Ephesians; 1:4 – Elected to be blameless. The church presented blameless – Col 1:22

Wednesday March 27, 2019

How are we going to have conduct just like, or of the same weight as our Lord’s? We have to be filled with the real knowledge of His will, by the Spirit, lived and understood.


Col 1:9 For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge [epignosis – full/real/deep knowledge] of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,


Col 1:10 so that you may walk in a manner worthy of [of like value with ] the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;


Col 1:11 strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously


Col 1:12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.


Col 1:13 For He delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son,


Col 1:14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.


Does it matter that we have the inspired word of God? Does it matter that we know, believe, and understand that the scripture is God-breathed and inerrant? How else could we know the will of God in spiritual wisdom and understanding if we are unsure that we have that knowledge from the very source of God?


In our nation presently, the belief in the inerrancy of scripture is at an all time low. According to a gallop poll, from the mid 1970’s to 1984 close to 40% of Americans believed the Bible to be the literal word of God. The same poll taken in 2017 shows that number to be 24%, and for the first time, the number of sceptics who think the Bible to be fables, exceeded the believers, at 26%.


The same thing happened in Israel. For approximately fifty years the word of God was no where to be found, it was lost. Guess where it was?


2Ki 22:8 Then Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the scribe, "I have found the book of the law in the house of the Lord." And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan who read it.


2Ki 22:9 And Shaphan the scribe came to the king [Josiah] and brought back word to the king and said, "Your servants have emptied out the money that was found in the house, and have delivered it into the hand of the workmen who have the oversight of the house of the Lord."


2Ki 22:10 Moreover, Shaphan the scribe told the king saying, "Hilkiah the priest has given me a book." And Shaphan read it in the presence of the king.


2Ki 22:11 And it came about when the king heard the words of the book of the law, that he tore his clothes.


2Ki 22:12 Then the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam the son of Shaphan, Achbor the son of Micaiah, Shaphan the scribe, and Asaiah the king's servant saying,


2Ki 22:13 "Go, inquire of the Lord for me and the people and all Judah concerning the words of this book that has been found, for great is the wrath of the Lord that burns against us, because our fathers have not listened to the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us."


Josiah, whose father was evil, became king of Judah at age eight. A few years later he began to eradicate Judah and the northern territories of Israel from idol worship. He tore down altars and burned and desecrated places of idol worship. He removed altars that had been put in the Temple courtyard by his grandfather Manasseh and began to rebuild the Temple that had fallen into disrepair. As they were bringing out the money that had been stored up in the Temple to pay for its repairs, Hilkiah found the book of the Law. It had been in the house of God all along, but neglected.


It is so important that we let our light shine so that men will see our good works and glorify the Father. We mustn’t have the attitude that someone else will do it.


The inspired word of God tells us the truth about Jesus Christ.


I must not see Him only in the theological sense, but as a Person who is my husband, creator, Lord, Savior, and friend.


Col 1:15 And He is the image [eikon – exact image as a stamp from a press] of the invisible God, the first-born [prototokos – priority and sovereignty] of all creation.


Col 1:16 For by Him [the: definite article] all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities —  all things have been created by Him and for Him.


Col 1:17 And He [Himself: pronoun used for emphasis] is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.


Col 1:18a He [Himself] is also head of the body, the church;


Col 1:18b and He is the beginning [Greek arche: originating power, author, or ruler], the first-born from the dead [the originator of a new spiritual life]; so that He Himself might come to have first place in everything.


Col 1:19 For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fulness to dwell in Him,


Col 1:20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.


Col 1:21 And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds,


Paul had never been to Colossae. He had never met any one of them. But yet, he knew it to be true that they were not only alienated (separated from God) but that they were hostile in mind and engaged in evil deeds. None of us could say that Christ saved us because we were a little closer to heaven then the rest.


Col 1:22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him [Greek: in His sight] holy and blameless [amomos] and beyond reproach — 


Gnostics taught that any reconciliation with God, which to them was moving up the ladder of the various eminences, a journey of works and secret knowledge, was all spiritual or of the human spirit and had nothing to do with flesh or any material. They counted all material as evil. God does not. God demands that we use the members of our body as instruments of righteousness. We can assume that, in refutation to the Gnostic heresy that had infiltrated Colossae, Paul emphasized that reconciliation was achieved through “His fleshly body.”


