CHRIST: THE MYSTERY WE PREACH - PART 4
MONDAY 11 SEPTEMBER 2023
Christ is the mystery we preach; He is the element in which our continuous spiritual maturity takes place. No teaching and admonition in this Kingdom of light has its sphere out of Christ. This is why it is called, "the glorious gospel of Christ", and today we are looking into the word, "maturity" or "perfection" which is specifically a Christian quality.
Reference: Colossians 1:28-29 New International Version (NIV) "He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me."
The next segment discussed in today's article is: "so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ." The NKJV rendering says, "so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ." To present everyone perfect means that no matter how we came to Christ, even with all imperfections, we are the procession of holy men and women, who are being perfected by the Lord.
To that effect, Paul said, "Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God" (2 Corinthians 7:1 NIV). Did you grasp that? We ought to work toward complete holiness by fearing God.
When Jesus says, "You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect" (Matthew 5:48 ESV). On this account: what Jesus took notice of is our need to function like God who represents true perfection. "Therefore we must be perfect", meaning that perfection is the God's standard as we function in His presence and represent His Kingdom.
Question: How do we attain perfection? Jesus Himself made it possible through Ephesians 4:11-13 which reads, "So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip His people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ" (NIV).
Beloved, this work or process of perfecting the saints will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of Christ, that we will be mature as a perfect man in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. This equally means that time has no power over its enduring influence in our Christian life. For instance, King James Bible rendered it in this manner, "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:12), which suggests "a spiritual work in progress."
Although there are further realities to share regarding maturity or perfection in Christ, time will not permit me to expound more of it. For instance, James 1:2-4 talks about the testing of our faith that produces perseverance, which we must encourage and allow to have its full effect, that we may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
James 3:2 (ESV) also talks about a particular sign of reaching perfection or of being a perfect man, which entails keeping your tongue from evil, deceitful and negative talks and using your lips rightly, although I will not go into the details. However, indeed, Christ is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. Stay tuned for part 5. Shalom!
Scripture Reading - 1 Corinthians 2:6; Philippians 3:12; 1 Peter 5:10; Philippians 3:15.
Guided Prayer: Heavenly Father, I thank you for saving me and drawing me to yourself through the only way, the truth and the life, namely Christ. I'm totally engulfed by the sweet and fragrant odour of His name; as a result, I witness for Him by proclaiming His Word; I witness for Him by character - living like Him, manifesting His power, and showing in my life that He reigns forever. Today and always, I walk in perfection and I glow with thankfulness at the thought of Christ at work in me, in Jesus' Name, Amen.