See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. (Colossians 2:8-15 NIV)
It has been several weeks since I’ve written anything. That time has been filled with family staying with us as they prepared to go overseas and the Legacy Grandparenting Summit. Spending time with people seemed much more important than writing. When I started to write on this passage I was determined to focus on baptism. This morning as I re-read the passage it is clear to me that this is a secondary issue in what Paul is trying to communicate.
Baptism is important but can easily become about me. I think the focus of this passage is Jesus Christ. Paul makes it clear that Jesus is God in human form. We take this for granted. How often do we really think about what this means? The God who created a universe that is so big that we have a tough time describing its size existed in Jesus. Not just a part of God, but all of God existed in Jesus. I don’t understand how that is possible. Fortunately, I don’t have to understand. I do have to believe that it is true and demonstrate that by being baptized into Christ. Getting wet doesn’t mean anything. Believing that God does something supernatural when I am raised from the water makes all the difference.
I don’t understand how an infinite God can dwell in a finite body. I also don’t understand how Jesus could win the cosmic battle against all the forces of evil by dying on a cross. We love super heroes, men and women who are stronger, faster, and smarter that the forces of evil. They never die and this is supposed to give us hope. I choose to place my hope in Jesus who did die and then defeated death to rise again and make me alive with Him.
For my grandchildren:
Jesus is God. What difference does that make to you?