Supremacy of Christ in Creation

Gil Rugh

Copyright © 1997
Indian Hills Community Church
Lincoln, Nebraska

Colossians 1:15-17

The book of Colossians is about Jesus Christ. He is the exalted Christ, the sovereign Christ, the supreme Christ, the One who is the Lord of all. Christianity is a religion about a person. It is about the person of Jesus Christ. Salvation in the plan of God is inseparably linked to a person, the person of Jesus Christ. When you come to experience God's salvation, you are brought into a relationship with a person, the person of Jesus Christ. Acts 4:12 says, "And there is salvation in no one else;..." - in no other person - "... for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved." Jesus Christ is totally unique from every other human being who has ever existed or ever will exist. It is natural, then, for Satan to constantly distort and twist the truth concerning Jesus Christ as he opposes and attacks the work of God in salvation. Satan desires that men, women and young people will be confused regarding Jesus Christ - who He really is and what He really accomplished in His death and resurrection.

There is a twofold purpose in the strategy of Satan for opposing the truth concerning Christ. Satan's first purpose is that he desires to keep men and women from coming to the salvation that is found in Christ alone. You understand that Satan's work is relatively simple. He only has to keep you confused about one person - Jesus Christ - in order to assure that you will be lost for eternity. The Apostle Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 4:3, "And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing." This veil over the eyes prevents people from seeing. Verse 4: "in whose case the god of this world..." - and the god, small g, of this world is Satan - "...has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God." We will pick up that phrase - "Christ, the image of God" - in our study of Colossians this morning. You see, Satan desires to blind the hearts and minds of people concerning Jesus Christ. Satan wants to keep them from really seeing and comprehending who Christ is and what He accomplished when He was crucified on the cross. Why? If you are in the dark about the person or work of Jesus Christ, then you cannot be saved because there is salvation in no one else. He said in John 14:6: "...I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me."

The second purpose Satan has in twisting and distorting the truth concerning Christ is to keep those who have believed in Christ from growing and maturing in their new life. He wants to stunt the growth of those who have been born into God's family by faith in Christ. Turn over to 2 Corinthians 11:3. Paul writes, "But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ." How does this happen? Verse 4: "For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully."

You see, Satan brings along teaching that is not according to the truth that God has revealed. His desire is to lure the people of God away from a life of devotion. I love the expression, "the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ." If their minds are led astray, their lives no longer manifest with clarity the beauty of their Savior. They are stunted in their growth and fail to mature as they should. Very simply, those are Satan's purposes. He tries to keep people in the dark concerning Christ in order to confuse them and to lead them away from a life of simple, pure devotion to Christ.

Come over to the book of Colossians, which Paul wrote to warn the Colossians about the false teaching that was confronting them. This false teaching was really a work of Satan, who was trying to undermine the work of God at Colossae. Turn to chapter 2. We aren't going to look at the details of this now, but you must appreciate what Paul is doing in chapter 1 when he will begin to unfold these tremendous truths concerning Jesus Christ so that when he addresses the error in chapter 2, you will be able to see how much in conflict the error is with the simple truth concerning Christ.

We must be very careful. It is distressing to realize what Christians tolerate. We saw the rebuke that Paul gives to the Corinthians in 2 Corinthians 11:4: "This false teaching and corruption that comes - oh, you bear with this beautifully." That is not a good sign. We need to be alert and aware. We need to know the truth. And then everything that does not measure up to the truth is rejected.

1. Four False Teachings Confront Colossians

I will note four points of the false teaching that are confronting the Colossians in chapter 2. Number one: It failed to appreciate that Jesus Christ is fully God as well as fully man. Look at verse 9: "For in Him..." - Christ - "...all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form." He is God. He is man. So this false teaching failed to appreciate particularly the fullness of the deity of Jesus Christ.

Secondly, it failed to understand that we are made complete in Christ alone. Look at the first part of verse 10: " and in Him you have been make complete...." We will see the play on words that is here when we get to this section. In Him you have been made full, picking up on the word full or fullness in verse 9. "In Him all fullness dwells, and in Him you have been made full." This false teaching failed to appreciate that we are made full, made complete, in Christ alone.

