Sermon Series from Aug - Nov
'Knowing Jesus and doing His Will'
Part 2: Through the Counsel of Paul


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Sermon for 18/19 Sep
Suffering for the Gospel
Col 1:24-27 • Ds Ti Lian Swan
Reflections

Apr 10/11
Jesus: The Word of Life
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • John 1:1-18
Reflections

Apr 17/18
Jesus: The Lamb of God
Ds Ti Lian Swan • John 1:29-34
Reflections

Apr 24/25
Jesus Turns Water into Wine
Revd Christopher Chan • John 2:1-11
Reflections

May 1/2
Called to True Worship
Revd William Chee • John 4:5-24
Reflections

May 8/9
Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • John 6:1-15
Reflections

May 16
Jesus: The Bread of Life
Revd Christopher Chan • John 6:25-51
Reflections

May 23
Life in the Spirit
Ds June Tan • John 7:37-39
Reflections

May 30
Jesus: The Light of the World
Revd Daniel Lim • John 8:12-20
Reflections

Jun 6
Jesus: The Great Healer
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • John 9:1-11
Reflections

Jun 13
Jesus: The Door of the Sheep
Revd Christopher Chan • John 10:1-9
Reflections

Jun 20
Jesus: The Good Shepherd
Revd Joshua Raj • John 10:10-18
Reflections

Jun 27
Jesus and the Father are One
Revd William Chee • John 10:22-39
Reflections

Jul 4
Jesus: The Resurrection and the Life
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • John 11:1-27
Reflections

Jul 11
Jesus: The Messianic King
Revd Christopher Chan • John 12:12-19
Reflections

Jul 18
Jesus: The Servant King
Revd Moses Israeli • John 13:1-17
Reflections

Jul 25
Jesus: The Way, the Truth, and the Life
Revd Daniel Lim • John 14:1-14
Reflections

Aug 1
Jesus: The True Vine
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • John 15:1-11
Reflections

Aug 8
Jesus: The Second Person of the Trinity
Revd Christopher Chan • John 16:12-15
Reflections

Aug 15
Jesus: God of Second Chances
Revd Joshua Raj • John 21:15-19
Reflections

Sermon Series on Colossians
Apostle Paul wrote this letter around AD 62 to the Church in Colosse, a small city in Asia Minor (present-day Turkey). He was in chains in prison but he wrote to set the Colossian believers free. They were in bondage to a strange mix of beliefs. The false teachers took parts of the Bible (like observing the Sabbath, food laws and festivals) plus teaching about Jesus but mixed this with pagan thinking. They taught that it was not God who created the world but instead it was mystical beings called aeons. These aeons lived on other planets and needed to be worshipped and placated. What is more, they taught that Jesus was neither God nor man but an aeon! To counter this, Colossians shows:

1.  Jesus is fully God and fully man
2.  Jesus is the image of the unseen God
3.  Jesus is supreme in all creation.

Let us press on to a deeper life in Christ as we study Colossians together. He is all we need and in Him we are complete!

Aug 21/22
Bearing Fruit in Every Good Work
Revd William Chee • Col 1:3-10
Reflections

Aug 29
Strengthened for Joyful Endurance
Ds June Tan • Col 1:11-14
Reflections

Sep 4/5
The Pre-eminence of Christ
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • Col 1:15-20
Reflections

Sep 11/12
Unwavering Faith
Revd Christopher Chan • Col 1:21-23
Reflections

Sep 18/19
Suffering for the Gospel
Ds Ti Lian Swan • Col 1:24-27
Reflections

Sep 26
Labouring to Build Up the Church
Revd Daniel Lim • Col 1:28-2:3
Reflections

Oct 2/3
Rooted and Built Up in Christ
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • Col 2:4-8
Reflections

Oct 9/10
Alive in Christ
Revd Christopher Chan • Col 2:9-15
Reflections

OCT 16/17
Transformed from the Inside Out
Revd Moses Israeli • Col 3:1-17
Reflections

OCT 23/24
Christian Living as Husband and Wife
Revd William Chee • Col 3:18-19
Reflections

Oct 31
Christian Living as Children and Parents
Revd Canon Lewis Lew • Col 3:20-21
Reflections

NOV 6/7
Christian Living in Our Place of Work
Ds Ti Lian Swan • Col 3:22-4:1
Reflections

NOV 13/14
Open Doors for the Gospel
Revd Christopher Chan • Col 4:2-4
Reflections

NOV 20/21
Wisdom in Our Witness
Ds June Tan • Col 4:5-6
Reflections

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Bearing Fruit in Every Good Work

Colossians 1:3-10
SynopsisIn Colossians 1:1, Paul addressed the believers in Colossae as saints and faithful, seemingly to suggest that they have arrived and need not do anything. Yet, as we look at Paul's thanksgiving and prayer from vv3-10, we notice that the Colossian believers have not been dormant or static since the day they believed. Instead, they have been active in their faith and their love because of the hope they have.

