Friday, May 6, 2011

The Incomparability of Divine Life

And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. (Colossians 1:18)

Jesus, the eternal Son of God, by whom and through whom and for whom all things were created, and in whom all things hold together, is called “the head of the body.” We always speak of head and body together; the one implies the other. A head without a body is pointless; a body without a head is lifeless. It is quite an amazing thing, then that Paul speaks of Jesus in this way. Who Paul identifies as the body of which Jesus is the head is equally amazing: It is the church, composed, not of hierarchies of angels, but of flesh and blood human beings, all those who belong to God through faith in Jesus the Messiah. Every believer at Colosse, for instance, belongs to the church and is a part of this body.

Jesus is the head of the body, the church. This speaks of vital relationship. The church is not an organization, an association that can be reduced to membership numbers and mission statements. No, it is an organic, living thing where every part flows with the life of the whole. Where does this life come from? From Jesus. He is not just the head of the body, He is the “beginning,” the source, the life of the church.

Jesus is also the “firstborn from the dead.” We were once dead in the rebellion of sin (Ephesians 2:1).
But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:4-6)
In Jesus, there is spiritual life and vitality. But there is more! God has raised Jesus’ physical body from the dead, and that is the guarantee that all those who belong to Him, who are part of His body, will share in His resurrection life. God will raise us, too, bodily and physically from the dead (see Resurrection Life Now! and Resurrection and the End of the Age).

Head, beginning, firstborn. These all speak of preeminence, and indeed, Jesus is supreme over all things, for God has
Raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all. (Ephesians 1:20-23)

God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:9-11)
Jesus is preeminent in all things, incomparable in every way, and His divine life flows through us now and forever.



The Focus of Our Faith
The Focus of Our Faith
Paul’s Letters to the Jesus Believers at Colosse
Bite-Size Studies Through Colossians
by Jeff Doles

Preview with Amazon’s “Look Inside.”

Available in paperback and Kindle (Amazon), epub (Google and iTunes) and PDF.