Sunday Sermon Colossians Introduction Part 2

Colossians   •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  1:17:25
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Welcome

Good morning and welcome to FCC where we worship God in Spirit and in Truth, one verse at a time.
We are so glad that you have joined us this morning, and my prayer is that you came with expectation, desiring to hear for God.
Praise God the smoke has cleared and we even had a blue sky yesterday. Fall like temperatures are arriving so it is time to get out the fall clothes
Thank you for that song service team and now it is time for the Word.
General Electric Power Company

Read Colossians 1:1-8

Prayer

Review

Last week we looked at the where the church at Colossae was located, and we started to discuss how it started.
I need to remind you that even through the Apostle Paul wrote this letter, he did not start this church. In fact, scholars agree that he never even visited this church.
And church, the church at Colossae was a very small church, in a very small town. Let’s take a look at the map again to see where it is sandwiched.
4. Paul will mention three cities in this short 4 chapter, 95 verse letter: Hieropolis, Laodicea, and Colossae. We also learned that there was trade route that went right through Colossae and we talked about the trade route that we carry around in our own pockets (cell phone), or that we stream the trade routes into our own homes via the computer or TV.
5. Let’s not forget that 78 verses out of the 98 in this letter, resemble verses Ephesians. Remember, church that this letter was penned at the same time.
What are the prison epistles? Philippians, Ephesians, Colossians, and Philemon
Colossians 2:1 NKJV
For I want you to know what a great conflict I have for you and those in Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh,
Colossians 4:16 NKJV
Now when this epistle is read among you, see that it is read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that you likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.
6. We learned about Epaphras the man who Paul won to Christ while he was in Ephesus for 3 years. Epaphras is the fruit of Pauls labor church. He is only mentioned a few times in the Bible.
Remember church, God uses ordinary men and women like you and I, to do extraordinary things for Him.
Colossians 4:12 NKJV
Epaphras, who is one of you, a bondservant of Christ, greets you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.
Next, I want to Introduce you to the other man that helped start this little church, his name is Philemon.
Philemon is a personal letter that Paul wrote sandwiched between Titus that is a Pastoral Epistle, and Hebrews.
It is a 25 verse book that is a power-packed with the Gospel of Grace, or transformation, and of forgiveness.
What is shortest book in the Bible?
Third John (219 words)
Second John (245 words)
Philemon (335 words)
Obadiah (440 words)
Jude (461 words)
Just a little Bible trivia for you.

I wanted to stop for a moment and share a thought, because I know that book introductions can be a little bit boring and are often difficult to find practical application for our lives.

So here is an illustration that fits perfect:
Dr. Al Fasol, a retired preaching professor, wrote about the true story of a man who experienced a rude awakening in church. He generally slept in church, so he dropped off like he always did, only this time a power outage left the auditorium in total darkness. The pastor did not use notes to preach and kept right on preaching.
Somewhere toward the sermon’s end, the groggy parishioner woke up. He rubbed his eyes but couldn’t see a thing. He heard the preacher and could feel his wife and daughter on both sides of him, but everything was pitch-black. In a state of panic he stood up and declared, “Help me, I’m blind!” Laughter filled the darkened room, one complacent church member experienced revival at the altar of embarrassment, and one blessed pastor enjoyed poetic justice.
Epaphras means- lovley
Philemon
His name means one who kisses
Paul lead his to the Lord as well
Philemon had a large home, and scholars believe he was wealthy as he had slaves as the personal letter teaches us
Again this is a personal letter, although called a prison epistle is sandwiched in between Titus and Hebrews
Philemon 1–2 NKJV
Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, To Philemon our beloved friend and fellow laborer, to the beloved Apphia, Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church in your house:
So the church at Colossae was started by Epaphras in the home of Philemon and then the baton was handed off the Archippus his son.
Remember, the first churches were home fellowships. There was a greater intimacy that happened then versus now.
The underground church meets in homes and anywhere they can gather together to break bread and hear the Word of God. This church literally dies to be fellowship with one another for the sake of the Gospel.
The oldest know church is from the 3rd century. It is dated 232 AD and was found in Eastern Syria. This does not include synagogues.
In this verse we learn that Appia was Philemon’s wife, while Archippus was his son.
So Epaphras was the pastor of the Church at Colossae and eventually handed off the baton to Archippus Philemon’s son when he left the church to go to Rome to seek out Paul.
Why did Epaphras leave Colossae to seek out Paul in Rome? He traveled 1300 mile church !

Why was Colossians was written?