Thirdly, it did not understand the full and complete sovereignty of Christ over all creation. Look at the end of verse 10: "...He is the head over all rule and authority." Verse 15: "When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities..." He is supreme, as we will see.

The fourth point I have noted: The false teaching tried to put the believer under the law and promoted legalistic ideas for living the Christian life. This is seen in verse 16: "Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath day." It failed to appreciate God's plan for Christian living.

To correct this, come back to chapter 1. You need a proper understanding of the person and work of Christ. One of the greatest sections on Christ - Christology - is found in Colossians 1:15-20. In a very concise and compact way, the absolute supremacy of Christ in regard to creation and redemption is beautifully unfolded. The riches and depths of this passage are almost overwhelming. We could do a series on these verses, but we are just going to highlight them. It is a rich and full section on the person and work of Christ.

2. Understanding of Passage Absolutely Essential

There are two aspects - the supremacy of Christ in creation in verses 15 to 17 and the supremacy of Christ in redemption in verses 18 to 20. We are going to look today at the supremacy of Christ in regard to creation. It is absolutely essential that we understand the truth here. We read that Satan blinds the minds of the unbeliever so that the light of the glorious gospel doesn't get through. This passage clearly illustrates that because this is a passage that members of the cults will take you to in order to try to show that Jesus Christ is not God. Amazingly, that is the exact opposite of what the passage is teaching. But Satan has blinded these people to the point that they are totally opposed to the clear teaching of a passage like this.

Paul flows into this section naturally. In verse 13, he said, "For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." Verse 15 continues. In our English Bible, verse 15 begins And He. But the Greek text, as Paul wrote it, begins with Who. "Who is the image of the invisible God." The idea, the meaning, is not changed, but you see the connection, " whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins, who is the image of the invisible God."

When Paul brings up the subject of Christ, he often just can't just move on. He has to unfold something of the beauty of the person that he is talking about. So he says in verse 15, "And He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation." We are familiar with the word that is translated image here. It is the Greek word, icon. We have brought icon over into English. An icon is a statue or a picture. The key idea in the word icon, or image, is that it is a likeness of something. There are two main aspects in the meaning of the word. First, there is the aspect of representation. An icon, an image, represents something. It stands for something. It reflects something - like the image on a coin. Perhaps we have a past president's image there. It represents that past president. It also manifests something. An image is a manifestation of what is being represented. This is crucial here because we are told that He, Christ, is the image - the representation and manifestation - of the invisible God. What Paul is saying here is the very being of God, who is unseen, is made visible in the person of Jesus Christ.

The book of Genesis tells us that mankind was created in the image of God. Genesis 1:27: "God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them." As God's creation, we do manifest something of His character, His person. We are persons with emotion, intellect, will and so on. Still, we do not perfectly and fully manifest and represent this God. But Jesus Christ does because in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, as we saw in chapter 2, verse 9. He is a full and complete and clear manifestation of God.

Turn back to John 1:18: "No one has seen God at any time..." That is speaking specifically of God the Father here, the invisible God of Colossians 1:15. "No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom if the Father, He has explained Him." He has exegeted Him. He has declared Him. He is the One who has made Him known. So if you haven't seen the invisible God, how do you come to know Him? Through the revelation that is given of Him in the person of His Son. Look over in John 12:45: "He who sees Me sees the One who sent Me." Now He is not talking about physical form because God is a spirit, Jesus said in John 4:24. We have already been told that no man has seen God at any time. He doesn't have physical form. But Jesus said, He who has seen me has seen the Father. How can that be? Because the very nature, the very character, the very being of God is manifest in Jesus Christ. That is what He is saying here. If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father.

Look in John, chapter 14. Now this is the last night of Jesus. This is after the last supper. Jesus has spent three years in public ministry with these men. Here he is, within hours of His crucifixion, and Phillip says in verse 8, "...Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." If we could just see the Father, Phillip said, that would settle it. Verse 9: "Jesus said to him, 'Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know me, Phillip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, 'Show us the Father.'" There is nothing else to see, Phillip. You have seen Me; you have seen the Father. You have seen His attributes, His character, His being, His nature. It doesn't mean Father and Son are the same person, but they are the same in their very being and nature and character. They are God. I mean, what do you want to see, Phillip? Jesus Christ is the revelation of God the Father. You could jot down Hebrews 1:3, which tells us that Jesus Christ is the exact representation of God the Father's nature. He is "...the exact representation of His nature..." That is what we are talking about.

3. Avoid Cults' Definition of 'Firstborn'

Colossians 1:15 says, "And He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation." Now things begin to unravel. The firstborn of all creation. The cults take you to this and they say, "He is the firstborn of all creation. What does firstborn mean? First born, born first of all creation. Of all creation, he was born first. So, therefore, He is part of creation, but His position is He is the first of creation because He was born first of all the creation." That is where we have to be careful. Sometimes you might say, "Well, it makes sense." It may make sense, but it is bad theology. It is not true. The fact is if you study the context, then the rest of Scripture, you find out that concept doesn't even make sense. We sometimes take a word, use its English idea and then build a theology out of it. But that isn't what Paul is talking about. First, the context alone indicates you can't be saying that He is part of the creation because Paul will go on to stress in verse 16 that He is the creator of everything that ever exists. Nothing excluded. And in verse 17 Paul again will stress that He is before everything, that He preceded everything. Paul will stress and belabor the point that He precedes creation. In fact, He created everything that exist, so He can't be part of creation. He is before it.

Firstborn. The idea of a firstborn being the first one born in the family is used through the Old Testament. The firstborn had the right of inheritance. He had the supreme position in the family. In other words, the firstborn got a double portion of the inheritance. This kept the family fortune intact, so to speak, the land and so on. The firstborn son received the double portion, so he had the position of honor, if you will, the position of supremacy in the family. Now that has comes to be what is connected with the expression or title of firstborn. But it does not always mean the one born first in time. It carries the connotation of the one who is supreme, the one who is in the place of honor. For example, remember Jacob and Esau. Esau is the firstborn, but Jacob inherits the blessing. He receives the right of the firstborn, so the honor will pass down through him, and the double portion and so on.

4. 'Firstborn' Israel wasn't Earth's First Nation

There are two passages that you ought to have in mind concerning this word firstborn. In Exodus, chapter 4, the Lord is instructing Moses what to tell Pharaoh. God tells Moses that He will kill the firstborn child in each of the families of the Egyptians. But note what He says that Moses is to say to Pharaoh in verse 22: "Then you shall say to Pharaoh, 'Thus says the Lord, 'Israel is My son, my firstborn.'" Well, He is not talking about a literal firstborn in time because that is not true of Israel. Israel is not the first nation born on the earth. Israel did not even begin as a seed until God called Abraham in Genesis, chapter 12. By then other nations existed in the world. Empires existed. Israel experienced its birth as a nation while in Egypt, but Egypt already existed 400 years earlier when Jacob and his 11 sons joined a 12th son, Joseph, in Egypt. The Lord said, "Israel is My son, My firstborn." In effect, He is saying, "Israel is supreme to Me. Israel is in the place of honor with respect to Me. Israel is the subject of My prime affections and love." The Egyptians would understand what He meant when He said, "Israel is My firstborn." God is declaring, "I view these people, this nation, as you view your firstborn child. They hold this position of honor with Me."

Look over in Psalms, chapter 89. This is a passage that has to do with the coming Messiah, who will be a descendant of David. In verse 27, God says of Him, "I also shall make Him My firstborn. God says, "This is a descendant down the line, but I will make Him My firstborn. I will place Him in a position of supremacy, honor. What does that mean? I will make Him My firstborn, the highest of the Kings of the earth. He will not be the first of the kings, but I am making Him the firstborn, which means He'll be the highest of the kings of the earth. He has the position of supremacy."

