Colossians 2:1-3 ESV
“For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”
The gospel of Jesus Christ is under severe attack these days, and so for us who are teaching the true gospel message of our salvation, we are indeed struggling for the church on several levels.
For one, we want to encourage those who are faithful servants of the Lord Jesus, who are following him in his ways and in his truth, who are being persecuted for standing on the word of God and for not compromising their faith or their morals with the world.
Please know that you are not alone. Please know that there are others out there who are going through what you are having to endure, or who are enduring persecution for their faith in other ways than what you are going through, but who sympathize with you in your suffering.
So, don’t give up hope. Know that your faith will be rewarded. So, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God with which to fight off those attacks of Satan on your life and on your witness for Jesus Christ. And, keep pressing on in living for the Lord, for it will be worth it all.
And, on another level, we want to encourage those who are being tested in their faith, and who are struggling with doubts regarding their faith due to so many different teachings of the gospel being spread.
Please know that Jesus died that you might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He died to deliver you from slavery to sin, not merely to forgive your sin. He died, too, to empower you to live a life of holiness and purity (Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24; 1 Jn. 1:5-9).
Colossians 2:4-7 ESV
“I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ.
“Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.”
Like I said, the gospel of Jesus Christ is under attack, and it is being perverted, twisted, diluted, and misrepresented to say something the gospel of Jesus Christ does not say at all. It has some elements of the true gospel or otherwise it would not be able to deceive so many people to buy into it.
But what it is teaching is not the straight way that John the Baptist, Jesus, and his New Testament apostles taught. No, what they are teaching is a “side-walk,” i.e. something that is off to the side of the straight path. It is something in addition (an add on) to the true gospel and it serves as a substitution for the true gospel, as well.
So, where did this false gospel originate? Well, it was passed down to pastors from the top down, because, regardless of church denomination, most all institutional churches are teaching it in America. So, it came from people in high up positions within the US government and within church denominations who are in bed with one another.
And, they have convinced ministers of the gospel to teach this perverted, half-truth, diluted gospel message in place of the true gospel that Jesus taught. And, they are dragging many people along with them by charming, enticing and persuading them that the lie is the truth and that the truth is the lie, so that many will desert the faith to go after the flesh.
So, we need to not give in to them. But we must remain strong in our faith in the strength of the Lord. And, we must walk in Christ, according to his Spirit, and not according to this half-truth perverted “side-walk” gospel. We must forsake our lifestyles of sin, and we must follow our Lord Jesus in obedience to his commands (Rom. 6:1-23; Eph. 4:17-24; Lu. 9:23-26).
Colossians 2:8-10 ESV
“See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority.”
So, to not be deceived by these wolves in sheep’s clothing, who are out to deceive the masses, we need to know the truth. We need to study the Scriptures (IN CONTEXT). And, we need to compare Scripture with Scripture so that we get the whole context of the gospel message, and so we don’t just cherry pick the Scriptures that pacify us in our sin, when taken out of context and made to say something they are not saying.
And, we need to tear down those lies of Satan with the truth of God’s Word, and we must expose them for the perversion of truth that they are. We must stand strong against our enemy and his many hordes by putting on that armor of God with which to fight off his lies and his evil attacks against us.
And, we must not allow ourselves to fall into Satan’s traps, or to be taken captive by his false doctrine of salvation which coddles people in their sin rather than putting sin to death. And, we must speak out against these lies so that others will not fall into the trap of the devil, too.
For, this is spiritual warfare, and Satan means business. He is not going to give up. He will do everything within his power to defeat us, to persuade us, or to kill us if we do not comply with him and take his mark (influence) upon our lives.
Know that this false gospel they are teaching is a swindle, a fraud, a trap. For, if you buy into the lies, and you go the way of the flesh, and not the way of the Spirit, then you will certainly die in your sins, not have eternal life with God (Gal. 5:16-21; Eph. 5:3-6; Gal. 6:7-8; Rom. 2:6-8; 2 Co. 5:10).
Alas! and Did My Savior Bleed
Hymn lyrics by Isaac Watts, pub.1707
ref. by Ralph E. Hudson, 1885
Music by Ralph E. Hudson, 1885
Alas! and did my Savior bleed
And did my Sovereign die?
Would He devote that sacred head
For sinners such as I?
Was it for crimes that I had done
He groaned upon the tree?
Amazing pity! grace unknown!
And love beyond degree!
Thus might I hide my blushing face
While His dear cross appears,
Dissolve my heart in thankfulness,
And melt my eyes to tears.
But drops of grief can ne’er repay
The debt of love I owe:
Here, Lord, I give myself away
’Tis all that I can do.
At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,
And the burden of my heart rolled away,
It was there by faith I received my sight,
And now I am happy all the day!
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