"What you believe about God is the single most important aspect of your life."
Paul always laid a strong doctrinal foundation in his writings before he explained how a Christian should live. The first chapter of Colossians serves as a rich example. These truths can be summed up in 3 statements:
- Jesus is . . .
- Jesus has . . .
- I must . . .
We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all God’s people— the faith and love that spring from the hope stored up for you in heavenand about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel that has come to you. In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world—just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God’s grace. You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.
For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation—if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.
Jesus is the image of the invisible God. Jesus is the first born over all creation. In Jesus all things were created, through Him and for Him. Jesus was before all things. All things are held to together in Jesus. Jesus is the head of the Body of Christ, the church. Jesus is the beginning, and the firstborns from among the dead. In everything, Jesus has supremacy. Jesus has all the fullness of the Father, and through Jesus, all things are reconciled--things on earth and things in heaven, by making peace through His blood, shed on the cross.
The Father has qualified us to share in the inheritance of His holy people in God's Kingdom. The Father has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and browught us unto the Kingdom of Jesus, in whom we have redemption--the forgiveness of sins.
We must be reconciled to Jesus by Christ's physical body through death to present us holy in His sight, without blemish and free from accusation--IF we continue in our faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the Gospel.
These are presented in ORDER as to how we come to Jesus and can't be reversed. We cannot make ourselves children of God by doing the things a child of God does or should do. It has to start with, "He is . . . ". That's the foundation we build on.
Who He is must be understood if we are going to grasp what He has done to save us.