So we come to Colossians 1:16 and read of Christ, the firstborn of creation. That does not mean He is part of creation. It means He is supreme over all creation. In fact, there is another very good Greek word that would have expressed it the first of creation. It is not the word Paul uses here. He could have spoken of Him as the first of creation, but he speaks of Him as the firstborn. He is the One who has supremacy, honor, the position of authority. Note how this is elaborated in verse 16, where Paul is going to give the reason for declaring Christ's supremacy over creation. We begin with the preposition for, and that is fine. It is a conjunction in Greek, not a preposition. For is one of its meanings, but it is normally translated in our English Bibles as because. "Because by Him all things were created..."

For gives us a similar idea , so you understand that Paul has given an explanation here. He is the firstborn. Why? Because by Him all things were created. There are three prepositional phrases in verse 16 that are beautiful in unfolding the relationship Jesus Christ has to the creation. This first one is by Him. Once again, for in English is a preposition, but it is really a conjunction in Greek here. The second prepositional phrase is through Him near the end of the verse. Him." Thirdly is for Him at the end of the verse. By Him...through Him...for Him. Those three prepositional phrases unfold the relationship that Jesus Christ has to creation. Let's look at these three phrases, then we'll go back and fill in the rest of the verse.

"For by Him all things were created..." The preposition translated by here means either by or in. And I think here it should mean in, and almost every commentator I checked said it should mean in. There is no problem theologically because the second phrase - through Him - will give you the idea of the agency. So here it seems Paul is talking about in Him because with the second prepositional phrase, through Him," he'll express that it was created by Him or by means of Him. What does it means by in Him? Well, we can include by, but it is more than that. It's the idea that all creation took place within the sphere of the person of Christ. Nothing was created apart from Him. One commentator said, "In His person resided the creative energy that produced all of creation." All of creation takes place within the person of Christ, so in Him all things were created. That's a remarkable statement. You appreciate that He is supreme over all creation when you understand it was within Him that all creation took place. He cannot be part of that creation because all creation will take place in Him.

5. Christ Created All Things

"For in Him all things..." - four times in this verse and the next verse it will be stressed that He was responsible for the creation of all things. It happened in Him. You will note at the end of the verse that Paul repeats all things again. This sometimes becomes a problem when we think that all things means pretty well everything, most things. But that's not right. All things in Him were created. At the end of the verse Paul says "...all things have been created through Him..." God made the world through Him - through His power, through His ability. Hebrews 1:2 says that God the Father made the world through Him. So, the triune God - one God, three persons; Father, Son and Holy Spirit - comprise one God, and creation was the plan of the triune God. We have no way to comprehend how the three persons of the Godhead worked this all out. We are simply told what happened. God the Father worked through God the Son in creating the world, and through His power, through His ability, creation happened.

This statement that Jesus Christ created all things also is found in John 1:3: "All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being." All things came into being through Him. Nothing happens outside of Him. So it happens in Him, it happens through Him, and it happens for Him. It means He is the goal of all creation. It is for His honor and His glory. It's the idea of "I am the Alpha and Omega" from the book of Revelation - the beginning and the end. Grace finds its beginning in Him. It finds its culmination in Him. Everything exists to display His glory. He is the owner of all and is sovereign over all. So He is the first-born. He has supremacy. Everything that was created is all for Him.

Some of you remember S. Lewis Johnson and sat under his ministry when he was here. He is a retired professor of Greek at Dallas Seminary. He says concerning this passage and these prepositional phrases, "Our Lord is not only the builder of the universe, He is also its architect and owner. All things have been created in Him. The eternal plans for the creation abode in Him." He is like the architect in that the plans for what will be built reside within Him. By Him - He acted as the builder of this creation. Or, through Him - it was created through Him. He was the builder. Genesis 1:1: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." Jesus Christ was the one spoken of there. For Him - the creation belongs to Him and is to reflect his glory. So you start with an architect, Then comes the builder and finally the owner of what is built. And Jesus Christ is everything. It takes place in Him. It takes place through Him. It is for Him. He is sovereign. Is it any wonder he is called the firstborn? He has supremacy over all creation because all creation came into existence in Him and through Him and for Him. He is the firstborn of all creation. He is supreme over all.