Gnosticism: all matter is evil.

God: matter is to be used for good.

We are reconciled in Christ’s “body of flesh.”


Yet so, Paul points out that the world was reconciled to God in Jesus’ fleshly body through His death. We imagine that Paul could have covered the doctrine of reconciliation with “reconciled in His body,” but he adds the genitive of sarx (flesh) = His body of flesh.


Heb 10:19 Since therefore, brethren, we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus,


Heb 10:20 by a new [freshly killed] and living way [Greek: road] which [entrance] He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh,


Notice that both the blood and the flesh of Jesus are instrumental in getting us on the road that only God travels.


Heb 12:1 let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us [the divine road in this world],


Heb 12:2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith


Heb 10:19 Since therefore, brethren, we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus,


Heb 10:20 by a new [freshly killed] and living way [Greek: road] which [entrance] He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh,


The word order in the Greek does not have “which” modifying “way” but the noun “entrance” (eisodos = literally “in a way” – an entering in). It was the entrance into the holy of holies in heaven that Jesus consecrated for us.


The way has always been, from eternity. It is God’s way, or in wonderful imagery, God’s road or highway. The problem for man has always been finding it and getting on it, but never could man create it or originate it. Jesus became the door that opened the way of God to us. He inaugurated the entrance so that all who believed in Him could enter. Now that we have the road to travel, we must make every effort not to be deceived into setting our eyes on some other road. The Lord said, “If your eye is singular, then your whole body will be full of light.” We have to, day by day, hour by hour, keep our eyes on the road of God.


“new” – prosphaton (pros – near to; phatos – kill) = freshly or newly killed/slain. Contrasting the old slain road (Law and Tabernacle) to the new (Christ life). 


This is missed in our translation. The contrast is meant to be drawn and we are meant to see it.


The writer has already pointed out that none of the OT sacrifices did anything against sin, but the sacrifice of Christ cleansed once and for all.


Heb 7:26 For it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens;


Heb 7:27 who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins, and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.


Heb 9:11 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation;


Heb 9:12 and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.


Heb 9:13 For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled, sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh,


Heb 9:14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?


Heb 10:8 After saying above, "Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin Thou hast not desired, nor hast Thou taken pleasure in them" (which are offered according to the Law),


Heb 10:9 then He said, "Behold, I have come to do Thy will." He takes away the first in order to establish the second.


Heb 10:10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.


The freshly slain way is the way opened by the last sacrifice. The only one that removed sin and redeemed, reconciled, and propitiated.


Heb 10:19 Since therefore, brethren, we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus,


Heb 10:20 by a new [freshly killed] and living way [Greek: road] which [entrance] He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh,


Heb 10:21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God,


Heb 10:22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.


Heb 10:23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful;


Heb 10:24 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds,


Heb 10:25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more, as you see the day drawing near.


In fallen man, prideful and in fear, there is a natural distrust of all others, which may or may not show itself, depending on the circumstance. The distrust of others is inherent in all of us because we are fearful of being taken from, taken advantage of, or losing our own comfort or reputation. To forget about ourselves and be only concerned for the benefit of another would be an act that would cause that fear to rise up and fight like a cornered wild animal.


But He who promised is faithful, Heb 10:23. What did He promise us? He said we are forgiven and cleansed. He said that He has cleaned out that evil conscience and has set us in the holiness and blamelessness of heaven. He said that He has taken our debt away and entered us into union with Christ.


Naturally, the Christian asks, “Well, if God has set His holiness inside me then why don’t I find it easy to be holy?” It is because the flesh is still with you. The flesh and the spirit war against each other. What we all need is strength of character and that comes from faithful waiting. Giving in to ever temptation will not build it. We have to fight.


A faith that makes no sacrifices exhibits no power, either in the world or in the church.


© Grace and Truth Ministries / Pastor Joseph Sugrue • cgtruth.org • All rights reserved.