The Final Exam: Colossians 1:28-29
“28) We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ. 29) For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.” Colossians 1:28-29
Paul had one goal with people, he labored to present “every man complete in Christ.” The early church focused on making sure people were acceptable to God. The modern church has changed everything. We are preoccupied with making God acceptable to man. This is extremely problematic.
In the process, the modern church has taken God off the throne and put human reason and emotion on the throne. We have made people the judge of God… rather than God the judge of people.
Whenever that happens, the gospel is distorted and human religion replaces a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. The church becomes a social club and the Bible is scrutinized by mere human reason and set aside in favor of philosophical conjecture and worldly values. As a result, the modern church produces people who are religious but lost. We feed and promote agnosticism.
The same pressure was there in Paul’s day, but he refused to water down the gospel or yield to humanism. He kept Jesus Christ as the center of his message and labored to “present every man complete in Christ.”
These two verses changed the focus of my life and ministry. I switched from living to please self and others to sincerely seeking to please God. I switched from approaching the Bible rationally to reading it devotionally. I invited the Holy Spirit to use the Word of God to teach and transform me. I stepped down as the authority and yielded to the authority of Scripture.
That was a monumental change in my approach to God. My entire Bible College experience was rational and placed little emphasis on the Holy Spirit or life application. Without realizing it, a disconnect developed between my soul and Spirit.
Human reason sat on the throne of my life and the Holy Spirit was often marginalized and grieved which resulted in a religious veneer masking my carnality. It took a long time and conscious effort to fix this sinful disconnect in my life. I was the byproduct of the modern church.
I also switched my approach of ministering to people. Instead of having a fear of man, I developed a conscious fear of God. I was more concerned about what God thought about my preaching and teaching than what people thought about it.
My new goal was to reach people with the power of the gospel and force them to wrestle with God and the conviction of the Holy Spirit. I also stopped counting “decisions for Christ” and started looking for “genuine conversions.” I wanted to see people encounter Jesus Christ and be transformed by His power. God used 1 Corinthians 2:1-16 to champion my metamorphosis.
The takeaway from these two verses is monumental. God will not one day stand before us to judge whether or not He is acceptable to our human reason and value system. Not at all! Rather, each of us will one stand before the Judgement Seat of Christ to determine whether or not we are acceptable to Him. (See 2 Corinthians 5:9-10) At that moment the burden of proof will be on you and me. The one question you must resolve before that day: “Are you complete in Christ?” Are you ready for the final exam!
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global
The Final Exam: Colossians 1:28-29