OUR INHERITANCE IN THE KINGDOM OF LIGHT
Welcome and Prayer
Leader: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Leader: Let us pray.
Almighty God, it is not by our wisdom nor by our searching that we know you; it is by your love and through your grace that we have relationship with you. In your Son, Jesus Christ, you have revealed yourself to us and through him you have opened the storehouse of your wisdom and love. Since it is through Jesus your Son that we have been brought from darkness into your Kingdom of Light, we give you thanks and praise and glory. Amen.
Overview of the Session
The Christians Paul is writing to live in a region of the world where human knowledge is seen as the solution to human needs and weaknesses. Thus, the role of God the Son (Jesus) to bring understanding and wisdom may have been brought into question. We see a strong note of thankfulness right from the start of this chapter for God’s intervention into their lives. Through his Son, he has rescued them. They are now part of a worldwide communion of believers who share in the Kingdom’s treasures.
Sharing our stories
Some time ago, a friend of mine bought a home from a family whose elderly parents had passed away. Soon after the purchase, he discovered a bolted closet that contained a large number of gold coins. While the prior owners were unaware of this hidden fortune, it belonged to them. Have you ever “discovered” something that belonged to you but was lost, forgotten or unknown?
Reflection from personal study
Paul and Timothy wrote that they were thankful in their prayers for the believers at Colossae because they had heard from others of their faith, love and hope. This was a community that was sharing their faith by word and deed. The good news was being spread by daily contact with others. Do you think their experience should be a normal condition for Christians today? What do you think would be the result of a “contagious faith” that spread by word of mouth and works of love?
Colossians Study 1 (1:1-14) Our Inheritance in the Kingdom of Light
|1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, 2 To God’s holy people in Colossae, the faithful brothers and sisters in Christ:|
Grace and peace to you from God our Father.
3 We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all God’s people— 5 the faith and love that spring from the hope stored up for you in heaven and about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel 6 that has come to you. In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world—just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God’s grace. 7 You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, 8 and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.
9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
|1. Paul and Timothy were leaders in the church of their time. They prayed for their friends. How can we follow that model in our walk of faith?
2. What can make us thankful as we remember fellow Christians? (vrs. 3, 4)
3. What kind of inheritance stored for us in heaven do you see in this passage?
4. How would you describe Epaphras--specially gifted; part of the “clergy class”; someone we can follow?
5. Good news encourages Paul to further prayer (vr 9). How can we follow his example today?
6. Beginning with vr. 9, what seems to be important for Paul to pray about for these 1st century believers?
7. What results do you see from ‘growing in the knowledge of God” (vr. 12)?
8. How does Paul explain “being qualified” (vr. 13) to be a member of the kingdom?
9. As you read and study these verses, has someone come to your mind that you are thankful for and want to pray for?
In the opening verses of this book Paul highlighted that
he was praying for them regularly. In the closing chap-
ter he requests that those in the Lycus Valley pray for
him. He wanted them to see we are in this together and
that we should support each other through prayer. To
help us do this, those who would like, share any request
for prayer you have. Others in the group will write your
request in the space to the right. It is our intention that
we will pray for each other during the coming week.
Study Group Prayer Partners
Ephesians. 6:18 “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.”
My Prayer Partners: They’ve Asked Prayer for: