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BC Weekly Digest
Monday, January 5 1998

In this issue:

	Colossians 2:13,14
	Colossians 2:15
	Colossians 2:14
	Colossians 2:16,17

Colossians 2:13,14

Colossians 2:13,14 (OPV)
13 And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the 
uncircumcision of your flesh, He made alive together 
with Him, having forgiven all our traspesses,
14 having blotted out the document against us in 
ordinances, which was contrary to us, and He has taken 
it away, nailing it to the cross.
2:13 "Dead in your trespasses"
  Notice that there are different kinds of death and 
different kinds of life. Although physically alive, 
the Colossians were dead spiritually before they were
made alive with Christ.
  The same idea is stated in the letter to the 
Ephesians: "And you [did he make alive] when ye were 
dead through your trespasses and sins, wherein ye once
walked according to the course of this world, according
to the prince of the powers of the air, of the spirit 
that now worketh in the sons of disobedience" 
(Ephesians 2:1,2). "...even when we were dead through 
our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by 
grace have ye been saved), and raised us up with him, 
and made us to sit with him in the heavenly [places], 
in Christ Jesus" (Ephesians 2"5,6 ASV).
  God warned Adam and Eve that they would die if they 
disobeyed His command. This shows the seriousness of 
sin. It separates us from God who is the source of all 
life. They who rebel against God deserve to die. "For 
the wages of sin is death; but the free gift of God is 
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 6:23).
2:13 "Made alive together with Him"
  God's gracious gift of eternal life is IN Christ. We 
all deserve to die "for all have sinned, and fall short 
of the glory of Christ" (Romans 3:23), but if we believe 
in Christ, and are buried with Him, and are raised with 
Him, we are also made alive with Him.
2:13 "Having forgiven all our trespasses"
  Forgiveness is our only hope. Our sins have separated 
us from the Source of Life. Our only means of 
forgiveness is the sacrifice of Christ "in whom we have 
redemption, the forgiveness of our sins" (Colossians 
1:14 OPV).
2:14 "Having blotted out the document against us"
  In his second letter to the Corinthians, Paul calls 
the law of Moses "in letters engraved on stone" an 
administration of death (2 Cor 3:7) and an 
administration of condemnation (2 Cor 3:9). Although 
the law itself was holy and good (Romans 7:12) it 
resulted in death because of sin (Romans 7:13). Even 
the most faithful through the centuries have never 
accomplished perfect observance of the ordinances God 
gave them.
2:14 "He has taken it away, nailing it to the cross"
  This is beautiful imagry. Christ has removed the 
formal writ of condemnation. He Himself fulfilled the 
law, He lived without sin, which qualified Him to bear 
our punishment: "who his own self bare our sins in his 
body upon the tree, that we, having died unto sins, 
might live unto righteousness; by whose stripes ye 
were healed" (1 Peter 2:24).
  "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law, 
having become a curse for us; for it is written, 
cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree" 
(Galatians 3:13).
  That document which was "against" us - it condemned 
us to death because of our sins - is GONE! It has been 
taken away. God nailed it to the cross.
Roy Davison


Colossians 2:15

Colossians 2:15 (OPV)
15 Having disarmed the principalities and the powers, He 
exposed them openly, triumphing over them thereby.
2:15 "The principalities and the powers"
  We have already learned that all principalities and 
powers were created in, through and for Christ (1:16) and 
that Christ is the head of all principalities and powers 
(2:10). The ruling forces were created by God.
  When God created man, for example, He said "let them 
have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the 
fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the 
earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon 
the earth" (Genesis 1:26 KJV). Man has rebelled against 
God and often misuses the authority God has given him.
  Similarly, although few details have been revealed, 
there are forces in the heavenly realms that have rebelled 
against God. The redemptive work of Christ on earth not 
only offers salvation to man but also brings about a 
complete victory over the rebelious forces of evil and 
brings glory to God among those who serve Him.
  No principalities or powers can separate us from the 
love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 
8:38,39). After His resurrection, the position of Jesus 
is "far above all rule, and authority, and power, and 
dominion" (Ephesians 1:20,21). Now, with Christ as head 
(Ephesians 1:22) through the church, the manifold wisdom 
of God is made known to the principalities and the 
powers in the heavenly places (Ephesians 3:10). Although 
Christ has gained the ultimate victory through His 
sacrifice and resurrection, the forces of evil will 
continue their efforts until the consumation of this age:
"For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but 
against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the 
spiritual [hosts] of wickedness in the heavenly [places]"
(Ephesians 6:12).
2:15 "He exposed them openly"
  Nothing in the history of the world has revealed the 
true nature of evil as effectively as the way the Son of 
God was treated when He came to earth. Nor has anything 
else demonstrated so thoroughly that good triumphs over 
evil through faith even in the face of seeming defeat.
  Evil tries to hide. "For everyone who practices evil 
hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his 
works be exposed" (John 3:20 RD).
  Like Christ, we too are to expose evil. "And do not 
participate in the unfruitful works of darkness, but 
expose them instead, for it is shameful even to talk 
about the things they do in secret, but everything that 
is exposed by the light is revealed, and everything that
is revealed is light (Ephesians 5:11-14 RD).
2:15 "Triumphing over them thereby"
  Christ has overcome the world (John 16:33). He 
overcame evil with good (compare Romans 12:21). God leads 
us in triumph in Christ (2 Corinthians 2:14). If we 
overcome by remaining faithful until death, we will sit 
down with Christ on His throne, as He overcame and sat 
down with His Father on His throne (Revelation 3:21). 
The only way we can overcome Satan is by the blood of the 
Lamb (Revelation 12:11). The Lamb, who is the Lord of 
lords and the King of kings, triumphs over all forces of 
evil. The called, and chosen, and faithful who are with 
Him, also triumph with Him (Revelation 17:14).
Roy Davison


Colossians 2:14

The question has been asked, "That which is "nailed to
the cross", is it the old law or rather is it the sins that we
bore before Christ redeemed us?