On top of that, Paul prays for them that they walk worthily and live pleasingly to the Lord and may be fruitful in every good work and increase in their knowledge of God. From all these, we learn that the Christian life is not one of stagnation but of growth; not one of barrenness but fruitfulness. The true understanding of the gospel and the knowing and doing of God's will are powerful and effective and will transform saints and bear fruit.
Reflection In many of Paul's letters and this letter to the Colossians, Paul calls believers as saints and sees them as faithful. This means you are saints and faithful! How do you feel about this? What can you say about this?
Reflection Is there something in your fellow believers' lives that you can give thanks to God for when you pray for them? What are these? Can you tell them to encourage them?
Reflection Paul sees the hope that is in the gospel as powerful enough to produce faith and love. This can be seen in the lives of the Colossians believers. Share with one another how you can also experience this power of the gospel.
Reflection Paul prays for the Colossian believers that they may know the will of God so that they may live worthy, pleasing, and fruitful lives. What are you doing to know the will of God more so that you may live worthy, pleasing, and fruitful lives?
 
 
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The Word of Life

Reflection 1 Jesus the Son of God, the divine creator of Heaven and Earth, came into our world and paid for the penalty of sin on our behalf, and God made us co-heirs with Christ.
Reflect on this and share with one another what that truly means to you.
Reflection 2 Just as Christ is the Light of Life, how can we be like Christ, and be the light to our world?
Share some active steps you will take personally, as a CG, and as a family in this season.
Prayer Pray for one another: for God to restore in us the thirst and hunger for a deeper intimacy with him in this season.
David prayed, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation” (Psalm 51:12).
 
 
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The Lamb of God

Synopsis This week, we look into knowing Jesus as the Lamb of God who willingly gave His life as a sacrifice for the sin of the world. In Isaiah 53:1-7, Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled by Jesus. The Suffering Servant in Isa 53 is likened to a lamb led to the slaughter. God’s arm of deliverance is not a strong, forceful and charismatic leader but a lamb, despised and rejected by men, who carried our griefs and sorrows, who was wounded and crushed for our sins. He identified fully with our humanity (sheep gone astray) to die a substitutionary death in our place (alludes to the OT sacrificial system). Out of His great love for us, He paid the price to secure our salvation. The risen Christ has mandated The Great Commandment & The Great Commission for His Church. May we love Him as He loved us by doing His will today!
Reflection 1 What do you think the Son of God had to forgo, suffer and endure as the Lamb of God to secure your salvation?
How would you respond specifically to such amazing love and grace? How would you treasure the benefits of salvation i.e. full & free access to God, the gift of the Holy Spirit, son-ship/daughter-ship, etc.?
Reflection 2 What do you learn about God’s holiness and mercy in regard to sin?
How does that change the way you will deal with sin in your life? How does that change the way you will respond to the sin of others inflicted on you? In both instances, share your specific struggles.
Reflection 3 The risen Christ has mandated The Great Commandment & The Great Commission, for His Church.
How have you fared in obeying these mandates? What must you deal with in order to fulfill Christ’s mandates for you?
 
 
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Jesus Turns Water into Wine

Synopsis In John 2:1-11, Mary and the servants offer us a wonderful example of how we should seek God in times of need: bring our needs to him, leave things in his hands, and be ready to do whatever he tells us. Although God often meets our present needs, he wants to do much more than that: he points us to the fulfilment of all his promises in the age to come, a blessing symbolised by the imagery of abundant wine (see Amos 9:13-15).
Reflection 1 Why do we find it difficult to do whatever God tells us, and what does this reveal about how well we know him?
Reflection 2 How should our anticipation of the fulfilment of God’s promises in the coming age shape the way we live our lives in the present age?
 
 
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Called to True Worship

Synopsis Worship is always the longing of the human heart even though the heart may be crowded with sin. This is because we were all made to worship. Thus the Samaritan woman’s question was genuine and in Jesus’ answer to her, he reveals the where, the who and the how of worship. In saying that God is spirit and we must worship in spirit and truth, Jesus tells us that it is in him the Son (where), we worship the Father (who) with our spirit by the power and truth of the Holy Spirit (how).
Reflection 1 In the gospel of John, who is the Father and how do we become sons of the Father so that we may worship the Father?
Reflection 2 Why do we need faith and truth to worship God? Does that mean that there is no need for our minds and senses and liturgy and rituals in the worship of God?
Reflection 3 Review and go through our liturgy and note who we worship (Father) and through whom worship goes to God (Son) and who enables us in worship (Spirit)?
 
 
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Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

Synopsis The feeding of the 5000 by our Lord Jesus Christ is one of two miracles captured in all four gospels and the other being the resurrection account. This amazing miracle took place in an open area and was witnessed by 15000 to 20000 men, women and children who ate and were filled. Jesus does this so that the crowd might believe in him and by believing receive the gift of eternal life. Unfortunately, some choose not to believe. They did not believe, not because of the lack of evidence, but because of the lack of will.
Reflection 1 Read the four accounts in Matthew 14:13-21, Mark 6:32-44, and Luke 9:10-17. How are the accounts similar and how are they different?
Reflection 2 What is the significance of the 12 baskets full of left-overs? Share with one another one experience or incident when God provided more than you needed? What is the faith lesson you have learned from this miracle account?
 
 
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Jesus: The Bread of Life

Synopsis Jesus declared that he is the Bread of Life who gives eternal life to all who come to him, satisfying their spiritual hunger and thirst forever. Physical food, though necessary for our survival, is less important than spiritual food; we must seek continual spiritual nourishment and labour for the food that endures to eternal life.
Reflection 1 Why do we tend to prioritise physical food over spiritual food even though we might understand that the latter is more important?
Reflection 2 What practical steps will we take for our spiritual nourishment? How can we hold each other accountable and spur one another on in these areas?
 
 
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Life in the Spirit

SynopsisJesus made a public appearance at the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem (Jn 7) even though His life was in danger from religious leaders intent on killing Him. He risked His life to declare this important message: “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them." Jesus is the One who baptises us in the Holy Spirit (Lk 3:16), symbolised by rivers of living water. This baptism in the Holy Spirit enables believers to live life in the Spirit.
Reflection 1 Discuss why the Feast of Tabernacles was the perfect time for Jesus to speak about life in the Spirit.
Reflection 2 Share your experiences of the Holy Spirit. What can you do to grow in your knowledge and love of the Holy Spirit? 
 
 
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The Light of the World

SynopsisWhen Jesus announced that He is the Light of the world, He was revealing himself as the long awaited Messiah who has come to show His people the way out of the terrible darkness of sin and into the glorious presence of God. This has to be the best news that anyone could ever receive especially for those who were at the Feast of the Tabernacles and anticipating the coming of the Messiah. However, our passage today shows us how this astonishing announcement could also be easily ignored by some because of their spiritual blindness.
Reflection What are the things in our lives that can potentially blind us from realizing our true spiritual condition or from recognizing our daily need for Jesus and His Light in our lives?
Reflection The call to follow the Light of the world involves an ongoing trust in Jesus and obedience to His Word in all circumstances. Share about the challenges you face today and/or the help you have received in responding to this call to follow the Light.
Reflection What practical steps can we take as individuals and as a CG to shine and point others to the Light of the world?
 
 
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The Great Healer

SynopsisJesus described himself as the “Light of the World” in Chapters 8 and 9. The idea of light is often used in the Scripture as a symbol of spiritual knowledge. It is with this new spiritual knowledge that those who believe in Jesus receive the “light of life” (John 8:12), or salvation in Christ, and are healed of spiritual blindness. Because of the Father’s love for mankind, He gave us His Son to bring salvation to all those who believe in Him (John 3:16).

Now that we know what Jesus came for, we want to look at another interesting development in the story. Jesus approached the man again after he had received healing. Jesus asked him, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” (John 9:35). The man openly admitted that he wanted to believe, but did not know who he should turn to. When our Lord identified Himself as the Son of Man, the man responded with faith, “Lord, I believe” (John 9:38). The man’s lack of knowledge of the Saviour was echoed by St. Paul, “but how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? (Rom 10:14).
Reflection Do you believe in Jesus Christ? Share in your group some ways you may be struggling to believe in Jesus Christ.
(We will respect that every one of us has personal struggles with the issue of faith. We must not judge, instead, we should encourage one another.)
Reflection Are you making good use of your time on earth to be witnesses for Christ? What are some difficulties you face in sharing the gospel with others? Discuss how you can increase personal witness in your daily routine.
Reflection We are about six months away from Christmas. As a cell group, begin to pray and plan how you would like to reach out to your pre-believing friends this Christmas.
 
 
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The Door of the Sheep

SynopsisJesus said: 'I am the door, and if anyone enters by me, he will be saved.' He is the means of access into God's sheepfold, the community of the redeemed people of God. Jesus also watches over the sheep and keeps them safe. It is not enough, however, for us merely to be in the sheepfold. We must know the voice of our shepherd and listen to and follow him.
Reflection What was it like when the gospel first became real to you?
Reflection How can you use your personal experience to encourage others to (1) enter God's sheepfold, and (2) know Jesus's voice and follow him?
 
 
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The Good Shepherd

SynopsisIn ancient times, shepherds are not held in high regard in society as their work was thought to be menial, without many responsibilities and for the uneducated.

But Jesus uses shepherding as a metaphor to explain how important a shepherd's job is as Jesus introduces Himself as The Good Shepherd.
Reflection What are some characteristics of Jesus you can identify as He refers to Himself as the good shepherd? Which of these characteristics do you need to place more trust in?
Reflection We frequently miss out on the blessings that Jesus came to offer us. What made you miss out on these blessings? What does it mean to you to live a life of abundance?
 
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Jesus and the Father are One

SynopsisThe Jews were keen to know who Jesus was. Yet, despite his words and works, they still did not know him and were still asking about his identity. One reason could be that they were not receiving the answer they desired. Jesus, however, gives a deeper reason, simply, because they are not his sheep.

This is evidenced by their lack of faith; a sign they are not his sheep. Which is unfortunate, because as his sheep, he gives them eternal life and he keeps them to eternal life. Now as to why he can give and keep, is tied not just that he is the Christ, but that he is one with the Father, one in purpose and works and profoundly one as the Son of God and being truly God! Only the Son of God can give and keep us to eternal life. So we must come to him as the Christ and the Son of God.
Reflection Why do you think people fail to know who Jesus is today? What are some of the reasons?
Reflection Think again who is Jesus Christ to you? Does your life and action truly reflect who you say he is?
Reflection What do you understand by the word eternal life, firstly from your own thoughts, then look at some of these verses to help you (John 3:16, 36, 4:14, 5:24, 6:54, 10:10; 14:6, 17:3; 1 John 5:20). Are you really excited to have eternal life?
Reflection What are the implications of Jesus being one with the Father? What is the impact of that to your life?
 
 
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The Resurrection and the Life

SynopsisThere are 7 “I AM” sayings in the Gospel of John. This fifth “I AM” saying “I am the resurrection and the life” is perhaps the most provoking one out of the seven. It was something that the Jews could not accept and hence plot to kill Jesus (vv.45-57). However, in this fifth “I AM” saying, our Lord gives us a new definition of “What is Life?”

Jesus said, “Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die” (vv. 25-26). For most of us, our views of life on earth can be different things, but the Lord calls us to focus our attention on the eternal aspect of life.

In v. 25 – Jesus talks about eternal life – for those who believes in him, though we die physically, we are assured that we will live eternally because Jesus Christ has overcome the power of death. In v. 26 – Jesus talks about being spiritually alive. Unless we believe in him, we remain spiritually dead. When we are spiritually dead, sin and darkness creep into our lives. But by believing in Jesus, we become spiritually alive, and this is how we are to live our life on earth as disciples of Christ.
Reflection How are you keeping your spiritual flame alive and burning? How can we encourage one another in our cell group to keep our spiritual flame burning?
Reflection God has called us to focus on what is eternal. What does that mean to you? How should we live out our lives on earth and focus on what is eternal?
 
 
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The Messianic King

SynopsisWhen Jesus rode into Jerusalem, the crowd welcomed him with much fanfare, expecting him to set them free from Roman rule. But he wasn't the kind of king they had in mind: he would bring about a different kind of salvation, and his kingdom is one of peace and not war. As our humble king, Jesus calls us to be humble in our service to him and others.
Reflection Do you find it easy or difficult to be a 'donkey' for Jesus, and why?
Reflection In what areas of your life are you seeking to fulfil your own will instead of God's?
(As this is a rather personal question, cell groups may wish to spend some time in private reflection instead of discussing it together.)
 
 
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The Servant King

John 13:1-17
SynopsisThe central story of the Old Testament is the story of slavery and liberation; from the world and sin to the worship of One True God, YHWH

The great Passover event and meal commemorates this liberation of God’s people who were slaves in Egypt for 400 years to worship the True God who breaks their chains and overcomes the master-slave dynamic

With this context in mind, in the midst of Passover meal, Jesus gets up from the table, takes off his outer garment and ties a towel around himself, then he pours water into a basin and begins to wash the disciples’ feet and wipe them with the towel that is wrapped around him. Jesus strongly rebukes Peter and us alike that we will have no inheritance with him if we do not allow him to wash our feet

By embodying his message in his action, Jesus has set his disciples an example of the washing of feet as a command to love, serve one another in worship of God. In that following his example and doing it, it will make us true worshippers of the One True God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Reflection What feeling did the action of Jesus evoke in you? Or what experiences did it remind you of?
Reflection If you were Peter, what would your response be and why do you think Peter found it so hard to let Jesus wash his feet?
Reflection What can you do to 'wash the feet' of another this week, and how can you make it a part of you?
 
 
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The Way, the Truth, and the Life

John 14:1-14
SynopsisJohn 14:1-14 is a continuation of the conversation between Jesus and His disciples at the upper room from John 13. At this point, Jesus has just mentioned to the disciples about the betrayal and denial that some of them would commit against him and also His departure from them. This bad news is definitely the reason why their hearts were troubled.

Today our hearts may also be easily troubled by the news around us. Young people are not spared from this common disease of a troubled heart as well. However, in John 14:1-14 Jesus brings the attention of those with troubled hearts to Himself who is the way, the truth and the life. And Jesus calls them to stop letting their hearts be troubled, start believing in Him, and start doing His work.
Reflection How does knowing and believing in who Jesus is help those whose hearts are troubled? You may wish to share a personal experience.
Reflection What hinders you from placing your trust in Jesus more than in anything or anyone else? You may also wish to share how John 14:1-14 has encouraged you in this area.
Reflection Why is it important for us as believers in Christ to stop worrying and start working on what Jesus has mentioned in John 14:12?
Reflection In what ways can you participate in the "greater works" through your current vocation e.g. student, NSF, employee/ employer, homemaker etc.?
 
 
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Jesus the True Vine

John 15:1-11
SynopsisJesus said, “I am the true vine” (John 15:1). The ultimate success of our Christian life as disciples of Jesus Christ is totally dependent upon our relationship with our Lord and Saviour. When we abide in Him, we are promised that He will also abide in us – a relationship that will be everlasting. We are also assured of spiritual fruitfulness and the experience of His power. Lastly, when we abide in Him and observe all that Jesus has commanded us, we are promised the full joy of Christ Jesus in our life.
Reflection Why do you think it is so important for Christians to produce spiritual fruits? What must we do in order to bear much fruit? (Read John 15:5).
Reflection In your own ways and words, describe what and how it may look like for a believer to “abide in Jesus”? Share your personal experience.
Action Make a commitment as a cell group, to spur one another in growing deeper in our relationship with Christ, and to live out an authentic faith.
 
 
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The Second Person of the Trinity

John 16:12-15
SynopsisThe doctrine of the Trinity is fundamental to the Christian faith, and we must seek to better understand it even though we will not be able to do so completely. Our Christian hope finds its basis in the work of the Trinity, and the love that flows between the divine Persons has been poured into our hearts, enabling us to love God and love our neighbour.
Reflection Have we neglected communion with God?
Reflection Have we neglected communion with fellow believers?
Reflection Would we reach out to those who aren’t experiencing such communion (both Christians and non-Christians) and invite them to do so?
 
 
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God of Second Chances

John 21:15-19
SynopsisHave you ever felt like you have messed up so badly that there is no way you can come back from it? If you have, let Peter’s reinstatement by Jesus be an encouragement to you.

Peter comes before Jesus, and it is presumed that he is aware of his failure to stand by Jesus during His arrest. Jesus focuses on Peter’s capacity to love and not on his failures. He does not admonish him for his betrayals. Peter is given a second chance and reinstated, not just back to ministry but also in his relationship with Jesus.

