Col 1:15 Knowing the Redeemer-King

Colossians 1:15

The great rescue mission has been completed!

The people sitting in darkness have seen a great light, and the Prince of Peace has ridden victorious into the City of Man, burst open the dungeons, and lead a victory parade to Heaven with the redeemed slaves marching in triumphant procession behind Him.

Meeting the Rescuer

Writing to this small flock of believers who are under pressure from religious philosophies and cultural norms, Paul wisely raises their gaze to look up and recognise the Rescuing King to whom they now belong. So easily we become entangled in the day-to-day wrestling of life. So quickly we despair at finding a way through the messiness of a culture and society determined to live apart from the knowledge of the God to Whom they owe thanks and praise (see Romans 1:21). So often we feel bogged down in the muck of the daily grind.

Look up. See the risen Christ, the God-Man Who has overcome death to reconcile His people to their God. In the face of Jesus we see the radiance of the glory of God (Hebrews 1:3). The Eternal Son has taken on flesh to be the Redeemer of humanity enslaved to sinful rebellion. Jesus from Nazareth has been appointed by God the Father to be the Head of a new humanity (Romans 5:18-19) – a people for God’s own possession (1 Peter 2:9). This Jesus is the untainted image of God, the One Man Who perfectly reflects the glorious character of the Most High.

This is your Redeemer! Catching sight of Him puts your life into perspective – the One Who rescued you is the all-powerful Ruler of Creation and head of the Church. He can be trusted, loved and obeyed.

Keep looking up when the pressures of life “at Colossae” overwhelm you; if you are “in Christ”, you need constant reminder of Who you belong to!

Side-note: Exclusive Claims That Run Against the Flow

Before continuing into the magnificent confession of faith that is found in these next five verse, we need to pause and reflect on the opening sentence. Verse 15 is a bold truth claim, backed up by the claims that Jesus made about Himself.

Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life” (John 14:6). He does not suggest that He is offering a way amongst many other options. He does not say he is able to show us the way to life. He plainly states that He is the only Way to God. In the same conversation He tells Phillip: “He who has seen Me has seen the Father.” Can Jesus be making any more exclusive claims about who He is?

“He is,” says Paul, “the image of God.” John said it this way: “no one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God has made Him known”.

Is it possible that all religions ultimately lead to God? That each has its own perspective on the same God, Who welcomes all supposedly sincere religious people no matter how they have treated His Son? Such vague belief systems, that require no surrender to the three-times-holy God, cannot coexist with the Jesus’ claims that anyone who resists believing in the Son is still under the judgement of God (John 3:18).

Here in one simple sentence the Holy Spirit brings our hearts to the judgement seat of Christ. “Choose this day whom you will serve – whether the gods of religion that draw you away from Christ, or the Redeemer King, Who has given His life in order to open up the new and living way into the life of God.”

Following Jesus is not a matter of adding your own ideas to those of the Bible. Your Redeemer King claims your whole life, and rules over you in love by His Spirit and Word, while teaching you to know, love and obey the Father.

Will you surrender to Him?