Colossians Chapter 3 Continued
Colossians 3:15 “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”
“The peace of God” The Greek word “peace” here refers to both the call of God to salvation and consequent peace with Him (see note on Rom. 5:1), and the attitude of rest or security (Phil. 4:7), believers have because of that eternal peace.
This “peace” is the harmony and concord created by God among His people. It is to “rule.” This Greek verb means to act as an umpire who makes decisions in an athletic contest. Thus, “let the peace of God rule in your hearts” means that when believers are at odds with each other, whatever course of action best maintains peace and fosters harmony is the course to be taken.
Jesus is the King of Peace. When we make Him the Lord of our life; the peace of God does rule in our heart. He brings the kind of peace that goes beyond explanation. In the midst of trouble, His peace causes us to be calm. It is called the Peace beyond understanding. This is the peace that Job had when he was under such great attack.
Colossians 3:16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”
“Word of Christ”: This is Scripture, the Holy Spirit Inspired Scripture, the word of revelation He brought into the world.
“Richly in all wisdom” (see notes on Eph. 5:18). “Richly” may be more fully rendered: “abundantly or extravagantly rich” and “dwell” means “to live in” or “to be at home.” Scripture should permeate every aspect of the believer’s life and control every thought, word, and deed (Psalm 119:11; Matt. 13:9; Phil. 2:16; 2 Tim. 2:15).
This concept is parallel to being filled with the Spirit (in Eph. 5:18), the power and motivation for all the effects is the filling of the Holy Spirit; here it is the word “richly” dwelling. Those two realities are really one. The Holy Spirit fills the life controlled by His Word. This emphasizes that the filling of the Spirit is not some ecstatic or emotional experience, but a steady controlling of the life by obedience to the truth of God’s Word.
“Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs” (see note on Eph. 5:19).
When believers are forbearing, forgiving (verse 13), and loving (verse 14), toward one another, when peace reigns among God’s people (verse 15), then the church is fertile soil for the blessings produced by “the word of Christ.”
Jesus Christ our Lord is the Word of God. The Bible is the Word of God. If you hide this Word of God in your heart, no one can take it away from you. They may take the written Word from you, but they cannot take what you have hidden in your heart. Wisdom is a gift from God. The two great powers in the world are the spoken and the written Word.
Build each other up in the most holy faith. When friends get together and study the Word of God, it builds them up, and brings perfect peace to them. The Psalms are like warm oil pouring over you. They bring such a peace to all who hear them.
Have you ever sat down and just read the words in the beautiful hymns? The people who wrote them were under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. They have such Truth of the Word in them. They are comforting, because they tell truth in a melodious way. Singing this type of spiritual music makes a sweet, sweet sound in God’s ear. Singing builds up the spirit of man.
The grace spoken of here, is a thanksgiving for the free gift of grace that God has given us. Notice, this singing is not for performing, this is sung reverently to the Lord.
Colossians 3:17 “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, [do] all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”
“Do all in the name of the Lord Jesus”: This simply means to act consistently with who He is and what He wants (see note on 1 Cor. 10:31).
The beneficial influence produced by the indwelling word of Christ is not only to affect public and private worship (verse 16), but it is also to control all areas of a Christian’s life.
When I see this Scripture, I think of the blood that was applied to the thumb of the right hand of the priests and the high priest. To me, this meant that everything we put our hand to do must be dedicated to God. Whatever our task is in life, we must do our work as unto the Lord. We must not only hear and speak the Word, but we must do it as well.
We should apply the teachings of the Word of God to our everyday tasks. The best sermon that everyone can preach is the way they conduct their daily lives. Every task should be done with thanksgiving in our heart. We thank the Father for sending His Son to save us. We thank the Son (Jesus) for actually saving us.
Verses 3:18 – 4:1: Paul discusses the new self’s relationships to others. This passage is also a brief parallel to (Eph. 5:19 – 6:9; see notes there).
Colossians 3:18 “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.”
“Submit yourselves” (see notes on Eph. 5:22-23). The Greek verb denotes willingly putting oneself under someone or something (Luke 2:51; 10:17, 20; Rom. 8:7; 13:1, 5; 1 Cor. 15:27-28; Eph. 1:22).
