Verse: Colossians 3:16-17
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Does this sound like our/your church?
1. Word of God is central to all aspects of the church:
A. Teaching and admonishing in wisdom
1. Teach: to impart knowledge or skill
One definition read “Show or explain to someone how to do something” Where we don’t need “self-help Jesus” we do need solid biblical based teaching of the Word of God. A huge reason that I am called to church ministry is largely because of the failure in the church with this very subject today. So many people are told “now you are saved” and the teaching stops, they are given the Bible (although not always) and sometimes an invitation to a church or a class and the teaching ends. Does your church teach the Bible and continue to disciple showing the love of God in their lives? Do our churches continue to teach the Bible or after we are saved do we just become another social club?
2. Admonish: Warn or reprimand someone firmly
When is the last time you heard your pastor with a warning or reprimand? I was discussing this with a pastor the fact that we were having to implement Church discipline at such a young age to some of the members of our church. While on one hand it was making me sad, to him it was encouraging! In the last years the church has grown lax on standards and even more lax on the warning and reprimanding of the congregation much less following biblical basis for correction and repentance.
When is the last call for repentance? When was the word preached and a call for conviction of our sins? When was the last time we cared enough to warn someone about Hell and wanted to share the salvation we have sealed on our hearts? This applies to the CHURCH as well as to the WORLD. We must be constantly calling each other to live a holy life.
How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?
B. Singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs
1. Singing: this is an active part of the ministry, singing as an individual and singing as a congregation. Our world is full of music, it permeates everything from our entertainment to accompanying us as we ride the elevator. it puts notes in our hearts as we drive down the road (no not everyone listens to talk radio) and it backs us up as we shop in the grocery store. We go to bed listening to it and our radio alarm clock wakes us up to it in the morning. Music is around us all the time.
Singing is our active participation of corporate worship. Its not just for the shower any more
Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth;
break forth into joyous song and sing praises!
2. Psalms hymns and spiritual songs: Psalms are scripture, hymns are generally theology or heavy songs, and then there are spiritual songs. We must be careful in both hymns and spiritual songs that are not just pure scripture to make sure they follow the guideline that is laid out for us here in Colossians: does the “word of Christ dwell in them richly?”
So often we here non-worshipful songs or songs that have lyrics contrary to the teaching of scripture. We must be on guard for that as leaders but also as the average Joe in church! To much we grab the latest thing off the radio and try and jam it into our churches (yeah I am guilty of this too) and we don’t take the time to evaluate the song in the light of scripture.
I was about to bring a song to our worship team and I was gathering the music and samples of the song and I realized that the first verse of the song sounded great musically but that removed from the music it made it seem like Evolution was happening and God just made order out of the chaos and “created” us. wrapped up in the catchy tune and a great chorus I had to stop and ask God to keep me safe in my own worship with music.
C. Thankfulness in the heart to God
Sometimes there are some of us that need to be reminded it isn’t all about theology and the word, it has to also be our response to those things. Our congregation is gathered in worship not just for music and preaching/teaching but also to express our joy in the Lord. To give thanks for what he has done and will continue to do!
2. Everything is done in Jesus Name
Someday I will expand on this but for now it is sufficient to say, “As sinful men of the flesh, we are often swept up in our own ideas of grandeur rather than the Glory of God.“
3. Everything is done giving thanks to God
(see 1. c) 🙂
So much for it being just a simple verse it turned into more of a sermon in the making 😉