ANCHORED DAILY: Intro to Colossians

posted by Bethel Communications | Aug 5, 2022

One of the many things I really appreciated about Pastor Jason Greene is that he encouraged our staff leadership to value mentoring. Pastor Jason believed as leaders we should always have someone older than us who was speaking wisdom and truth into our lives, and someone younger than us that we were speaking wisdom and truth into their lives. In other words, we are the learner and the teacher at the same time, as we never stop learning and we never stop sharing what we have learned.  Thus, faith, hope and love carry on through many generations.

Hello podcast friends! This is Angie and today we are looking at an overview of the book of Colossians.  I think this book is a great reminder of that mentoring philosophy shared by Pastor Jason, as we see Paul speaking truth into the Colossae church. The purpose of a mentor is to take all the experiences and wisdom that they have accumulated throughout their life, and then purposefully transfer it to the mentee for their benefit. A mentor provides leadership, guidance, and instruction. We see Paul doing just that in this letter, as he lays out his journey and lessons learned.

Paul he had never been to the city of Colossae. The Church there was started by his co-laborer, Epaphras. At some point, he visited Paul in prison and gave an update about how things were going. The report about heresy distressed Paul. Scholars believe Paul penned Colossians in a Roman prison cell around 60-61 AD. His purpose was to refute the heresy, sharing his wisdom and experience with the Colossae church, as their mentor and friend.

What was the heresy that distressed Paul?  One commentary noted, “The church at Colossae was under attack from false teachers who were denigrating the deity of Jesus; they were teaching that He was not actually God. Though Paul had never been to the church itself, he addressed these issues head-on. Paul wrote to them that he might bring his wisdom to bear on this difficult and trying situation. It was critical to him that this church know God in His greatness and glory, rather than in the deficient view given them by the false teachers.”

Interestingly, the book of Colossians, written nearly 2,000 years ago, is just as relevant today, with its warnings against following false philosophies and teachings. Christians today are bombarded at every turn with false teachings: from cultural relativism, universalism, Gnosticism, Christian nationalism, the prosperity gospel and more. Interest in the spiritual realm through mystics, psychics and others is at an all-time high.

Paul’s message was simple but impactful:  Jesus is enough. Jesus is pre-eminent over all of creation, above all earthly philosophies, false teachings, and idols. Jesus is enough.

Kelly King from Lifeway noted these five mentor qualities in Paul that lead him to be an excellent leader, qualities that show up in this letter to the Colossians:

1-        Paul gave instruction on life and spiritual matters.  You and I can trust Paul’s letters and wisdom even more because they aren’t his opinions—they are the Spirit-breathed words of God. Paul breathed truth into the church at Colossae.

2-      Paul mentored from the overflow of his own walk with the Lord.  Mentors speak from the overflow of how God is molding them into His image. Paul never wavers from this truth.

3-      Paul admonished believers caught in conflict, yet he sought peace in relationships. Paul understood believers may have personal disagreements, but the outcome should move toward reconciliation and restoration.

4-      Paul cared for the personal welfare of those he mentored.  Over and over again in his letters, Paul mentions those who contended for the gospel with him. The salutations and greetings found in his letters are a reminder that Paul didn’t play only the role of teacher, but he cared for those he mentored as a shepherd and friend. 

5-      Paul understood the principle of replication and multiplication.  Christ called his disciples to make disciples who make disciples. There is a calling to replicate ourselves in the lives of others, which results in a multiplication effort of spreading the gospel to the nations. But that Gospel means nothing if it’s not taught in truth.

This is why mentoring matters. We need each other. We need people who aren’t afraid to point out who we are in Christ, and point us back to the truth of the Gospel. Do you have a mentor speaking into your life?  Is there someone in your life that you allow to realign you towards truth and wisdom?  Someone who can say, “I think you’re wrong here,” and you humbly submit to their wisdom with a willingness to examine and seek how the Lord might be speaking to you through them? Jesus is enough and we need others to point us back to that reality.

Let’s pray: Jesus, you are enough. May we seek mentors and be mentors, so that the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is spread to the ends of the earth. Amen.


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