B.C.P. Trinity 24 : Colossians 1:3-12
I would like you to look at one another. Even at this time in the morning ! Now say a little prayer thanking God for one another and asking that we would all grow in our faith.
This is what Paul is doing at the start of his letter to the church at Colossae.
He thanks God for :
Their faith. This faith is grounded in Jesus verse 4. It is a free gift given by God, verse 12.
Their hope which is laid up in heaven. This was heard as part of the gospel. Verse 5. Passed on to them by Epaphras.
Their love. This is the fruit of their faith. It is a love in the Spirit. Prompted by the Holy Spirit. It is shown first, and primarily in the love that the saints have for one another. The word for Saints refers to all believers. So you and I are Saints. perfect in God's eyes through what Jesus has done for us on the cross.
Faith, hope, and love. Gifts from God that Paul gives thanks for.
From this thanksgiving he goes on to pray for them.
He prays that they will be filled with the knowledge of God's will.
The Colossians were being attacked by false teachers. It appears that some of their teaching was false teaching about Christ, because Paul spends a lot of this letter teaching about the person of Christ.
Once we know what God's will is then we can go on and do it.
Paul prays that will result in a number of things :-
"being fruitful in every good work" verse 10, doing things God's way.
"increasing in the knowledge of God" verse 10, not just an intellectual exercise, but one born out of a relationship with Christ.
"being strengthened with all might" verse 11. This strength comes from God's Spirit and leads to patience and long-suffering. That patience and long-suffering are grounded in strength, rather than weakness is illuminating. It counters the notion that you are a wimp if you are like this. This is also linked to being joyful. Three of the fruit of the Spirit.
"giving thanks to the Father" verse 12. We have so much to be thankful for. God has sent his Son to be crucified for us. He has revealed this to us and enabled us to respond. He has given us faith, hope, and love, the knowledge of his will, and the Holy Spirit to help us live our lives for him.
It is really good to start everyday by thanking God for what he has done for us. Perhaps by singing a hymn of thanksgiving. Hymnos = song of praise.
We have so much to give thanks for personally, and in the faith God has given to others. So let us be thankful to God for these things. And pray that we may all grow in our love, knowledge, and discipleship of him