Truth. What is Truth?
Have you noticed how opinionated folks are these days about anything and everything? I think that it is safe to say that we live in a polarizing time. There is so much info available these days that you can find whatever you need to support your view, no matter what it is. But the bigger problem is, what if that info is wrong? What if it is false?
In the early days of the New Testament Church, there were some who were sharing false messages related to the gospel; they were distorting the truth. This was one of the primary reasons that the Apostle Paul was led to pen a letter to the Colossian Church. He wanted to clear up any misinformation before it took root and began to cause divisions and problems in the church.
We are starting a new series at Watermark called Steadfast: Living for Christ in a Wayward World. We are going to be unpacking the truths God has for us in the book of Colossians. As we launch this series, we are learning how we can be rooted in truth - the true message of the gospel. (Col. 1:5). It is imperative that we are rooted in that truth or we will be swallowed up by the world and the world’s values before we even realize it! Our focal text is Colossians 1:1-8.
How can I be rooted in the truth?
1) I am rooted in truth when I am in Christ. (Col. 1:1-2). Paul uses two adjectives to describe the believers at Colossae… holy and faithful. As believers, in Christ, we are to be holy and faithful. Holy means to be “set apart”; not in a way that is repelling or repulsive, but in a way that is compelling and attractive for Christ’s sake. That means there should be something different about us as believers, compared with those who don’t yet believe; that is, different in the way we talk, act, and think. (1 Pet. 2:9). We reflect Christ. At Watermark, we say, “make an impression and leave a mark for Him!”
We are also “faithful”, which is always used in the New Testament to describe Christ-Followers. We are united in Christ as a family of believers, which is why we are brother and sisters, in Christ. There are no barriers to belief; everyone is welcome at the foot of the cross. 26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, Galatians 3:26. Holiness and faithfulness comes through faith in Jesus Christ. (2 Cor.5:17)
2) I am rooted in truth when my faith and love in Christ is evident to everyone around me! (Col.1:3-4). The church in Colossae was not made up of “secret Believers”. Their belief was evidenced by their actions of faith and love! In the New Testament, there isn’t any instruction about being a secret disciple. In fact, it is clear that when you choose to follow Jesus and surrender your life to His leadership, then it will be publicly evidenced by faith and love.
Faith and love go hand in hand! God desires us to have a genuine faith in Christ and an authentic love for others that is clearly evidenced in our lives. Like the Colossian church, At Watermark, our faith in Christ is evidenced by our love for others… and our love for others is fueled by our faith in Christ! As we kick off a new ministry year this month, I’m looking forward to making our faith and love evident to many in our community and our world! What will that look like in your life?
3) I am rooted in truth when I am filled with hope that is out of this world! (Col.1:5-6a). Our hope as believers is the truth born out of the gospel! The Greek word for gospel literally means “good news,” and that word was used in classical Greek to express the good news of victory in a battle. The gospel is the good news of Christ’s victory over Satan, sin, and death. (1 Cor. 1:3-4). Our faith and love springs from a hope that is born out of the truth of this good news!
Do you know what Paul means by “hope”? It is different than the way we tend to use that word; it is not “wishful thinking”, but instead “confident assurance.” It is a word that contains no doubt. (Titus 1:2). As believers, we are rooted in hope - no doubt, confident, assurance - of the true good news!
4) I am rooted in truth when I am sharing the gospel which will bear fruit! (Col. 1:6b-8). The gospel was bearing fruit in that time because people were attracted to the true message of the gospel, a message filled with mercy and grace. They were attracted to the faith and love of Christ-Followers. They were inspired by hope. And they were being changed forever by the true message of the gospel.
The same is true today; we can see the fruit of the gospel! Why? Because when we are filled with true message of the gospel, we will share that truth with those who are lost and far from God. There are people in your life right now who are burdened by the weight of their sin and failure. People who are longing for mercy and grace. People who are looking for light in a desperate and dark world. You have the truth they long to hear in the true message of the gospel. Share it! Invite others to join you at Watermark where they will hear it! It will bear fruit.
For much more, click here to listen to: Steadfast: Part 1 - Rooted in Truth.