Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

Paul's Letter to the Colossians and Us.
Col. 1:1-2 NASU

1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, 2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are at Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father.

Introduction
On one occasion, the Italian sculptor Agostino d'Antonio worked diligently on a large piece of marble trying to determine what he would do with it. Unable to produce his desired masterpiece, he lamented, "I can do nothing with it." Other sculptors also worked this difficult piece of marble, but to no avail.

Michelangelo discovered the stone and the problems the other sculptors were having. He studied the large piece of marble and mapped out his plan. Four years later the world beheld one of the greatest pieces of work anyone had ever sculpted -Michelangelo's "David."

Michelangelo began his work on the colossal figure of David in 1501, and by 1504 the sculpture stood 14 ft. 3 in. tall and was placed outside the Palazzo Vecchio. Michelangelo kept the big picture in mind throughout his four years of labor and it was the big picture that gave him the endurance and vision necessary to complete such a monumental task.
 
 

1.    Paul's Letter . . Substantiates His Call to the Colossians and Us. v 1



"Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, "

A.    Substantiates the . . Apostleship of His Call. v 1 a
            ". . . "Paul, an apostle . . . "

Introduction
Have you noticed how much Paul repeats and emphasizes His Call from God. Repetition is a great teacher. Some of you have told me the Lady Bears basketball player Jackie Stiles shoots 1,000 baskets a day in practice. Paul repeated information about his call.

NT:652 apostolos (ap-os'-tol-os); from NT:649; a delegate; specially, an ambassador of the Gospel; officially a commissioner of Christ ["apostle"] (with miraculous powers): KJV-apostle, messenger, he that is sent. (Biblesoft's Strong's)

Galatians 2:8 (for He who effectually worked for Peter in his apostleship to the circumcised effectually worked for me also to the Gentiles), NASU

Acts 1:21-22 21"Therefore it is necessary that of the men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us -- 22 beginning with the baptism of John until the day that He was taken up from us -- one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection." NASU
 

B.    Substantiates the . . Authority of His Call. v 1 b
            ". . . of Jesus Christ by the will of God, . . . "
        1.    Paul Write concerning the Will of God In the Matter.
        2.    Can we today say an experience is valid because we think God told us to do it?
        3.    Must agree with the testimony of Scripture.
        4.    Seminary Professors must tell students from time to time they seem to have miss interpreted
                the call of God.
        5.    Exceptions like David Ring etc..
        6.    Who Does God Call To Be Pastors?
                a.    Women called to Pastor?
                b.    Divorced People?
                c.    Those with poor reputation?
                d.    Womanizer Called to be a Pastor?
                e.    God Calls in agreement with His Word.

C.    Substantiates the . . Affirmation of His Call. v 1 c
            ". . . and Timothy our brother, "

        1.    Timothy was an Affirmation of God's Call in his life.
        2.    Distinction between Timothy and Paul
                a.    Paul an apostle, Timothy is not.
                b.    Timothy is submissive to the difference.

Illustration
So popular and effective was Campbell Morgan's ministry that he was given all kinds of offers from many different places and people. John Wannamaker, the great merchant of Philadelphia, offered to build Morgan a million dollar church if he would become its pastor. Morgan turned him down, something the wealthy Wanamaker was not accustomed to in his dealings with people. "I am God's man," said Morgan. "If I did that I would become John Wanamaker's man."

Some of you have told me you read that Jackie Stiles the Basket Ball All-American from the Lady bears shoots 1,000 baskets a day.

Application

Have you every thought about God's call for your life. It is sad that many never think about the call of God until they are later in their life. Regardless of your age if God calls he will provide a ministry.
 
 

2.    Paul's Letter . . Salutes the Colossians and Us. v 2 a



                    "To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are at Colossae:. . . " NASU

A.    Salutes the . . People. v 2 a 1
        ". . . saints and faithful brethren.

        1.    One group "the saints (I mean) faithful brethren
        2.    We should Likewise be called saints and faithful brethren.

B.    Salutes the . . Position. v 2 a 2
        ". . . in Christ. v 2 a 2

        1. Saints are persons in Christ.

C. Salutes the . . Placing. v 2 a 3
            ". . . who are at Colossae:. . . "

        1.    A Particular Group of Christians
        2.    Paul Knew about them.
        3.    God knew about them.
        4.    God knows about us and the particular problems we face living in Mountain View.
                a. This is a good place to live especially compared to our world.
                b.    Ships in Harbor are safe. That's not what ships are made for.

Illustration
The unique "water beetle" weaves a bubble of air and can live in murky dirty water.

Application

How do you and I get this bubble of fresh air in this sinful world?

    Prayer,   Bible Study,   Witnessing.
 
 

3.    Paul's Letter . . Stimulates the Colossians and Us. v 2 b


                    ". . . Grace to you and peace from God our Father." NASU
                    ". . . from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.". . . KJV

A.    The Stimulation from . . Grace. v 2 b 1
            ". . . Grace to. . . "

        1.    Reminder of Grace
        2.    Requesting of Grace.
        3.    A Greek Greeting.   (like shalom is a Hebrew greeting Grace could be a Greek Greeting)

Illustration
When Billy Graham was driving through a small southern town, he was stopped by a policeman and charged with speeding. Graham admitted his quilt, but was told by the officer that he would have to appear in court. The judge asked, "Guilty, or not guilty?" When Graham pleaded guilty, the judge replied, "That'll be ten dollars -- a dollar for every mile you went over the limit."

Suddenly the judge recognized the famous minister. "You have violated the law," he said. "The fine must be paid--but I am going to pay it for you." He took a ten dollar bill from his own wallet, attached it to the ticket, and then took Graham out and bought him a steak dinner! "That," said Billy Graham, "is how God treats repentant sinners!" Progress Magazine, December 14, 1992.
 

B.    The Stimulation from . . Peace. v 2 b 2
            ". . . and peace from God our Father." NASU

        1.    Peace in the midst of turmoil.
        2.    Peace the world can not give or understand.
        3.    Peace is a bi-product.
                a. Joy may not give happiness but always gives Hope

C.    The Stimulation from . . Our Source. v 2 b 3
            ". . . from God our Father." NASU
            ". . . and the Lord Jesus Christ.". . . KJV

        1.    The Source of Our Stimulation comes from God

Illustration
Peace is such a precious jewel, that I would give anything for it but truth. Matthew Henry.

Peace consists not in the absence of danger but in the presence of God.
 

Application

James 4:7-8 a 7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. NASU

Submit unto God, Resist the Devil, Draw Near to God.
 

Duke University did a study on "peace of mind." Factors found to contribute greatly to emotional and mental stability are:  (I list only part of them)

1) the absence of suspicion and resentment. Nursing a grudge was a major factor in unhappiness.

2) Not living in the past. An unwholesome preoccupation with old mistakes and failures leads to depression.

5) Refuse to indulge in self-pity when life hands you a raw deal. Accept the fact that nobody gets through life without some sorrow and misfortune.

6) Cultivate the old-fashioned virtues--love, humor, compassion and loyalty.

8) Find something bigger than yourself to believe in. Self-centered egotistical people score lowest in any test for measuring happiness.