The Battle for Truth: Colossians 2:1-3
“1) For I want you to know how great a struggle I have on your behalf and for those who are at Laodicea, and for all those who have not personally seen my face, 2) that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself, 3) in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Colossians‬ ‭2:1-3‬
Paul wanted the believers in Colossae and Laodicea to know about his struggles in the gospel so that they might better value their salvation. I met a wounded veteran one time who had lost an arm and a leg serving our county in war. He was wearing a teeshirt that said, “Freedom is not free!” It got my full attention. He had made his point! Colossians 1:28-2:1 was Paul’s teeshirt.
In the same way, salvation is not cheap. It cost Jesus His life. Neither is the spread of the gospel free. Many have sacrificed much and even given their lives for the spread of the gospel. Learning these stories remind us that we have something invaluable “In Christ.” It is worth more than life itself.
Every Christian shares a common heritage in Christ. Reading what others have done for the sake of the gospel is an encouragement that knits us together in love. The Spirit of God creates a unity among us.
But it is more than just a shared heritage. We are part of a mystery “in Christ.” Verse 3 says, “In Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Colossians 1:12-27 unpacked some of the mystery of the true identity of Jesus Christ, but growing in knowledge and relationship with Him literally opens the door to liberating truth in the spiritual realm.
Why is this important? From ancient times people have been trying to unlock secret knowledge in what can be called “the Mystery Religions.” These include all forms of pagan religions from ancient Babylon to Greek Mythology. The common thread in all of these religions has been the search for hidden or mystery knowledge and enlightenment.
This has led humanity down some dark and devastating paths of demonic deception. Many of these religions and sects revolve around sadistic practices including sexual perversions, people control and suppression, human sacrifice, various forms of the occult, serving evil spirits and outright Satan worship. (See Revelation 17-18)
This quest for secret knowledge and enlightenment dominated every pagan religion of Paul’s day. These religions filled a void but left people intoxicated with deception and hopelessly entangled in sinful bondage. They become enemies of Christ and the truth. New age religions of our day are little more than a resurgence of these ancient religious rites and practices.
Part of Paul’s motivation for writing the book of Colossians was to expose and counter these secular and spiritistic practices that were creeping into the Christian church. Paul wanted the Christians to know that Jesus Christ was sufficient and they were complete in Him. More of this will come into focus as the book of Colossians unfolds.
The main point of Paul’s message was that the gospel is complete! The Bible is true! We don’t need Jesus Christ plus secular psychology, humanistic philosophy or borrowed religious spiritism. These things distort the truth and pervert Christianity.
In the book of Colossians, Paul pressed the point that Christians are not only “complete in Christ”, but knowing Him in His fulness is far superior to anything the world or the kingdom of darkness has to offer. Every Christian must resolve the battle for truth and decide the foundation they will build their life on.
This battle for truth within the Christian church has never been greater than today! Much of what is being marketed as Christianity today is little more than repackaged humanism or pagan spiritism. It is void of biblical truth. Do not be deceived.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global