 20, 2021

2021.07.20 Hopewell @Home ▫ Colossians 3:12–15

Read Colossians 3:12–15

Questions from the Scripture text: What three things does Colossians 3:12a call us? What five things does verse 12b command us to put on? In order to put these on, what must we always be doing with one another (Colossians 3:13a)? And what must we further do, under what circumstance (verse 13b)? What is the pattern for forgiving when we have a legitimate complaint (verse 13c)? What place does love have (Colossians 3:14)? What does this verse call love? What must rule in our hearts (Colossians 3:15)? In what way were we called to this? What else must we be?

Next week’s Call to Worship, Prayer for Help, Song of Adoration, and Prayer of Confession all come from Colossians 3:12–15, so that we will see that we are singing God’s thoughts after Him with It Is Well with My Soul.

The knowledge of Christ’s forgiving us (Colossians 3:13b) enables our hearts to be ruled by the peace of God (Colossians 3:15) by assuring us of the three glorious realities that the apostle highlights as he addresses the Colossian believers at the beginning of Colossians 3:12.

Elect. God is not obligated to give anyone mercy. For Christ to come at all, for Christ to die on the cross, for spiritual life to be given to any individual in order to believe in Christ, it all had to come from the free choosing of God. He had to choose to do so, and everyone for whom He has done so was freely chosen by Him. 

For us, this means that our salvation can never fail. What began in the Creator cannot be undone by the creature. Because our peace with God is a peace that has been forged by God, it is an everlasting, complete, and unwavering peace. If you have the peace of God, it is because you are the elect of God. Hallelujah!

Holy. God doesn’t make alliances with evil. His eyes are too pure to look upon evil. The Judge of all the earth will do right. If you have the peace of God, it can only be because you have been set apart to God as holy by being united to Jesus the Holy One, and you have been accounted as holy by means of Jesus’s own holiness. Now, God’s perfect commitment to His own holiness is demanding that every genuine good possible be done for you.

Beloved. It is not only God’s eternally unchangeable choice and unwavering holiness that have brought you peace with God, but His love. Election by God is in Christ, the beloved. Holiness unto God is in Christ, the beloved. Peace with God is in Christ, the beloved. God is love—all that love is, God is. And in this is love, that Jesus laid down His life for us (cf. 1 John 3:16) because God loved as and sent Him for us (cf. 1 John 4:9). 

Having peace with God means that you are elect, and holy, and beloved! And by that confidence that you are elect and holy and beloved, the peace of God rules in your heart. When this is the ground of your peace, and the effect of your peace, what can possibly shake it? What sorrows? What blows from Satan or trials? Can these take away a peace that has come through the cross of Christ? Or the sure hope of salvation in the last day?

By this peace, we are enabled to love others with those tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, and longsuffering to which Colossians 3:12 commands us. By that same peace, we are able to bear with one another and forgive one another (Colossians 3:13). 

If we have that peace with God, and our brother also has that peace with God, we see that we are called together in one body (Colossians 3:15). Love for one another as those who are one in Christ is the perfect bond for holding us together (Colossians 3:14). This is the result, when our whole life is lived as a thankful response to peace that has been perfectly obtained for us (end of Colossians 3:15).

Over what sorrows are you grieving? How is Satan attacking you? Through what trials are you going? What peace do you have in the midst of this? How does this enable you to treat others?

Suggested songs: ARP23B “The Lord’s My Shepherd” or TPH476 “It Is Well with My Soul”

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