Now, let's back up. He elaborates on this all things in verse 16. When he says all things, he means all things. And he says all things twice in verse 16. The verse begins, "For by Him all things were created...." The verse ends, "...all things have been created through Him and for Him." Verse 17, "He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together." You have it four times, twice in each verse. All things. All things. We tend to be a little thick-headed. We hear "all things, all things, all things, all things." Then we turn around and say, "Yes, God sure has created most things." Wait a minute. All things. So you see He is apart from creation because everything, all things, are created by Him. What does this mean? All things in verse 16 includes things both in the heavens and on earth, so it means every location, every place. Whether you talk about things related to the earth or things related to the heavens, all have been created by Him. All things visible and invisible were created by Him. Human beings and angelic beings were created by Him. And angels are going to be a particular problem.

6. Created Angels aren't to be Worshipped

Some of the false teaching concerning angels may have been seeds of what in the second century will develop into Gnosticism, which is from the Greek word for knowledge. The Gnostics had a variety of corrupted teachings. One, they taught that matter was evil. They had a dichotomy between the spirit world and the physical world, and the things physical were evil. So they developed a teaching that involved a series of emanations from God. These emanations were progressive, tiered, until it came down to the understanding that one of these emanations or angelic kinds of beings created the world. God wouldn't create the world because the world is evil. He couldn't be touched by it, so distance had to be put between God and the creation. All of this gets entangled to the point where people are encouraged to worship angels because they are beings between God and men.

It helps explain why that when we get to chapter 2, verse 18, Paul will write, "Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize by delighting in self-abasement and the worship of the angels..." It seems we are always trying to put intermediators between God and men. For instance, the Roman Catholic church puts the saints and Mary there. And the Gnostics wanted to put angels or angelic kinds of emanations there. No. God in the person of Christ stands between God and men. 1 Timothy 2:5: "For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus."

So back in Colossians 1:16, visible and invisible includes the angelic realm. And furthermore within the angelic realm, that includes whether they are "...thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities..." Whatever hierarchy or position that is held within the angelic, invisible realm was created by Him. So the idea that there would be anything within the angelic world worthy of worship is totally unbiblical. You only worship the creator, and Jesus Christ is the One who created the angelic world and all the authority that exists within the angelic world. We appreciate why He is firstborn because He is supreme.

Paul has four expressions here - thrones, dominions, rulers and authorities. Some have tried to classify them. If you read some writings today, particularly within the charismatic realm, they will talk about thrones in the angelic world. Then they will talk about this is a dominion, this is a ruler, this is an authority. Well, that fits the teaching of chapter 2, not chapter 1. That is false. The Scripture never unfolds that for us. It just lumps it all together here. In fact, Paul will summarize this angelic world in chapter 2, verse 10, by saying, "...He is the head over all rule and authority." Well, did he leave out thrones and dominions? No, because the point here is not to give us a classification but to prepare for the false teachers who will come. Whatever kind of authority structure you might conceive of in the angelic world was created by Him, so it is under His ultimate rule and authority. That is the point being made. So there is no room for worship of angels or exaltation of angelic spirit beings.

7. Angelic Beings aren't to be Feared

Furthermore, believer, there is no place for the fear of angelic beings. There are all kinds of things like binding strongholds and binding Satan. I worship and deal with the One who is supreme over that whole realm. Books are being promoted within the evangelical church about what we learn from talking to demons and how to cast out demons. I deal with the One who is supreme over all that. Don't bother me with angelic stuff. I want to know what the Scripture teaches about angels, but I am not interested in what men have devised about this. We know the One who is supreme over it all. So do I have any fear of the demonic world? None. Do I have respect for the demonic world? Much. But fear? None. I know the One who is supreme. He created it all. And any authority that exists in that realm or in any other realm was created by Him. He is supreme over it all.

