Colossians #8

Delusion Through Persuasive Speech

“This I say that no one may delude you with persuasiveness of speech” (Col. 2:4). This is a sober warning for the consequences of being deluded (deceived) in this instance would be eternal in its nature and duration for to be deceived is no excuse with God. Jesus warned “If the blind guide the blind, both shall fall into a pit” (Mt. 15:14).

Paul did not want the Colossians to be deceived. He wanted them to understand the truth he had just written. That truth? “…that they may know the mystery of God, even Christ, in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge hidden.” (Col. 2:2f).

There was much emphasis upon “hidden wisdom” in the pagan world when Paul lived. There were great boasts of the superior wisdom contained in the mysteries of paganism which only those initiated into such could supposedly learn. In both this and the Ephesian letter Paul shows that true knowledge is found in Christ and Paul’s consuming desire was to be found in Christ and to “know him” (Phil. 3:9, 10). Christians know Christ is the “way, the Truth and the Life” (Jn. 14:6). Christians know Christ is our Redeemer, the propitiation four our sins, our advocate with the Father (1 Jn. 2:1f). Christians know our hope of resurrection and eternal life is found in Christ (Jn. 11:25f). Still, although Christians know these things, there is possibility we might be deluded by “persuasiveness of speech” and turn away from that which we have learned. Such would be disastrous!

So, he adds, “Take heed lest there shall be any one that maketh spoil of you through his philosophy and vain deceit, after the traditions of men, after the rudiments of the world and not after Christ” (Col. 2:8f). to “make spoil” literally means to plunder, to rob one of his prize. This plundering would occur to those Colossians through the philosophy (of men), false teaching of vain deceit, empty promises. It would come through the traditions of men and the rudiments (elements) of the world–things having little value, worthless as compared to the treasures of Christ. All these aforementioned things were “not after Christ”. Men are “spoiled”; “robbed”, plundered by the philosophy of men. In contrast we are made full (complete) in Christ (Col. 2:1). Therefore, as we have received Jesus the Lord, we must walk in Him. Some have “silver tongues” and the “merchandise” they extol seems priceless, but is worthless. Hear no one who would turn you away from the wisdom found in Christ our Lord!

Jim McDonald

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