CHRIST IN CREATION, THE CHURCH AND THE CHRISTIAN
Welcome and Prayer
Leader: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Leader: Let us pray.
Gracious God, we ask that you will reveal yourself to us again as we study your word. We realize that in you we live and move and have our being. Because of this, we have joyful confidence that you created us to have fellowship with you. Teach us, we pray, what we should do and what we should be. Strengthen our faith as we learn to walk in your ways. Increase our vision of the majesty and power of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It is in his name that we pray. Amen.
Overview of the Session
As the introduction to our study indicated, this passage is one of the clearest statements of Jesus deity and of his office as Son of God. With the portrayal of his majesty, we are also reminded that we have been brought into God’s family by Jesus’ sacrificial death. We were far away, separated by our sinful nature and actions, but Jesus brought near to God as his friends. That, Paul writes, is the Good News.
Sharing our stories
As a child, did you ever make something like a cake, toy, painting, etc., that someone else either ruined or threw out? How did that happen and how did you feel?
Reflection from personal study
In preparation for this study, take a few minutes to read and think on what two other New Testament writers wrote about Jesus.
In his Gospel, John wrote: “In the beginning the Word already existed. He was with God, and he was God. He was in the beginning with God. He created everything there is. Nothing exists that he did not make.” John 1:1-3
The writer of Hebrews wrote: “Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. But now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he made the universe and everything in it. The Son reflects God’s own glory, and everything about him represents God exactly. He sustains the universe by the mighty power of his command.” Hebrews 1:1-3.
| Colossians 1:15-23|
1 15 Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before God made anything at all and is supreme over all creation. 16 Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through him and for him. 17 He existed before everything else began, and he holds all creation together.
18 Christ is the head of the church, which is his body. He is the first of all who will rise from the dead, so he is first in everything. 19 For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ, 20 and by him God reconciled everything to him-self. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of his blood on the cross. 21 This includes you who were once so far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions, 22 yet now he has brought you back as his friends. He has done this through his death on the cross in his own human body. As a result, he has brought you into the very presence of God, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault. 23 But you must con-tinue to believe this truth and stand in it firmly. Don’t drift away from the assurance you received when you heard the Good News. The Good news has been preached all over the world, and I, Paul, have been appointed by God to proclaim it.
|1. Describe the Jesus you see in vrs. 15-17.
2. Why is the relationship between God and
Christ important to us?
3. What does it mean, “he holds all creation together? (Vr. 17).
4. In vr. 18, how is Christ the “head” of the church and how does that help us?
5. Christ is at the center of creation, the church the Christian. In each case, what is the result if he is removed?
6.In vrs. 18 – 20A, when we see Jesus, who are we seeing? What does it mean, “all God’s fullness was in Jesus”?
7. How does Jesus reconcile us to God and why is that necessary? Is that the “Good News” of vr. 23?
8. If we were “enemies” of God, and we are now his friends, what can we do with the Good News?
What was Paul doing with the Good News?
9. Does this passage raise any questions for you?
10. In what way do these verses strengthen your faith and trust in God?
Jesus was not that important in the life of the church or the Christian. Maybe some were suggesting that angels or others were as good as Jesus as a way to God. Paul clarifies Jesus’ position as being essential to creation, the life of the church and the life of the Christian. As with the universe (1:17), Jesus holds everything together. It is an assurance that should bring us peace in all areas of life.
In the opening verses of this book Paul highlighted that he was praying for them regularly. In the closing chapter 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: