Posted by: Pastor J Jacobs on Fri, Aug 12, 2016
1. Turn to Colossians 1:11.
1) Colossians 1:11 is a continuation of the prayer that Paul begins in verses nine and ten.
2) In verses 9 &10 Paul mentions eight things that Christians should pray about.
3) In verse eleven Paul mentions additional things that Christians should pray about.
2. The things that Paul prayed for those of Colossae are things that every generation of Christians should pray for.
3. In this lesson we will discuss the things, from verse eleven, that Paul prayed for on behalf of the Christians at Colossae.
I. FIRST, COLOSSIANS 1:11a TEACHES CHRISTIANS TO PRAY THAT THEY WILL BE “STRENGTHENED WITH ALL MIGHT!”
1. The great problem in life is not usually, in not knowing what to do, but the problem is to be strong enough in our desire and determination to do the things that we know that we should do.
1) If God merely told us what His will was, that might well be a frustrating situation.
2) But God not only tells Christians, in the New Testament what His will is, God also strengthens faithful Christians to be able to perform what He wants Christians to do.
2. Turn to Ephesians 3:20. Ephesians 3:20 teaches that God is able to help Christians do exceedingly abundantly above the things that they are able to ask or think. Ephesians 3:20 says, “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.”
3. From Colossians 1:11 and Ephesians 3:20 Paul teaches Christians that they should pray for God’s strength and might and that we can expect our prayers and even more that what we ask or think to come powerfully to us.
1) Paul is teaching that if we don’t accomplish what God wants us to accomplish, it is not God’s fault.
2) God’s “strength and might” are always greater than the devil.
II. SECOND, COLOSSIANS 1:11b TEACHES CHRISTIANS THAT THEY SHOULD PRAY THAT GOD’S STRENGTH AND MIGHT SHOULD BE PROVIDED FOR THEM “ACCORDING TO GOD’S GLORIOUS MIGHT!”
1. Turn to Ephesians 1:19&20. In Ephesians 1:19&20 Paul prayed a similar prayer for the Christians at Ephesus: Verses 19&20 say, “18, “…that you may know…” 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places.”
1. The first part of V. 19a says, “And what is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe.”
1) The word “power” here in the Greek is “dunimis.” Our English word “dynamite” comes from this.
2) In the next statements Paul refers to what the “spiritual dynamite”, from God, actually is for Christians.
2. The second part of Ephesians 1:19 let’s Christian know that this power is made available for them so that they can accomplish things for God. “according to the working of his mighty power.”
1) The word “working” here means, “divine energy or operative power.”
2) The word “mighty” also means, “manifested strength”.
3) As the prayer continues to unfold we are able to learn of the many ways that God’s “mighty power” is manifested or made know for Christians.
3. Ephesians 1:20a teaches that God wants Christians to know that the same power that raised Christ from the dead is available for them. “Which He worked in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead.”
1) The resurrection is the act above all others and beyond all others that shows the unlimited power and ability of God to do all that he has promised to do for his children.
2) Without the resurrection of Christ, the Christian gospel is stripped of all credibility and relevance for man; and that is why Paul never forgot to include it in the very heart of every message and every letter.
4. Looking back to Colossians 1:11b the words “glorious power” mean basically the same as “mighty power” and “the exceeding greatness of His power” that we have just explained from Ephesians 1:19&20.
5. Christians should pray that they keep fresh in their mind that just as God’s power raised Christ from the dead that that equal power is available to Christians as they strive to bear fruit in every good work.
6. Christians will be victorious if they will keep faithful to God’s word and appeal to God in prayer.
III. THIRD, COLOSSIANS 1:11c TEACHES CHRISTIANS TO PRAY FOR AND EXPECT “PATIENCE” AS A FRUIT OF THEIR FAITHFULLNESS AND PRAYER!
1. “Patience” means steadfast endurance whereby the Christian is able to continue doing right regardless of the hardships and trials.
1) The Greek word for this English word “patience” does not refer to just bowing one’s head down and enduring the difficulties and hard times.
2) This kind of “patience” struggles onward like a running back with tacklers hanging on while he is trying to cross the goal line.
3) This kind of “patience” means not only the ability to bear things but the ability, in bearing them, to turn them into glory. It is a conquering patience.
2. This kind of “patience” [Hupomone] is the ability to deal triumphantly with anything that life can do to us.
3. Turn to James 5:10&11. James 5:10&11 teaches new Testament Christians to look back at the patience of the Old Testament prophets and also at the patience of Job, as they dealt with theirs sufferings and discouragements and yet they struggled onward toward success and victory. James 5:10&11 says, “10 My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience. 11 Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance [or patience] of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.”
4. When things seem unbearable Christians need to pray for God to help them demonstrate the kind of patience that Paul and James speak of.
5. Patiently keep up the struggle as the running back in his effort to get across the goal line, even if he has to drag tacklers with him. Patiently plod on!
