26th June 2018

Christ In You 

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…”
Colossians 3:16 (ESV) 

Colossians was written by the Apostle Paul to combat false teachers that arose in this fledgling congregation who were demoting the importance and significance of Christ. Paul’s emphasis on the uniqueness and supremacy of Christ’s work reminds them that they need not look elsewhere for completion of salvation. Hence his instruction to “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.”

But how can we apply Paul’s words to a 1st century church in the 21st century? The word of Christ can refer to both Christ’s teachings and teachings about him, which we find not only in the gospels but throughout the Bible because all Scripture points to Jesus (Luke 24:27, 44; John 5:39, 46).

The message of and about Jesus must dwell in us, which means we must be at home with the story of Jesus and he must be at home in us. We must live in the Scripture so that the Scripture lives in us. The home where we live is the place we come back to day after day for refuge, peace and rest; and we must continually come back to the word of Christ for spiritual refuge, peace and rest.

This word is to dwell in us ‘richly’ implying that we need an abundant supply of God’s Word. Scripture is stocked with thought-provoking, encouraging and comforting teaching about Jesus; it’s a place filled with rich treasures, so spend time reading, studying and meditating on the word of Christ. The more spiritually rich food you eat, the healthier you become.

Yet there is more to Paul’s admonition here. When he says “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” the ‘you’ is plural. This means that Paul is not simply talking about each of us having personal Bible study, he’s saying that the word of Christ should dwell richly in the church. We are to teach and admonish one another (Colossians 3:16) so that the word of Christ permeates the life of the church. In that way, false teaching about the nature and work of Christ will be negated whether it is in the 1st or 21st century.

When the word of Christ dwells in the church richly there is only one response we can have—worship. And so Paul provides the perfect conclusion for a church centred on Jesus by saying we are to sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in our hearts to God.

Father, may our worship overflow as Christ’s word is pre-eminent in the church.

Study by Barry Robinson


About the Author:
Barry Robinson is an Elder and pastoral worker in the Greater London area, particularly the Camberwell and North London congregations of the Grace Communion International.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion International Camberwell
The Salvation Army Hall
105 Lomond Grove

Meeting Time:
Saturday 11 am

Local Congregational Contact:
Barry Robinson
Email: camberwell@gracecom.church

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One Response to “26th June 2018”

  1. Richard Dempsey on June 26th, 2018 8:48 am

    An excellent study and very meaningful. The idea of Christ’s word being ‘at home’ in the church is really inspiring and thought provoking. Thanks for sharing the understanding.

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