The Identity and Sufficiency of Christ

Great is the mystery of godliness: He who was revealed in the flesh, was vindicated in the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

–1 Timothy 3:16

The Bible says if you’re a Christian, you might not have the nicest house or the newest car on the block, but you are rich because of what Jesus Christ has done for you. Paul said in Colossians 2:2 that there is wealth that comes from “the full assurance of understanding.”

So what specifically are you supposed to be assured of?

To combat the heresies being brought into the church, Paul wanted the Colossian Christians to be assured of the identity of Christ. Look at verse 2: “The full assurance of understanding [results] in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself.” Jesus Christ is God’s mystery. In 1 Timothy 3:16, Paul wrote, “Great is the mystery of godliness: He who was revealed in the flesh.” The mystery is that God poured all of Himself into a tiny embryo. He became flesh and dwelled among us (John 1:14). That’s who Jesus is.

If you accept that Jesus Christ is God, as He claimed to be, then you have to embrace everything He said:

  • You have to believe He was telling the truth when He said, “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
  • You have to believe He was telling the truth when He said, “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places. . . . If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself” (14:1–3).
  • You have to believe He was telling the truth when He said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me” (v. 6).

That is what it means to be assured of the identity of Christ.

Paul also wanted the Colossians to be convinced of the sufficiency of Christ. In Colossians 2:3, he wrote, “In [Christ] are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” The word “hidden” was a jab at the Gnostic heretics. They believed they had hidden books that only those of superior intellect could understand. Paul was saying, “Baloney! The wisdom and knowledge you need are found in the Lord Jesus Christ.” When you come to Him, it’s like you’ve stumbled on a gold mine. Everything you need for this life and the next life is found in Jesus Christ.

***

Today’s devotion is adapted from “The Value of Assurance” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2011.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org.

 

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