appearances

Shadows

Do our churches draw us to routines or to Christ? If we’re meant to dwell in Christ can any man-made patterns in our worship or our benevolence efforts draw us to Christ or to the attention of men? Who are we meant to please?

Man prays by a cross as the setting sun lights up the sky.

(Colossians 2:16-18 WEB) 16Let no man therefore judge you in food, or in drink, or in respect of a holy-day, or or the new-moon, or of the sabbaths: 17Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body [is] of Christ. 18Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshiping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,

There are many customs and habits that make us look pious to other people. We should realize these things don’t determine our spiritual health or the value of our services to God. Weak Christians focus on the exterior of people; partly because they haven’t looked any deeper inside their own soul than what they suppose in others. We need to ignore, and maybe correct, those people who would judge us on the basis of man-made customs or habits.

Cling to Christ

(Colossians 2:19-20 WEB) 19And not holding the head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God. 20Wherefore, if ye are dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances,

It’s by clinging to Christ that we approach the wholeness that God intentions for all of us. We should take no account of man-made customs and habits. But don’t we often find that even though we’ve been freed by the blood of Jesus, that we take up our wordly customs or habits.

(Colossians 2:21-23 WEB) 21(Touch not; taste not; handle not; 22 Which all are to perish with the using;) according to the commandments and doctrines of men? 23 Which things have indeed a show of wisdom in will-worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honor to the satisfying of the flesh.
NASB 2:23d [but are] of no value against fleshly indulgence.
*

In Christ we are promised a rich life here on earth. But it is temporal. And in our flesh we don’t always appreciate blessings that could come from trials that we experience in our brief time here on Earth.

Our rewards here on earth come only if we’re steadfast in our devotion to Jesus. For all the trials that might await us, we have a Heavenly destination waiting for us. There is value in self-discipline and fasting. But this is only done between ourselves and Jesus – not for the benefit or judgement of worldly people.

* NASB used to clarify WEB

Colossians

To see all the posts on Colossians select the tag Colossians.

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