During my own personal study, I have been mining the text of Paul's letter to the church at Colossae. Whether we know it or not, this ancient group of believers has been quite instrumental in providing us with examples of Christian living that we still reference here in the 21st century.
What has proven to be beneficial to us came as a result of problems within the fellowship at Colossae. This is the very reason the apostle Paul writes to the church. Their exact problem is never identified, but we can surmise by looking at the text what some of the issues happened to be. Behind the curtain of this body of believers, we find some destructive heresies. Paul mentioned issues with some who wanted to take them captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition and the elemental spirits of the world (2:8). He also spoke of a Judaizing problem of keeping festivals and Sabbaths (2:16). Finally, he wrote about a situation where certain persons sought to convince the church of the necessity of angel worship (2:18).
They had a myriad of problems and Paul wanted to help them solve it. Though their problems were complex, the solution was simple—keep your eyes on the One who has the preeminence (1:15-18). As a matter of fact, Paul used the solution of Jesus to counter all of the issues the Colossians were dealing with.
I am finding that if the church collectively or individually allows Jesus to have preeminence, many of our issues would become non-issues. This takes surrender, however. We must learn to surrender our pride, our will, and our wants, while letting go of our our desire to be heard and recognized.
Surrender is one of the things a Christian needs to learn in order to become a better disciple. True disciples keep their eyes on their teacher.
Imagine if all of us did that. What a movement we would have! The world would once again be turned upside down.
For the Kingdom,