Discipline, Denial, Long Term Objective
Paul is in prison in Rome for preaching the good news. From this location he writes a letter to the church at Colosse. It’s a reminder to pursue what you want most (a relationship with God and things eternal) and not what you may desire now (leisure, “toys”, pleasure).
The regular print is scripture or stolen commentary (the notes), italics are my commentary. Read what you will. We all enjoy the freedom of choice.
1 – Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 – Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 – For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 – When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
3:1-2 Setting our hearts on things above means striving to put heaven’s priorities into daily practice. Setting our minds on things above means concentrating on the eternal rather than the temporal.
[Christian men are called to be prophet, priest, servant king, provider & protector – tough charge]
3:2-3 “For you died” means that we should have as little desire for improper worldly pleasures as a dead person would have. The Christian’s real home is where Christ lives (John 14:2-3 follow up verse).
2 – My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3 – And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.
3:2-3 This truth provides a different perspective on our lives here on earth. To “set your minds on things above” means to look at life from God’s perspective and to seek what he desires. This provides the antidote to materialism; we gain the proper perspective on material goods when we take God’s view of them.
[Nothing wrong with “toys” so long as we recognize that they are indeed “toys” and that they are temporary]
3:2-3 It also provides the antidote to sensuality. By seeking what Christ desires, we have the power to break our obsession with pleasure and leisure activities.
Colossians 3:23 – Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.
Colossians 3:2-3 But it also provides the antidote to empty religiosity because following Christ means loving and serving in this world. Regard the world around you as God does; then you will live in harmony with him.
3:3 What does it mean that a believer’s life is “hidden with Christ”? Hidden means “concealed and safe.” This is not only a future hope but an accomplished fact right now.
Our service and conduct do not earn our salvation, but they are results of our salvation. Take heart that your salvation is sure, and live each day for Christ.
3:4 Christ gives us power to live for him now, and he gives us hope for the future—he will return.
In the rest of this chapter Paul explains how Christians should act now in order to be prepared for Christ’s return. Take a quick look.
As is often the case, bible teachings that address the eternal, can very easily be applied to this worlds goals. After all, many of us don’t go exercise in the gloom because it is what we want to do “Right Now”. But if our long term objective is to be healthy, fit, flexible and to enjoy longevity – and perhaps some vanity too, just sayin’ – we must battle what we want now (another hour of shuteye, to stay in a warm house, a cup of coffee) for the much larger goal of what we want most (health, longevity, fitness, etc.).
Figure out what you want most. Next figure out Why you want that. If you can do this you will be ahead of 95% of the people in this world. More importantly, you will have armed yourself to battle what you
And with this knowledge, you will be able to win the battle of what you want now for the greater goal of what you want most with increasing frequency.
Don’t give up what you want most for what you want now!
PS – Have a nice day.