Colossians 2:11-23 Not the Law But Christ

The apostle Paul, having revealed the mystery about salvation and its attainability to each man, both Jew and Gentile. Through faith in Jesus Christ and repentance of our sin, believers are freely given the gift of eternal life.

In his letter to the churches of Colosse and Laodicea Paul now addresses the works based teachings to which his readers had been exposed.

11 In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.” (Colossians 2:11-12)

Here the apostle uses circumcision, a common tradition among the Jews to illustrate his point, that through faith in Christ and His divine sacrifice, all our sins are washed away, not only a small piece of flesh.

To be in Christ involves water baptism, when a believer publicly proclaims his faith by physically being buried, under water, then raised from the dead to reign forever with our creator in heaven.

13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, 14 having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.“(Colossians 2:13-14)

Paul calls all believers once dead of our own sins yet now alive in Christ, forgiven of our sins, which came at a price paid by the Lamb of God on the cross. Through faith we are delivered from the law of Moses instead saved by the law of Christ which is based on love rather than rules.

15 Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.”(Colossians 2:15)

Paul recalls when Jesus overcame Sin then Satan and his angels by rising from the dead in a triumphant resurrection. Evil lost the ultimate battle, as did the law which relied on sin and transgression of the lack thereof for salvation when in fact God’s judgment on men replies on our love for Him. His judgment is not based on His love for us, which is unconditional, the creator’s judgment men fear is actually nothing fearful at all! Why? Because its outcome is entirely up to each of us. We decide where we end up, either Heaven or hell. We choose to triumph over evil, armed by the word of God and shielded by faith in Jesus Christ, our Lord and savior.

16 So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ.”(Colossians 2:16-17)

Paul lists ritualistic laws imposed on the Jews according to the law of Moses which was shed with the blood of Christ as He died on the cross. Jesus’ death nailed to a tree was the fulfillment of prophecy found in scripture dating thousands of years prior to His divine, though humble birth. Through Christ believers are delivered from the law and its rituals and holy days.

18 Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 19 and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God.“(Colossians 2:18-19)

Paul warns believers of false teachers who imposed dietary and holy day laws as foundation for salvation which contradicted the true gospel of Jesus Christ which called for love, agape, not the law.

The humble in Christ will be known by their anonymity, exceptional character and company, all bindings holding the body of Christ, His church together.

20 Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations— 21 “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” 22 which all concern things which perish with the using—according to the commandments and doctrines of men?“(Colossians 2:20-22)

Because believers renounced the world, Paul rhetorically asks the Colossians how they could continue to abide by a law that’s been replaced by a covenant based on love, faith and forgiveness rather than works. As for God’s commandments, they were meant for a breed who had no knowledge of the messiah, as we do.

23 These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in self-imposed religion, false humility, and neglect of the body, but are of no value against the indulgence of the flesh.“(Colossians 2:23)

Paul calls useless the gnostics’ self-imposed sacrifices meant to deceive rather than glorify. Such rituals are the continuation of a law that’s been made new by faith in God’s only begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.

Let us not abide by age old laws meant for the Jews, instead let all believers rejoice in Christ like love as we endure and preach the gospel until His triumphant return. Let us pray!

Father God;
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Paul,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.

Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.

God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.

May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.

We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.

Praise God,
Amen!

This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre
Email: DanielStPierre@ThriveThroughChrist.com

Posted in Bible Studies.