"Continue steadfastly in prayer, watching therein with thanksgiving; praying together for us also, that God may open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds: that I may reveal it as I ought to speak." Colossians 4:2-4 NHEBWe began this section last week, but I only worked with the first part of a verse. Now I want us to complet the thought that was written.
Paul is asking the Christians in Colossae to pray for an open door for the word he is to speak. Then he tells us what that word is. He says, "...to speak the mystery of Christ,...". He was not called to just speak to people about some general love from God. He was not called to speak what we would call elementary items about the word. No, he was called to declare boldly the "mystery of Christ."
This "mystery" he defined elsewhere as "Christ in you the hope of glory." Christ dwelling in the gentiles as well as the Jews. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is the "mystery" that although spoken of in the Old Testament, was not seen nor understood. That was mainly because it is written there in "shadow" or "type" form. It was not intended to be understood until the Lord had risen from the dead and poured out the Holy Spirit on that day of Pentecost.
The "indwelling," which eliminates all definitions of distance between the Lord and His people, is what the religious folk of Paul's day fought him about. This risen Jesus who now lives in us, the glory of God now dwelling in man, in every believer was and is something that cause folk to balk at such revelation.
The Lord has forgiven all sin. Yes, each of us must willingly accept that in Him to make it effective for us, but it is accomplished. He does not climb back on the cross when someone sins. It is done. Because that is true, Christ through the Holy Spirit now lives in all who will receive Him, and they become His temple. It is not a temple made with human hands to house (host) Him, but the temple He has always looked forward to - the temple made by Himself - the humans who choose Him.
Such an awesome mystery. Our modern systems often do not fully embrace this completed work and therefore many times we are trying to get closer to God. We need to completely re-think such approaches and begin to accept the empowerment of this mystery Paul preached. It will revolutionize our lives and our churches.
May those of us declaring the Word, declare this mystery clearly. Lord, You are so awesome in every way - magnify Yourself in us!