In the context of the verse, that which was "nailed to
the cross" was the old law of Moses. That which was
blotted out was the "handwriting of ordinances" which
is a reference to the ordinances of the law of Moses.
Ephesians 2:14-16 is an excellent commentary on
Col. 2:14. In verse 15 of that passage, we are told
that Christ "abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the
law of commandments contained in ordinances." (KJV)
This explains that ordinances is a reference to the law
of Moses, and that is what was "nailed to the cross."
This marked the end of the necessity of keeping the
ordinances contained in the law of Moses. When
Christ died, he fulfilled the old law, took it out of the
way, and brought in a new one. This new law was
revealed on the day of Pentecost when Peter preached
the first gospel sermon (Acts 2). The bringing in of a
new law was one of the purposes of the death of Christ.
Heb. 2:16-17 says, "For where a testament is, there
must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
For a testament is of force after men are dead:
otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator
liveth. (KJV) Therefore, Christ died to take away
the law of Moses and bring into effect his new law
which is the gospel.

It should also be noted that even though this is the
meaning of Col. 2:14, it is true that Christ's death
on the cross did take away the sins of those who
lived before the cross. Heb. 9:15 states, "And for
this cause he is the mediator of the new testament,
that by means of death, for the redemption of the
transgressions that were under the first testament,
they which are called might receive the promise of
eternal inheritance. (KJV) So, another accomplishment
of the death of Christ was the forgiveness of sins to
those who lived under the law of Moses. It also made
the forgiveness of sins available to those of us who
live during the gospel age.
Lonnie Woodruff


Colossians 2:16,17

Colossians 2:16,17 (OPV)
16 Therefore, let no one judge you in eating and drinking,
or concerning a feast day or a new moon or a sabbath day, 
17 things which were a shadow of something coming, but the
[actual] body belongs to Christ.  
2:16 "Let no one judge you in eating and drinking"
  Jesus declared all foods to be clean (Mark 7:19). If a
Christian, because of his background, prefers to avoid
certain foods, he is free to do so, but he may not bind this
on others: "But him that is weak in faith receive ye, [yet]
not for decision of scruples. One man hath faith to eat all
things: but he that is weak eateth herbs. Let not him that
eateth set at nought him that eateth not; and let not him
that eateth not, judge him that eateth: for God hath
received him" (Romans 14:1-3 ASV).
  In Romans 14:4-23 Paul goes on to say, however, that 
there can be instances when one - of his own free choice - 
should avoid certain things which, although good in and of 
themselves, might under the circumstances cause someone who 
is weak to stumble.
  Notice, however, that this whole discussion is in the 
framework of things which are neither good nor bad in 
themselves. Some people misuse Paul's admonition to try to 
justify doing things which are wrong (for example, to keep 
from offending someone). That is NOT what Paul is saying.  
Whether one does or does not eat meat has nothing to do 
with right and wrong, but with personal preference. In such 
cases one should consider the sensitivities of others. But 
the sensitive (weak) person with exaggerated scruples, may 
not bind his personal preferences on others: "For the 
kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but 
righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit" 
(Romans 14:17 ASV). 
2:16 "A feast day or a new moon or a sabbath day"
  This refers to the various high days under the law of 
Moses. Jews who became Christians often continued to 
observe certain rituals of the Old Covenant, but they were 
not allowed to incorporate Old Testament practices into the 
Christian faith (See Acts 15:1-29).
  The word sabbath means rest. The sabbaths in this verse 
include all Old Covenant days of rest, including the weekly 
sabbath on the seventh day (Saturday).
  Sectarian groups who teach that Christians should keep 
the weekly sabbath, violate this verse. Most of them are 
also hypocrites because they do not actually keep the 
sabbath themselves. If a Christian wishes to do no work on 
Saturday (Exodus 20:9), not to build a fire (Exodus 35:3), 
not to carry anything heavy (Jeremiah 17:27) he is free to 
do so. But he may not bind this on others.  The weekly 
sabbath was given to commemorate the deliverance of Israel 
from Egyptian bondage: "And thou shalt remember that thou 
wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and Jehovah thy God 
brought thee out thence by a mighty hand and by an 
outstretched arm: therefore Jehovah thy God commanded thee 
to keep the sabbath day" (Deut 5:15).
2:16  "A shadow of something coming"
Deliverance from Egyptian bondage prefigured our
deliverance from sin by Jesus Christ, who gives us 
rest: "Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy 
laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon 
you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in 
heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls" 
(Matthew 11:28,29 ASV).
  Every day is a sabbath for a Christian, a day of
rest for the soul in Jesus Christ.
Roy Davison