Epaphras left the church at Colossae and went to Rome to find Paul because heresy crept into the church, and Epaphras did not know what to do, so he sought out the Apostle Paul who was on house arrest.
Colossians 4:12–13 NKJV
Epaphras, who is one of you, a bondservant of Christ, greets you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God. For I bear him witness that he has a great zeal for you, and those who are in Laodicea, and those in Hierapolis.
I think it is important for us to see the picture here of humility, the picture of love that Epaphras had for the church and the flock that God had given him to shepherd.
There was no planes, no cars, no text messaging and no computers. They had boats, they had camels, and they had the sandals on their feet. He loved the church and the people as the Apostle Paul had taught him.
And I am guessing, that the Apostle Paul gave him specific instruction, that if he needed something or problems started happening, to seek him out for counsel.
So Paul wrote this letter to the Colossians because Epaphras traveled that long distance to Rome -1300 miles - and asked the apostle for help to deal with some major problems.

The Problems at Colossae

Gnosticism- they taught that spirit is good and matter is evil and that God is pur in spirit and there was a series of emanations or angels that proceed form God to earth. They were teaching Jesus was one of these angels.
Therefore, they were teaching the worship of angels and we know from the Word of God this is wrong and we will learn about this.
The Gnostics were also teaching that they had superior knowledge. And that the knowledge they had, which was in addition to Jesus and the Gospel was needed to combat the evil emanations/ angels. They taught there knowledge helped you get to God, that Jesus was not enough. Knowledge gnosis.
Colossians 1:9–10 NKJV
For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;
4. Human philosophy crept into the church, destroying the simplicity that is in Christ.
Colossians 2:8 NKJV
Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.
5. Legalism started to creep into the church. There was a small Jewish community there. They were trying to bring back circumcision, the dietary laws, the sabbath, and festivals. Saying Jesus is not enough. You need to do this or that in addition to having a relationship with Jesus. There was also asceticism creeping in as well as other false teaching saying Jesus is not enough.
Asceticism- severe self-discipline and avoidance of all forms of indulgence, typically for religious reasons. Asceticism is rigorous self-denial, particularly the rejection of the pleasures of the world. ... Asceticism comes from the word ascetic, which comes from Greek roots meaning monk, and practice or exercise.
Colossians 2:11–12 NKJV
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, 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 2:16–17 NKJV
So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ.
So, Paul wrote this letter church to correct all of this false teaching and urge these believers to see that Christ is all they need. He said in 1:22 that Christ had a fleshly body, in 2:9 that all of deity dwells in Him, and in 2:10 they are complete in Christ!
He strongly urges them to turn away from human philosophy, legalism, ceremonialism, angel worship, mysticism, asceticism.
In that wonderfully helpful third chapter he says, "look set your affection on Christ who is your life."
Chapters 1-2 speak of the supreme position of Christ; chapters 3-4 the sanctifying power of Christ for their lives and yours.
When Paul was Ephesus for three years, look what he prophesied in Acts 20:

Read Acts 20:17-32

So what is the application of todays lesson?
The trade route is real church. There was a trade route in Colossae that brought all kinds of false teaching into the church. There are many philosophies, methodologies, and other religions that are attacking Christianity.
The only way for you to know the counterfeit is to study the Book, God’s inspired Word that gives us everything that pertains to life and godliness. When counterfeit money comes into a town, did you know that the FBI has the tellers in banks study real money, true money, and not the counterfeit bills? Why? It is simple church, when they know what the true money looks like and feels like, they can spot the counterfeit a mile a way.
Believe me church those savage wolves that Paul spoke about in the book of Acts are here, in fact, I would suggest that there are more now that ever. just turn on your TV.
All this vicious systems church are set up to attack that simplicity of the Gospel. Each system be it secular, or religious seeks to attack the Supremacy of Jesus Christ.
They say, Jesus is not enough, that you must do this or that, that you have to keep this law or do that, that you must dress a certain way, or look a certain way, you must eat a certain way or??? The list goes on and on.
Finally, church, we are losing are freedom year by year. We are less free than our forefathers were.
Why are we losing are freedom?
It is simple, because the gospel is being compromised!
Because we are not fulfilling the great commission.
Jesus said, the Truth will make your free.
If we do not know the Truth, or study the Truth, or sit under the teaching of the Word of God, then how can we be free?

Prayer

Announcements

Are there any announcements?
Jars for Judy
Communion
Evergreen Church Donation-please keep them in prayer as today was their last day as a church.
Also, please pray for Amazing Grace Nazarene Church in Walla, as their pastor has stepped down.
Who can come tonight when I call to help unload?
Prayer Meeting at Yantis Park September 26 at 11am.

Benediction

2 Timothy 2:15 KJV 1900
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
The Lord Bless you!
Your Mission Starts now!

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