Beware! (Colossians 2:8-15)
Our text today deals with the terrible danger of being spiritually deceived. We live in an age that is well supplied with impersonators, pitch men and con artists. I once heard of a farmer whose horses kept slobbering over everything. He saw an advertisement in a farm magazine offering a cure for this for a fee of $20. He scraped together the money and wrote asking for the secret. In return he received a very thin envelope containing a single sheet of paper, on which were written the words, "Teach your horses to spit."
24 Sep 2018
Put on the New (Colossians 3:12-17)
There was a popular song some years ago, sung by Bing Crosby and others of my generation, that went like this: You've got to accentuate the positive, Eliminate the negative, Latch on to the affirmative, And don't mess with Mr. In-between. Those lyrics are an accurate description of the passage we have before us in Colossians, chapter 3, beginning with verse 12. Listen to these affirmative words: "Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you." (Colossians 3:12)
21 Sep 2018
The Overflowing Life (Colossians 2:1-7)
The end of a year always brings news articles that highlight the events of the past year. I read this week an article entitled "The Most Boring People of 1986." Some may place me in that category, but at least I was not included in this article. A group calling themselves "The Boring Institute of New Jeremiahsey" picks the most boring people of the year every December. You may be interested to know that in 1984 Michael Jackson was the "Yawn of the Year," primarily because of his over-exposure in the media. In 1985 it was Dr. Ruth Westheimer, who, as this article says, "debunked the cherished myth that talking about sex is always interesting." The winner this year was Joan Rivers. "Her rival talk show," the article says, "reveals the genius of Johnny Carson."
25 Sep 2018
The Things that can Ruin your Faith (Colossians 2:16-23)
I should like to read to you the introduction to Colossians in the Student Bible, a new and exciting version whose notes are written by our good friends, Philip Yancey and Timothy Stafford:You see them in strange outfits on street corners, chanting phrases with too many vowels and punctuating the chants with a noisy tambourine. Or in airports, thrusting books or flowers into your face. Or in California, all over California. You think of them as crazy cults populated by misfits. Then one day you hear about a friend of yours. She seemed normal until suddenly, without warning, she snapped. Her parents searched desperately, even hiring private detectives to help get her back. They found her surrounded by allies, with a new name, a new hairstyle and, so it seemed, a new brain. She stared at them with clear eyes and told them they were missing out on the most wonderful experience of life. She had joined a cult. Cults come in all varieties, often with exotic names like Hare Krishna or Urantia, or the Church of Scientology. They demand much from their members: a lifetime of discipline and absolute loyalty, and they also promise much in return: the pathway to a secret, hidden knowledge, available only to those who follow them.
23 Sep 2018
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True Human Potential (Colossians 3:1-11)
In our last study in Colossians we saw the siren song of theological error that was threatening to deprive the Colossian Christians of all vitality and vigor in their faith. And today, two thousand years later, the same error, under the guise of the New Age Movement, is luring thousands into spiritual slavery by offering them the secret of fulfilled human potential. It is sad to see these ideas being propagated by celebrity evangelists who are enticing people into concepts and mysteries that will only leave them disillusioned and enslaved.
22 Sep 2018