For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ.
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
Comment: I’m being a fool if I think that I can deal with this passage adequately in a short paragraph, but here goes! Paul had never personally been to this city or to some others where the gospel had taken root. He is deeply concerned that the young church there had not grasped fully what a precious, magnificent thing the gospel is.
- It was meant to fill them with courage. Courage is after all the central part of encouragement!
- Love as found in the gospel message wasn’t meant to be a side issue but to knit them together into a unity!
- In the gospel, and to be discovered by a treasure hunt, all the root issues of wisdom and knowledge are hidden.
- You will come up against heretical teachers who will seek to delude you from the core truth of the gospel message by their plausible arguments.
- Although not physically with you, I am one in spirit with you. I long to see you firm in the faith, and ‘thank you’ that so far I see that firmness in your stance.
- In essence I want you ‘to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.’
Prayer: Thank you for the richness of the gospel which You have called us into.