Peter went from the shame of his denial of Christ to becoming the rock on which Christ’s church was founded. All because Jesus is the God of Second Chances.
Reflection What are you holding on to from your past that makes you think God would never forgive you, nor take you back? Alternatively, share how Jesus gave you a second chance and restored you.
Reflection What does love have to do with being restored to the service of Christ?
 
 
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Strengthened for Joyful Endurance

Col 1:11-14
Synopsis In the natural there are vaccines to guard us against the worst impact of Covid-19. How wonderful if there could be a spiritual vaccine to protect us against every bad situation in life. Praise God, there is! In Col 1 Paul prays this for believers: Being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy (Col 1:11).

From this verse we see there is The Preventive (the spiritual vaccine by which we can face any situation in life) and The Power (by which we receive the spiritual vaccine).

1. The Preventive
Just as vaccines are made up of ingredients, so too this Preventive has 3 ingredients: Being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy (Col 1:11).

Endurance and patience are very closely linked but are not exactly the same. GB Caird, an English theologian and Biblical scholar (1917 – 1984) explained it this way:
Endurance is the refusal to be daunted by hard times.
Patience is the refusal to be upset by perverse people.


Hard times and perverse people. This sums up every adverse life situation. Yet these 2 qualities are not enough. We need a third, which is joy. Without joy, life would be a tragedy. But God has made us to be more than conquerors. A major reason why we can have joy is because we are never alone. Jesus has promised to always be with us: “behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Mt 28:20).

2. The Power
Being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy (Col 1:11).

To get the Preventive, we first need the Power. No one can match the power of God. In Greek the word for power is dunamis, from which we get the English word, dynamite. God’s mighty power raised Jesus from the dead. And it is power that God wants to give us. As Jesus said – But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

Have you received the power of the Holy Spirit? We need His power so that we may experience joyful endurance as we face the uncertainties of the future.
Reflection What hard times and perverse (difficult or very hard to get along with) people do you encounter in your life? Have you experienced joyful endurance?
Reflection Share your experiences of the Holy Spirit. Do you desire to go deeper in your relationship with Him?
 
 
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The Pre-eminence of Christ

Col 1:15-20
Synopsis Who is Jesus Christ? This question has been widely debated since the days of the early church and has not ceased being discussed. What about you? Who do you say Jesus is? Col. 1:15-20 tells us that — Jesus Christ is the perfect image of God (15a), and He is “first-born of all creation” (15b), and “first-born from the death” (18). Jesus is certainly worthy of our wholehearted worship because he is pre-eminent. The Greek word for pre-eminent means to hold the highest rank (supreme or supremacy), or to have the first place.
Reflection Within your cell group, take a few minutes to share some observations that you made about Jesus Christ from reading Colossians 1, John 1, and Ephesians 1. According to these scriptural references, share why you think Jesus is absolutely worthy of your worship. What are some specific attributes of Jesus that caught your attention?
Reflection Col. 1:18 describes Jesus as the head of the church. What does this mean to you?
Reflection Col. 1:19 declares God’s pleasure in Jesus Christ. Like Jesus, share how God is leading you to glorify Him and to proclaim Him, with your time, talent, and treasure?
 
 
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Unwavering Faith

Col 1:21-23
Synopsis Reminding us of our past hostility towards God, Paul draws our attention to the divine work of salvation and sanctification that will be brought to glorious completion if we hold fast to the faith. He stresses both the object of Christ’s work and our corresponding obligation.
Reflection How has your life been transformed through the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit?
Reflection How can such testimonies spur us on as a community to hold fast to the faith together?
 
 
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Suffering for the Gospel

Col 1:24-27
Synopsis Paul could rejoice in his sufferings for the gospel because:
(1) His suffering was for the benefit of others.
(2) His suffering filled up what was lacking in Christ’s afflictions.

Col. 1:24 is a difficult verse to interpret and there are several interpretations (2 are highlighted).

In the context of the sermon text, particularly v. 25, interpretation taken is that Paul filled up what was lacking in Christ’s afflictions by making God’s word fully known geographically, taking it to the ends of his known world.

“The lack is the gap of the sufferings between the present reach of the gospel and the suffering necessary to establish a gospel presence among all the Gentiles.” (Phil Thompson)
Reflection What has today’s message taught you about suffering for the gospel?
Reflection How have you suffered for the gospel and how did you feel?
Reflection What would it mean for you personally, to “fill up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions”?