IV. FOURTH, COLOSSIANS 1:11d TEACHES CHRISTIANS TO PRAY THAT THEY WILL BE “LONGSUFFERING”!
1. “Longsuffering” is oftentimes spoken of as patience in the English language and sometimes in the Greek language the two words are used interchangeably.
2. However, in the Greek there is a technical difference in the two words.
1) “Longsuffering” [makrothumia] in the Greek, for its basic meaning is being longsuffering or patient with people.
2) “Longsuffering” is the quality of mind and heart which enables us to cope with people in such a way that their unpleasantness and malice and cruelty will never drive us to bitterness, that their unwillingness to learn will never drive us to despair, that their foolishness will never drive us to irritation, and that their unloveliness will never alter our love.
3) “Longsuffering” [makrothumia] is the disposition of character which never loses patience with, belief in and hope for others.
3. Turn to Acts 15:36-41. In Acts 15:36-41 we have the example of Barnabas being more longsuffering with John Mark than Paul. Acts 15:36-41 says, “36 Then after some days Paul said to Barnabas, “Let us now go back and visit our brethren in every city where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how they are doing.” 37 Now Barnabas was determined to take with them John called Mark. 38 But Paul insisted that they should not take with them the one who had departed from them in Pamphylia, and had not gone with them to the work. [Record of this is in Acts 13:13, "Now when Paul and his party set sail from Paphos, they came to Perga in Pamphylia; and John, departing from them, returned to Jerusalem."] 39 Then the contention became so sharp that they parted from one another. And so Barnabas took Mark and sailed to Cyprus; 40 but Paul chose Silas and departed, being commended by the brethren to the grace of God. 41 And he went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.”
1) As time went on the “longsuffering” that Barnabas showed to Mark showed to pay off and develop a stronger character out of Mark.
2) Turn to 2 Timothy 4:9-11. Years later, when Paul wrote 2 Timothy 4:9-11 Paul makes a special request for Mark to come and assist him. 2 Timothy 4:-9-11 says, “9 Be diligent to come to me quickly; 10 for Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world, and has departed for Thessalonica—Crescens for Galatia, Titus for Dalmatia. 11 Only Luke is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is useful to me for ministry.”
3) Another thing that shows spiritual maturity and development for Mark is that Mark wrote the gospel account about Jesus, which wears the name Mark.
4. Each and every Christian needs to pray that God will help them to be “longsuffering” with other people and keep a positive hope for others. Pray for God to help us not give up too quick on others.
5. Our “longsuffering” and willingness to work with others and help them develop may strengthen them like Barnabas strengthened Mark.
V. FIFTH, COLOSSIANS 1:11e TEACHES CHRISTIANS THAT THEY SHOULD PRAY FOR “JOY”!
1. Joy can come for the Christian regardless of the circumstances. Joy, for one reason, will come due to one knowing that they are living right in the sight of God.
1) Turn to Acts 5:40-42. Acts 5:40-42 provides an example of the apostles rejoicing even after they were beaten and threatened. Acts 5:40-42 says, “40 And they [The Jewish leaders in Jerusalem] agreed with him [Gamaliel], and when they had called for the apostles and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. 41 So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name. 42 And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.”
2) Turn to Acts 16:22-25. Acts 16:22-25 contains the example of Paul and Silas rejoicing, through song and prayer, even while they were in prison in Philippi. Acts 16:22-25 says, “22 Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. 23 And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. 24 Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. 25 But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.”
3) Turn to Philippians 4:4. About ten years after Paul was in prison in Philippi Paul was in prison in Rome. Paul writes the letter of Philippians to those of the church at Philippi. In Philippi 4:4 Paul says, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!”
2. The examples demonstrated by the Christians of the first century let Christians in every generation know that the Christian life is not a grim and despondent struggle with events and with people; instead the Christian life is to be a radiant and sunny-hearted attitude to life.
3. The Christian joy is joy in any circumstances. It is important to understand that if joy is not rooted in the soil of suffering, it will turn out to be a shallow type of joy and will soon be gone.
4. It is easy to be joyful when things go well; but genuine Christian radiance is something which all the shadows of life can never quench.
5. The Christian’s prayer should be: ‘Make me, O Lord, patient and victorious over every circumstance; make me longsuffering with every person; and give me the joy which no circumstance and no one will ever take from me.’
1. Prayer is extremely necessary and important in the life of a Christian, however if you are not a Christian the starting place for you is to obey the words of Jesus from Mark 16:16.
2. In Mark 16:16 Jesus says, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.”
1) Jesus is the spokesman of these words.
2) You can trust that if you sincerely believe, repent (as Jesus also says in Luke 13:3) and confess that you believe that Jesus is the Son of God (as Jesus teaches in Matthew 10:32) and obey the command of baptism you will be saved from all your past sins!
3. Whatever you need is, please come to the front as we stand and sing!
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