Since Jack was born, I have been doing the majority of my bible reading on my phone. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. But honestly, there’s just something you get from reading the Good Book out of an actual book.
So yesterday, I decided to read Colossians from my leather-bound bible over lunch.
I got about 20 verses in.
The bible is jam-packed full of God-given identity. And in a world where most people have no idea who or what or why they are, the Church needs to know their identity.
And there is only one place you can truly find your identity.
And here is what God has spoken about you, from merely one of the 1,189 chapters in the bible.
- You are qualified (Colossians 1:12)
Certain Christians love to talk about how unworthy we are of everything, but the bible makes it clear: Christ’s blood has made us worthy. The word “qualified” in this verse literally means “to make worthy” in the original Greek.
Not that we shouldn’t be eternally grateful. Paul’s whole point is that we should forever praise God for making us worthy, because without Him we are nothing.
- You are a partaker of the inheritance of the saints (Colossians 1:12)
But what has God made you worthy of? According to Colossians, you are worthy/qualified to share in the inheritance of God’s people.
In Galatians 3, Paul explains how this inheritance refers to the blessing of Abraham and freedom from the curse of the law, which resulted from your adoption into the family of God. Basically, because you are God’s child (having repented of your sin-filled life and accepted Christ as Lord), you are no longer subject to sin, sickness, or poverty, and are thus empowered to bless those around you with the goodness, power, and love of God.
“And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Galatians 3:29)
- You are delivered from the powers of darkness (Colossians 1:13)
Several weeks ago during his annual visit to our church, Pastor Scott Stewart pointed out that the word “all” is a very interesting word. In the original text, it means “all.” In other words, if Jesus has all authority, there is none left for the devil, so long as you don’t give him any of yours.
- You are conveyed into the kingdom of the Son (Colossians 1:13)
I don’t care what your passport says. Your citizenship is in heaven. And as a resident of the Kingdom of God, you have access to the rights and privileges of heaven. However, you also share in the responsibilities, as ambassadors and emissaries here on earth. Your job is to bring heaven to earth, as Jesus taught us in the Sermon on the Mount.
- You have redemption and forgiveness of sins (Colossians 1:14)
No matter what sins you have committed, are committing, or are planning on committing, God offers absolute forgiveness for your sins. But it’s so much more than that. Not only has He wiped away the offenses against you; He then welcomes you to become His. Your sins haven’t just been forgiven; you’ve been redeemed, bought for a price, and belong in His family.
- You are reconciled (Colossians 1:21)
Reconciled = to bring back to a state of harmony.
“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13)
- You are holy (Colossians 1:22)
We usually teach our youth that “holy” means “different,” as in we are different from this sinful world because we are united and similar to God. This word (Greek hagios) also means “cherished by God” and is the same word translated “saint.”
There you have it. You’re a holy saint who is cherished by God.
- And blameless (Colossians 1:22)
I like how the King James Version translates it: “unblameable.” It’s not that you currently aren’t being blamed for something; you’re immune to blame. The devil couldn’t accuse you if he tried.
This phrase is sometimes interpreted “without blemish.” This no doubt evokes images of the Old Covenant sacrifice, where animals were required to be “without blemish” to be accepted by God. It’s good to know that we are acceptable to God.
- And above reproach in His sight (Colossians 1:22)
This is how God sees you. In His eyes, you are holy, unblameable, and above reproach. Therefore, it’s our responsibility to live up to this. Just because you are above reproach in His sight doesn’t mean your lifestyle is above reproach to your parents, friends, or co-workers.
Make absolutely sure that your life is in line with God’s Word. You have been delivered from satan’s grasp; therefore live a life free from sin. Jesus died on the cross so you could inherit the blessed life; therefore enjoy the blessings God has provided. You are a holy saint; therefore live differently from the rest of the world.
Don’t blend in. Live righteously. Don’t talk like a sailor or hang out in bars or watch the disgusting filth that passes for entertainment these days. Live the life God created you to live.
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your body a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. And don’t be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:1-2)