May 07 2021
Today, Friday May 7
Another Great Combination Colossians 1:3-5 We give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of your love for all the saints; because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel,
Yesterday we talked about the great combination of gratefulness, prayer and faith. Today we want to look at the next combination in this passage that I believe will give us courage, strength and patience in the difficult trials of life. Paul hears about the faith, love and hope of the believers at Colossae from his friend Epaphras and he commends them for having these three wonderful qualities in their lives.
Gene Getz in his books, “The Measure of a Church” and the “Measure of a Man”, points out that if you want to know the level of your spiritual maturity you should look to see the evidence of these three things in your life. And others can see it too!
Notice first that their faith was in a person, the Lord Jesus Christ! How did Epaphras know they had faith? Well, a genuine faith is evidenced by patience, endurance and faithfulness in both the difficult times and the good times. We can’t see a person’s faith but we can see the fruit of it in their life. “Faith without works is a dead faith.”
And the first proof of faith is a love for God and fellow believers. John reminds us in his epistle, I John, that we can’t say we love God and not love our brothers and sisters in Christ. And this kind of agape love can be also seen as we care, as we give, as we sacrifice our time, our resources and our lives for the sake of Christ and others.
Faith, love and then hope! What is hope? Biblical hope is not wishful thinking! The hope we read about in the New Testament is based and built of the reality of truth. Especially the “truth of the Gospel” (v. 5). No matter what happens to us, or around us, we have the assurance and peace that God is in control and He will fulfil every promise He has made in His Word. It’s a hope that rest confidently upon the eternal God and His Word that is laid up forever in heaven.
I pray today that others can see your faith, your love and your hope and they will want the same. And they will be encouraged to follow your witness and trust the Lord for themselves.