Living in Christ: The Head of the Church
Monday, May 6, 2019 | Colossians 1:18–20
While there have always been famous people, the modern world has taken fame to a new level. Outlets like People magazine and TMZ encourage us to care about every detail of celebrities’ workout routines, diets, and vacations. Sociologists use terms like “celebrity culture” to describe the obsessive attention given to the lives of public figures. Unfortunately, this culture of creating celebrities can even seep into the church.
It can be easy for us to elevate famous pastors and church leaders. While God has gifted people to serve in leadership in the church, the church has only one true leader. In the concluding section of his celebration of Jesus, the apostle Paul proclaims Jesus as the “head of the body, the church” (v. 18).
It is possible that Paul was subtly confronting false teachers, who had taken upon themselves too much authority. If so, Paul confronts their behavior by affirming the supreme authority of Jesus. This authority is based on three central truths: (1) Jesus rose from the dead.
In His resurrection, Jesus serves as the assurance, or first-fruits, of the resurrection of all believers (v. 18). (2) Jesus is God. The fullness of divinity dwells in Him. We can know what God is like. He is revealed to us in Jesus (v. 19). (3) Through His sacrificial death, Jesus made possible the reconciliation between a fallen world and God (v. 20). Jesus reveals to us that God loves us and is even willing to pay a great personal cost to make a relationship with Him possible.
Jesus is the head of the church not because He has published a lot of books or because He has a large social media presence but because of who He is and what He has done.
APPLY THE WORD
Paul told the Corinthian church that “what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Cor. 4:5). These words reflect the heart of ministry pleasing to God. Thank the Lord that the church does not depend upon savvy leaders for success. All our dependence is upon the risen Savior!
PRAY WITH US | NIGERIA
Content from our persecution preparedness seminar is being broadcast via radio to northern Nigeria where some of the most extreme areas of persecution exist. Please pray that these radio messages will continue to strengthen believers.