So do you understand the finality of the supremacy of Christ in relation to creation? There is no excuse for the believers at Colossae to be confused and sidetracked. And there is even less excuse for believers today to be confused and sidetracked about this. Yet it happens all the time. Why? We are ignorant regarding the supremacy of Christ relating to creation. And that includes the invisible as well as the visible world and realm.

There is a completeness about this, and we could go on and on about the details. I have to give you one more example. Verse 16: "For by Him all things were created..." Aorist tense. It states the fact of its creation. It was created by Him. Now pick up at the end of verse 16: "...all things have been created..." That's perfect tense. And perfect tense denotes something that happened in the past, but the results continue on. He not only created it, but you understand that all things had been created, and the results of their having been created by Him continue on. As we'll see in verse 17, He's not a God who created and withdrew. His creation continues in its relationship to Him as creator. The details that God unfolds in His words are marvelous.

Verse 17 really summarizes what Paul said in verses 15 and 16, but stretches the envelope out for us even further. "He is before all things and in Him all things hold together." Now you understand the all things includes everything on earth, everything in heaven, everything visible, everything invisible. The only thing not included is God Himself. So when the cults want to take me to Colossians chapter 1:15, do I scratch my head and say, "Oh, the firstborn of all creation, that means He was born first among creation?" I should be confused? Those who are in total spiritual darkness are confused on this, but we as believers ought never to be confused.

8. 'I Am' Precedes Creation

"He is before all things..." This also sets Him apart from His creation. He's not part of the creation, He precedes creation. John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." He was in the beginning with God because He is God. It couldn't be any clearer. "He is before all things..." In a little different context, Jesus said in John 8:58: "...before Abraham was born, I am." That just sent the Jews into shock waves. They understood He was declaring Himself God. I mean, Abraham lived 2,00 years ago and here He is standing here on a piece of ground in Palestine in a human body declaring, "...before Abraham was born, I am." I am. Remember in Exodus when God called Moses? In Exodus 3:13, Moses said he would tell the people that the God of their fathers sent him. But if they asked, Moses wanted to be able to tell them the name of the God who sent him. Verse 15: "God said to Moses, 'I AM WHO I AM;' and He said, 'Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.' Not I was; not I will be, but I am, the eternal God. So He is before all things. Thus He is superior to all things.

"...and in Him all things hold together." This is a verse that is shocking to us and yet is greatly comforting. What Christ has created, He maintains. There is an order and a stability within the creation. We see brilliant minds that are in spiritual darkness trying to figure out how he complexity of the creation and the universes all happened. Some worry if a planet or a piece of a planet is going to come crashing into this earth and shatter it into pieces No, it won't happen. Why? I know the One who sustains it all, who holds it all together. By the way, He's the one who created it. He did not create it and then withdraw and let it just happen. You note there's something personal about this. " Him..." - there's that preposition in that I said was translated by at the beginning of verse 16 - " Him all things hold together." Within Himself is the power that sustains and maintains the creation that He has brought into existence. This is the same thing as Hebrews 1:3 says: He "...upholds all things by the word of His power."

Should you and I as believers rest in complete security? I should wring my hands? Will there ever be a chain reaction from a cataclysmic nuclear explosion that will bring the world to dust and nothing else? Nope, nope. My God is sovereign; He created it all. "Yes, but!" That's where we are, aren't we? When we get into our daily lives as Christians, we're at the "yes, but!" stage. Yes, He created it. Yes, He was sovereign. Yes, He is sovereign. "But!" He maintains it. He's in control of it all - everything, all things. We use the order of the planets as an example. And we know about splitting the atom and all. Aren't you glad He's in control of the details? That becomes very important to me. I have a life that's comprised of a lot of details. But you know what? It's all part of His creation, visible and invisible. And He's in control of it all.

