Tuesday 21 August 2018

Bible Book:

“Do not let anyone disqualify you, insisting on self-abasement and worship of angels, dwelling on visions, puffed up without cause by a human way of thinking and not holding fast to the head, from whom the whole body, nourished and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows with a growth that is from God.” (v. 18-19)

Colossians 2:16-23 Tuesday 21 August 2018

Psalm: Psalm 119:145-160


It is a mistake to read the epistles as if they are addressed to individuals: they are generally letters written to communities of believers. The letter to the Colossians reminds us that holding fast to Christ “the head” means that believers are not on an individualistic spiritual journey but have become members of a community in which they need to live together in love and to be accountable to one another. In this community, spiritual growth is not a private matter but a corporate task.

The image of Christ as the “head” is yet another version of the body-head metaphor so common in the writings of the Early Church. Though there is a difference here in meaning. This image is about the body’s complete dependence on the head for nourishment and support. The human body cannot function without the head, in the same way the community of believers cannot be nourished and grow without Christ. It is the “head” who enables all the other parts of the “body” to work and grow and be nourished. If any of the “ligaments and sinews” fail the whole “body” is affected, “the body” lives or dies as a corporate activity.

There is no place for individualism in the Body of Christ and that is the very thing that Paul is warning against here. Anything that weakens the connection between Christ and his Church is potentially fatal to the Church, as it is destructive to the Church’s unity and growth.

The Church’s present obsession with numbers can be a distraction in the same league as “self-abasement and worship of angels and dwelling on visions,” for it is the health and vitality of the body which arises from its relationship with the ”head,” which is vital. As a Church we can only grow “with a growth that is from God.” This is recognised by the way in which the whole body functions healthily as its members work together to provide nourishment and support for one another.

To Ponder

  • In what ways is your church functioning healthily to provide nourishment and support to its members?
  • What aspects of your church’s life make it attractive to others?


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