Wifely submission cannot be forced; it must come from her own free will. “As it is fit in the Lord” means that the wife’s submission to her husband is proper in her relationship with Christ: submission rendered her husband is submission rendered to Christ.
The church is the bride of Christ. The entire church must be submitted to the Lord Jesus Christ. Husbands and wives on the earth are a shadow of the heavenly scene. We see in this, that the wife and husband are one flesh, as the church and the Lord Jesus Christ are one Spirit.
The wife is not to work against her husband, especially seeing they are one flesh. The wife is the helpmeet of her husband. His welfare should be of utmost importance. In the flesh, the wife should submit to her husband. The only time that this is not so, is if it causes her to fall away from God.
Colossians 3:19 “Husbands, love [your] wives, and be not bitter against them.”
“Love” (see notes on Eph. 5:25-29). This is a call for the highest form of love which is rendered selflessly (Gen. 24:67; Eph. 5:22-28; 1 Pet. 3:7).
“Be not bitter”: The form of this Greek verb is better translated “stop being bitter,” or “do not have the habit of being bitter.” Husbands must not be harsh or angrily resentful toward their wives.
The duty of husbands is to “love your wives.” The Greek word for love is agapao, the same affection with which “God so loved the world” (John 3:16). This type of love (1 Cor. 13; 1 John 4:10), is a willing and sacrificial giving of oneself for the benefit of another, without thought of return.
“Be not bitter against them” might be translated, “Do not be harsh toward them.” The husband who loves his wife will not be rude, unkind, or cruel toward her. This implies that wifely submission is gained in part by the husband’s love.
The love spoken of here is a love like Jesus had for the church. This love is a protection for the lesser vessel.
Colossians 3:20 “Children, obey [your] parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.”
“In all things” (see notes on Eph. 6:4). Also translated “provoke.” This word has the connotation of not stirring up or irritating.
“This is well-pleasing unto the Lord”. In most manuscripts (including the oldest), the Greek reads, “well-pleasing in the Lord.” That is, obedience to parental authority is pleasing to the Lord in the child’s relationship with Him. The obedience given to parents is obedience given to Christ.
Again, we see that this obedience of the child for their parents shadows the obedience of God’s children for Him.
1 Samuel 15:22 “And Samuel said, Hath the LORD [as great] delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey [is] better than sacrifice, [and] to hearken than the fat of rams.”
Obedience to an earthly parent is a type of respect, or honor. Honor thy Father and Mother is one of the Ten Commandments.
Obedience, has a side benefit. All the regulations that God put on mankind were for mankind’s benefit. The regulations that parents put on their children are for the child’s benefit as well. We may not see the benefit when it is happening, but it is beneficial. Do yourself a favor, obey your parents.
Colossians 3:21 “Fathers, provoke not your children [to anger], lest they be discouraged.”
“Provoke” or exasperate (see notes on Eph. 6:4). Also exasperate is translated “provoke”. This word has the connotation of not stirring up or irritating.
All correction should be in a loving and kind way. Constant screaming at a youngster sends him, or her, the message that you do not love them. It also has a way of downing their self-esteem. If my dad does not believe in me, who will?
Verses 3:22 – 4:1 (see notes on Eph. 6:5-9). Paul upholds the duties of slave and master, of which the modern parallel is the duties of employee and employer. Scripture never advocates slavery, but recognizes it as an element of ancient society that could have been more beneficial if slaves and masters had treated each other properly.
Here, Paul followed Christ’s example and used slavery as a motif for spiritual instruction, likening the believer to one who is a slave and servant to Jesus Christ and seeing service to an earthly master as a way to serve the Lord.
Colossians 3:22 “Servants, obey in all things [your] masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:”
“Servants” (see note on Romans 1:1).
“Eyeservice” is work done only when the master is watching. Christian slaves were to work hard even when their owners were absent (see notes on Eph. 6:6). This refers to working only when the master is watching, rather than recognizing the Lord is always watching, and how our work concerns Him (verses 23-24; 1 Tim. 6:1-2; Titus 2:9-10; 1 Pet. 2: 18-21).
