I wanted to title this "Commands of Colossians" but I was afraid that might be off-putting. I love the commands of the New Testament. I love it when Jesus says do what I said, and makes us responsible for what He has commanded, then empowers us to do them. But, in this culture, people don't like being told what to do. That is sad. They think authority is evil, but God's authority is for our protection.
Colossians 1:17 He (Christ Jesus) is before all things and in Him all things hold together.
So when we lean on Christ, when we draw near, hold fast, (more of my favorite phrases) we are completing the circuit or plugging into it? ((electrical analogy---seeing as how my husband is an electrical engineer, and my youngest is an electrician))
Colossians 2:2 "...KNIT together in love." (sorry, but I am a knitter---so I jump on those verses)
Commands of Colossians:
1:10 Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work. (it is not a suggestion)
Walk...bearing fruit...good work
1:12 Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light. (what/who are "saints in Light?")
1:23 if you continue in the faith firmly established. (continue is the command to me)
2:6 ...as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord so walk in Him,
2:8 See to it that no one take you captive through philosophy and empty deception,
2:18 Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize
2:19 (taking the liberty of rewording the command here from the negative) Hold fast to the Head Christ (the whole Body of Christ) grows with a growth which is from God.
3:1,2 "...keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. vs. 3 For you have died and our life is hidden with Christ in God.
3:5 Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
(idolatry is immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, greed. where/how am I immoral? impure? passionate as in crusader arrogance, where do I have evil desires? where am I greedy? I curse and say bad words when I am angry, frustrated, impatient.)
Col. 3:5-11 Put aside: immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, greed, anger, wrath, malice, slander, abusive speech from your mouth, do not lie to one another, put on the new self... where there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, freeman, BUT CHRIST IS ALL AND IN ALL
vs 12-17 You are chosen of God! Holy and Beloved.
Chosen of God, Holy, Beloved, Christ is all and in all...in you. Put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, bearing with one another, forgiving each other, forgive just as Christ forgave you.
Put on Love which is the perfect bond of unity, let the Peace of Christ rule in your hearts to which indeed you were called in one body and Be Thankful. Let the word of Christ rightly dwell in you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.
How do we admonish one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs? I think it points to a corporate worship. singing together---which means we need to assemble together, and maybe too, as responsibility and knowing the psalms we sing!
(keep all the previous verses in mind---in context---are you sitting down??)
Colossians 3:18 WIVES BE SUBJECT TO YOUR HUSBANDS, AS IT IS FITTING IN THE LORD.
(still with me? do you find this offensive? irritating? mean? don't miss the blessing. hang on. repent and stay with me here)
Don't lift it out of context and beat your wife or daughter or daughter-in-law with it. Keep it in context. Go back and re-read Colossians so far, if you need to. "Fitting" means right, good, proper.
fun aside: I see Mammy, in the movie, Gone With The Wind, saying: "It ain't fittn'...it just ain't fittin' " for something Scarlet is planning on doing.
"Subject" to your husbands is important for unity and peace and "in the Lord" reveals by the Lord's power and done as UNTO the Lord plus not as in a crime and/or being an accomplice.
Only You, Lord, can empower, motivate, show me how to be subject to my husband without sinning in my heart, without eye rolling, without respect. quietly. lovingly, just as Christ is subject to His own Heavenly Father: serving, praying earnestly to, communicating, beseeching, (see Gethsemine) but when it is time to move, time to act, time to go to the cross, do so with honor, love, willingness, without fear, doing your job, your duty, giving your loyalty, devotion, giving all without reservation on that cross JUST AS CHRIST. Just as Christ: obedience, endured, was spat on, beaten, despised, misunderstood, meek, praying for His enemies. When your husband asks you to do something hard, something you'd rather not, something painful, even to the point of death, remember Christ our example. Jesus asks us to submit. Be subject to our husband even as Jesus is/was subject and submitted to the Father. And as our example--we don't do it blindly, but LIKE Christ, we tremble, sweat blood, pray for this cup to pass from us, yet we TRUST, go, serve, do, even if...
Even if ...
Hard times are coming when marriage is under attack, ridiculed. I think this privilege---this opportunity is not being taught to women. Our Christian daughters and dear daughters-in-law need to know that soon the world will revile, despise them for being subject and submitting to their husbands. But it is a GIFT, on this earth, now. in time. not in heaven. We can only do it now. We are going to be given the daily, hourly, private or maybe public opportunity to demonstrate Jesus Christ, our example, as a wife. To submit, to be subject to our husband. I tremble, Lord. For me, for my daughter-in-law, for the friends and women at my church, and the women in the Body of Christ: Help us not miss this unique opportunity to stand up for marriage. Marriage is Biblical, created by God!! God's design. God's purpose. God's objective and mission. Give us Your supernatural strength in our hour of need, Lord. When persecution comes, when teaching our sons and daughters, at church, in public, for we desire to hear: "Good and faithful servant" when we get to heaven.
The enemy, in the disguise of the equal rights women's movement has been attacking and depriving women of this for years. Men are told to Love their wives just as Christ: even being willing to lay down their lives for her. provide. protect. And it is easy when respect, love, trust is there. But, computers can be hacked, reputations ruined, silly laws broken, or immoral laws--stood against costing a man his livelihood and family security. When a husband has to stand for what is right, he answers to God and often it costs him his life, his job, his ability to provide for his family. Please give my daughters-in-law and granddaughters the knowledge of why You set it up this way and a clear understanding of the privilege to be Christlike in subjection and submission--but only to our own husband and only as unto God. We are not told to be subject to other women's husbands.
This opportunity, this test, this obedience, posture, needs to be done in the Filling of the Holy Spirit, hourly, daily, in the household tasks, in the watchcare over the children, teaching of the children, as well as in deference to the husband in household decisions, plans, upkeep, as well as decorum at church, in public, with friends, encouraging your friends to be so also with their own husband...for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health... Watching your husband's back, serving, sensitive, respectful, loving and gentle. I tremble. I am afraid because the tests often blindside us and I am guilty of being unkind, frustrated, impatient, sarcastic, mean, selfish, picky, unforgiving, moody.
When we get to heaven and we see the stack of crowns of missed opportunities, it will be too late. And I have been married 35 years...lots of wasted opportunities.
When those who shack up, live with---before marriage, they miss these opportunities to be like Christ. To love just as Christ. To forgive just as Christ, to serve, wash feet, endure persecution, endure beatings, being spit on, slapped by the world, by the cruel religious, dirty, mean, immoral crowd, who see you as a threat. They are the truly intolerant. Please get us ready, Lord. Gird up our loins. help us strap on the full armor of God, know our scripture, and how to use it, help us know when to speak, when to fight, when to stand, when to wait, when to run, when to endure. In Jesus name. Help us remember that Jesus is the example for the husband as well as for the wife. Only here can we do this. Only here on earth, in time, before we die or are raptured, can we honor Your Son, Jesus, in suffering, in service, in persecution, in sharing the Gospel, in boldness. Keep us with our priorities in proper perspective. Help us avoid crusader arrogance, fear, phoniness, idolatry, greed, gluttony, escaping into books, movies...bring EVERY thought into captivity for Christ. In Jesus name. Amen.
Colossians 3:23 Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men...it is the Lord whom you serve.