Now this is the preparation for what we'll talk about next. Jesus Christ has supremacy over all creation, but Paul is going to move right in to talk about He has supremacy in the context of redemption or reconciliation. This One who is supreme over all creation is supreme in the context of reconciliation. And the creating God will be the reconciling God. The God who is supreme in creation will be supreme in bringing about the reconciliation of His creation to Himself in the person of the One who created it and sustains it. He thus redeemed it and makes possible its reconciliation. What a God we have! What a Savior we have!

You know, a lot of the trouble we get into as Christians stems from the problems the Colossians were facing. They didn't hold tightly enough to the truth concerning the absolute supremacy of Christ. I must hold on to that. I can never loosen my grip even a little bit. He is supreme. Do I understand everything that happens? No. Do I have an explanation for everything that takes place? No. Are there times in my thinking where I say, "God this is not the way I would do it." Yes. Aren't you glad I'm not God? I'm glad you're not. I don't know you all exceptionally well, but I know you well enough to know you're enough like me that I wouldn't want you to be God. I'm glad He's God. Yes, there are times I say, "Lord, I don't know. I don't understand. Quite frankly, at this point in my walk I don't even appreciate it. I'm just holding on to the fact that You are supreme." The One I call Savior is Lord over all creation. Don't try to keep me awake at night with fears about the devil and demons. I know the Creator. I know the Sustainer.

In fact, when we get into the next portion we'll find out He is our Redeemer. What security. What blessing. What joy. You have to deal with Jesus Christ. You cannot avoid it. Have you experienced the redemption that the supreme Christ has provided? It's the only redemption that is available. He is the person you must deal with. You must come to grips with the fact that the One who created you, the One who is sovereign over all, says you are a sinner who is under condemnation and on your way to hell. That is truth - not because I said it, but because He said it. That is reality. He says that He has provided salvation through the death and resurrection of the One who is known as the Son of God. He is the Savior. Jesus said in John 8:14, "...for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."

That is it. You either believe in Him or you die in your sins. That means to die guilty and condemned. We see this One who is supreme over all creation, the One who is supreme in reconciliation, is the One that John chapter 5 tells us is the supreme judge of all mankind. You cannot avoid dealing with Jesus Christ. But this One who is supreme, who has absolute authority and power, has said if you will turn from your sin and believe in Him as your Savior, He will forgive you. He will cleanse you. He will cause you to be born into His family, to be born again. Wouldn't you think every man, woman and child would be falling on their knees? My sin-cursed heart doesn't want to believe it. And the god of this world wants to keep me in darkness so I will not believe it. But God, in His grace, has brought you to hear it, and I trust by His grace you will believe it. Let's pray together.

Father, we praise You for the wonder of the work that has been done in Jesus Christ. There is so much that goes beyond the comprehension of our finite minds - the eternal God who has eternally existed in three persons, yet is one God. Lord, our minds do not comprehend all of that, and they don't need to. We must simply believe that You are God and we are created beings. Thank You for that absolute supremacy of Christ over all. Lord, may it be the joy of our heart to bow before Him, to worship Him, to exalt Him and to hold tightly to Him as the One who is not only supreme over creation, but who is supreme in our redemption. Lord, You are the God who knows all. You know us as we are, gathered here today. Lord, if any do not know the Savior of whom we have been speaking, by Your grace may they turn to Him today. Lord, for those are here and profess to know Him but are not honoring Him by their walk and who perhaps have been confused and unsettled, Lord, may they find that confident assurance that comes from laying hold of the truth with a firm, unshakable gift. We give You the praise, in Christ's name, amen.

Scripture quotations are from the New American Standard Bible, © Lockman Foundation 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977. All quotations used by permission.

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This file was converted from Adobe PDF format to HTML by Tony Capoccia of Bible Bulletin Board (BBB). Permission was received from Indian Hills Community Church for the conversion and the posting on BBB. Our gratitude to the Holy Spirit for a church that preaches/teaches messages that are bold and doctrinally sound—they are so needful to this generation.

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