“Singleness of heart” means “a sincere disposition.”
Jesus is Lord of all. We are His servants. The verse above is a shadow of the fact that Jesus is Lord. Jesus is Lord in the spirit, and this verse is speaking of the master who is lord over your flesh. This was written when there were slaves, but it still applies today toward the people you are working for.
Employees, give the man who hired you your loyalty. He deserves a full day of work for the pay he has given you. When you are on his payroll, you must do as he asks you. The only time it is not alright to do what he asks you, is if you resign from the job or he asks you to do something which is against God’s commandments and Statutes. Loyalty is very important, when you are working for someone.
You must do the work the way they want it done. Once you have made an agreement for the wages you will work for, fill the contract. You must keep your word. The boss must keep his word too. He has a boss also. Jesus is looking at the way we conduct our lives. We must deal fairly with each other.
Colossians 3:23 “And whatsoever ye do, do [it] heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;”
“Do it heartily” means the slave is to perform his slave duties “wholeheartedly, doing the best job he can with all his strength. A slave could be enthusiastic in carrying out his menial tasks because they were done, not so much for his earthly master (“unto men”), but for his heavenly Master (“to the Lord”).
It really does not matter what our work is in this world. This is the task that God has chosen for us to do. Do it as unto the Lord. It is the Lord who makes one man a doctor, and another man a porter. Do your job well, whatever it is. You will not be judged by the other man’s job. You will be judged by what you did with the talents God gave you.
Verses 24-25: “Reward of the inheritance” (see note on Eph. 6:7-8). The Lord ensures the believer that he will receive a just, eternal compensation for his efforts (Rev. 20:12-13), even if his earthly boss or master does not compensate fairly (verse 25). God deals with obedience and disobedience impartially (Acts 10:34; Gal. 6:7). Christians are not to presume on their faith in order to justify disobedience to an authority or employer (Philemon 18).
Colossians 3:24 “Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”
“The reward of the inheritance” (or “the reward which is salvation”): The fact that Christian slaves will receive salvation from the Lord rather than from men verifies the assertion (in verse 23), that they serve Christ, not their masters.
Our inheritance in heaven is not determined by the wealth we had on this earth. We should be laying up treasures in heaven. We are all in the service of the Lord. He has placed us in the body where we can be the most useful. If everyone was a scientist, there would be no one to cook our food. You can easily see that each of us has a job to do for the Lord, and that is the job we need to be doing.
1 Peter 1:3-4 “Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,” “To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,”
Seeing He has prepared all of this, it is a little thing to serve Him here.
Colossians 3:25 “But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.”
Jesus is the judge of all the earth. He judges us not as groups, but one at a time. What you do with your life, is up to you. God will not force himself upon you. You have a free will. You can choose to do wrong, and reject Jesus and His plan for your life. If you do, there is payment for the decision to do wrong, just as there was an inheritance for those who followed Jesus.
The difference is, the reward for a disobedient life is an eternity in hell. Jesus is a just God. He gives us the reward we chose. It does not matter whether you were the boss, or the worker, judgment is just. Treat other people as if Jesus was watching everything you do, because He is.
Colossians Chapter 3 Continued Questions
- Let the _________ of God rule in your hearts.
- What kind of peace did Job have in his troubles?
- Let the _____ of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.
- Teaching and admonishing one another in _________ and _______ and __________ _______, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
- Who is the Word of God?
- What are the two great powers in the world?
- What makes a sweet sound in the ear of God?
- We must do all in word and deed unto the ________.
- What was applied to the thumb of the right hand of the priest to show the work he did was dedicated to God?
- We must not only hear and speak the Word, but we must __ __, as well.
- Wives, __________ yourselves unto your own husbands.
- Who is the bride of Christ?
- Husbands and wives on the earth are one _______.
- Jesus and His church are one _________.
- What kind of love is spoken of in verse 19?
- What is a side benefit of obeying parents?
- What can we apply verse 22 to today?
- Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the ________.
- Who have an inheritance with the Lord waiting for them?
- Who is Judge of all the earth?
- If you choose to do wrong and reject Jesus, what is your reward?