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

The Preeminence of Christ In the Church
Col. 1:18-19

18 He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. 19 For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, NAS

Introduction
I believe in the church. I believe in it's ministry, importance and authority. Recently I was asked what I would have done if while in the baptistry asking the congregation to vote on a candidate the church said "no we do not accept this person as a candidate

I replied I would have ask the candidate to wait until we checked this matter out further. I believe in the church's authority to baptize. I always say "by the authority given to be in this church I baptize you in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Today I want to Emphasize the Preeminence of Christ in the Church. Christ Is Preeminent as the Head of the Church.

He is the Crowned Head

He is the Celebrated Head

He is the Complete Head
 
 

1.    Preeminence As the . . Crowned Head of the Church. v 18 a


A.    He Is Crowned Head of the . . Celestial Church.
            ". . . "He is also head of the body, . . . "

        1.    The proper terminology I believe would be the Body of Christ.
        2.    Every saved person is part of the body of Christ.
        3.    Every saved person should be baptized into a local church. One that is Comprehendible.

B.    He Is Crowned Head of the . . Comprehended Church.
            ". . . the church; . . . "

        1.    For all practical discussions the Comprehended Church is the church we know.
        2.    This is where God's People center the base of their work.

Illustration
A man wanted to sing in the choir without being active in the church. He did not want to stay for preaching attend Sunday School or anything. The pastor asked him where he belonged to church and he said I am a member of the Celestial Church.

The pastor told him to go sing in the Celestial Choir.

Application

Where is your church membership? How long have you attended here and not joined? Have you followed the Lord in believers baptism?

You may be a part of the Church Celestial but to really count in this world you need to stand up for Christ and be a part of the Comprehended Church
 
 

2.    Preeminence As the . . Celebrated Head of the Church. v 18 b


A.    He is the Celebrated Head As The . . Resurrected Lord.
            ". . . and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, . . . "

        1.    Resurrected from the . . Beginning.
        2.    Resurrected from the . . Burial ground.

B.    He is the Celebrated Head As The . . Ruling Lord.
        ". . . so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.

        1. The Future of "First Place In Everything"    Acts 2:35-36
35 Till I make Your enemies Your footstool." ' 36"Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ." NKJV

        1.    The Present of "First Place In Everything"
        2.    "What would Jesus Do" Is very significant.
        3.    Jesus Is Lord.     Acts 2:36
"Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ." NKJV

Illustration
A little over a week ago I sign a contract for a different car. Christa and I had both decided what kind we wanted and I had in my mine a color choice and the kind of wheels I wanted.

The second car lot we looked at they had the kind of car the color and the wheels I wanted. We took it for a drive and when I got back to the dealership the salesman said I will make you a deal on that car. I said "if you make a deal you have a sale." As we went into his office I made an offer and he said oh not we couldn't sell for that. We finally got agreed on a price that was pretty good and I signed the papers.

On the way home I got an uneasy peace about having that car. It continued and so I took it back. They allowed me to do that and I thanked them for their kindness.

My son in law's father has the kind of car I want but it is newer than I thought I wanted to purchase but I got a peace about that purchase and the difference was doing what God gave me peace to do. The practical application is Jesus Is Lord.

Illustration EVANGELISM (Josh McDowell)
An executive hirer, a "head-hunter" who goes out and hirescorporation executives for other firms, once told me, "When I get an executive that I'm trying to hire for someone else, I like to disarm him. I offer him a drink, take my coat off, then my vest, undo my tie, throw up my feet and talk about baseball, football, family, whatever, until he's all relaxed. Then, when I think I've got him relaxed, I lean over, look him square in the eye and say, "What's your purpose in life?"

It's amazing how top executives fall apart at that question. "Well, I was interviewing this fellow the other day, had him all disarmed, with my feet up on his desk, talking about football. Then I leaned up and said, 'What's your purpose in life, Bob?'

And he said, without blinking an eye, 'To go to heaven and take as many people with me as I can.' For the first time in my career I was speechless." What's your purpose in life, my friend?

Application

Celebrate the Resurrected and Ruling Lord by sharing your faith.
 
 

3.    Preeminence As the . . Complete Head of the Church. v 19


            For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, NAS

A. He is the Complete Head By The . . Father's Decision..
        ". . . For it was the Father's good pleasure . . . "

        1.    That Jesus is the complete revelation of God is God's Decision.

Illustration
Karl Barth was asked "Didn't God reveal Himself in some religions other than Christianity?" Dr. Barth replied "He did not reveal himself in Christianity. He revealed Himself Only In Christ."

B. He is the Complete Head By The . . Fulness Displayed.
        ". . . for all the fullness to dwell in Him, . . . "

Illustration JESUS:
Christianity is Jesus. God didn't drop a scroll of theology from heaven. He came Himself. Finishing the course on the New Testament, a Greek professor told his class: "You have studied Christ himself, the whole Christ, all of Christ. When you study the Bible, you are studying the Lord himself. For all we know of the Lord is encompassed in these sacred pages." Believers study to understand Jesus.

Application

John 14:9-10 KJV Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father? 10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

Heb 1:3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, NASU
 

Conclusion        Christ, Lordship Of: She Honored The Lord Of All

When Queen Victoria had just ascended her throne she went, as is the custom of Royalty, to hear "The Messiah" rendered. She had been instructed as to her conduct by those who knew, and was told that she must not rise when the others stood at the singing of the Hallelujah Chorus.

When that magnificent chorus was being sung and the singers were shouting "Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth," she sat with great difficulty. It seemed as if she would rise in spite of the custom of kings and queens, but finally when they came to that part of the chorus where with a shout they proclaim Him King of kings suddenly the young queen rose and stood with bowed head, as if she would take her own crown from off her head and cast it at His feet. Let us make Him King and every day be loyal to Him. This is the secret of peace. -- J. Wilbur Chapman

The Preeminence of Christ In the Church

He is the Crowned Head,    He is the Celebrated Head,    He is the Complete Head