The Most Concentrated Description of Christ’s Glories
Paul has just prayed for the Colossians that they would “be filled with the knowledge of [God’s] will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” (vv. 9-10). In verse 14, he begins a litany of amazing truths about Jesus Christ that are probably the most concentrated description of the glories of Jesus in the New Testament. Let’s list them—all fifteen of them—and then come back to the one I want to focus on.
- Verse 14: In him we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
- Verse 15a: He is the image of the invisible God.
- Verse 15b: He is the firstborn of all creation—that is, the specially honored, first and only Son over all creation.
- Verse 16a: By him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities. (We will come back to verse 16.)
- Verse 16b: All things were created through him.
- Verse 16c: All things were created for him.
- Verse 17a: He is before all things.
- Verse 17b: In him all things hold together.
- Verse 18a: He is the head of the body, the church.
- Verse 18b: He is the beginning.
- Verse 18c: He is the firstborn from the dead.
- Verse 18d: In everything he is preeminent.
- Verse 19: In him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.
- Verse 20a: He reconciles all things to himself, whether on earth or in heaven.
- Verse 20b: He makes peace by the blood of his cross.
This is worth memorizing. If your heart ever wavers and grows cold, go here; memorize this litany of glories and ask God to give you affections that correspond to the measure of this greatness. If any person or any power or any wisdom or any love awakens any admiration or any amazement or any joy, let it be the greatest Person and the greatest power and the greatest wisdom and the greatest love that exists—Jesus Christ.