Positive Words Newsletter
#139 -- 12th July 2007
Expanding your awareness of "the simplicity that is in Christ"
(II Corinthians 11:3)
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Seek, Set, Source (Colossians 3)
[Colossians 3 -- continued from issue 133]
Weíre halfway through the book of Colossians. I think itís a good time to stop and see that chapters one and two had some solid teaching for us on how to live positively in a negative world. Chapters three and four are going to make that practical. And thereís often this balance in Paulís letters, because itís not enough to declare and to defend the positive truth of Godís Word. What we want is for people to also demonstrate it.
We could fill your minds with all kinds of wonderful positive knowledge from Godís Word. We could lay out the principles one by one, but I believe our ministry would fail if we were not generating people who get out there and made it work. People who demonstrate the truth made it happen in their everyday lives.
So weíre coming into the most important part of the book of Colossians, because this is where the rubber meets the road. This is what we have to do to live positively in a negative world.
Letís review where weíve been. We started off by dividing the book into three parts and the first one of those was to get our basics straight. We saw that the Christian is a unique person, and you are unique because you are walking around with Christ in you, the hope of glory. And then we moved on to seeing that we must have positive Christian goals. The number one goal in life is to put God first and to allow Godís will and Word to direct our activities. Then we discovered that Christ was first in everything and unless we put Him first in everything then we cannot really expect his help in our everyday life. Finally we saw the that there was a great secret and that was "Christ in you, the hope of glory".
The second part of our discussion concerned our need to get our heads straight, and in chapter two we found that not only were we alive but we had to stay alert. Thereís other people alive but some of them are asleep on the job or asleep with their hands on the switch. The Bible says there are things we need to beware of. There are people who are trying to drag us down, and we went into that section. It is important to get our head straight. We have to beware of the "isms". There was mysticism, asceticism, and legalism, to name a few "isms".
And now we move on to Colossians chapter three verse one. "If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God." First let me explain the word "if". This is not in a hypothetical sense, itís only "if" in the sense of the argument. It is really saying "since" or "in view of the fact" that you have been risen with Christ. It is an already an established situation. In view of that fact then you should "seek". Underline that word "seek"... "seek the things that are above". Now, Iím not here to give a lesson in English but we all learned that "seek" is a verb, a word of action. Itís something you and I have to do. We are already risen with Christ from our old life to our new life. That happened when we became a Christian, yet Colossians is written to Christians and itís saying to us to "seek"... seek those things which are above. That means spiritual things. So even though you are a Christian, there is some effort necessary to live positively in a negative world. We must seek spiritual values.
Then in verse 2 we need to underline the word "set". So thereís two things so far we have to do: seek spiritual values and set something. "Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth" So thatís how we seek spiritual values. We put them in our minds. We set our minds on spiritual matters. Incidentally, the Greek word for "mind" is nous, a word that was common when I was growing up. We would say a person had nous, common sense, when they knew what to do about a situation. "Set your mind on things that are above." So we must start thinking spiritual things.
Special event: "In Christ, Christ In" seminar with Bill Morgan,
Washington DC area, July 19-21. Hosted by Pastor Don Curtis, Christ Church, 3413 Gough Drive, Waldorf, Maryland. Contact email@example.com or the church on 301-638-7710.
I donít know how many remember the great movie series "Oh, God!" in which George Burns played the part of God. In the second movie he came to this little girl and wanted her to be his marketing manager for the whole earth. She came up with the slogan that was going to get the campaign going and that slogan was "Think God". She had all her friends in grade school to make up posters and put them in shop windows. When everybody woke up the next morning all over town, on the church notice board (much to the disgust of the reverend), on the school blackboards and everywhere it said "Think God", "Think God". When the movie was shown on our local television, the next morning the same thing happened in all our schools, too. On all the blackboards: "Think God", "Think God". Thatís what must do, folk -- "Think God". Set your thoughts, set your mind on things above.
You see, the problem is that while we are Christians, we do live in a material world. We are not yet in heaven -- weíre here on earth and we handle material things every day. The way to live positively in a negative world is to get the eyes of your mind off those limiting material circumstances and get them on our opulent God. Get them on spiritual values where there are no limits. Thatís why Paul says here to "seek" and to "set". Two things that we have to do. And those two things incidentally are still in that area of getting our heads straight. Seek and set. Thatís the message of verses 1 and 2.
And then in verse 3 it says " For you have died...". Did you know youíre already dead? Thatís what the Bible says. "Consider yourselves dead" (Romans 6:11). You are dead "your life is hidden with Christ in God." Thatís how God views you. The old Peter Wade is dead. And all Godís people said "Amen!" You died. And what did God do? God took new life and hid it with Christ. Itís a hidden life. Thatís why the world canít figure out what makes us tick, because itís hidden from them. Itís a life thatís hidden in God. It says your life is hid with Christ in God. And, folk, if thatís where the center of my life is, then Iím in good company. Iím doing what J. Paul Getty said to do in his book How to be rich. Iím rubbing shoulders with the successful, and thereís nobody more successful than our God and Father. Thereís the security we have. "For you have died and your life has been hidden (the text is past tense) with Christ in God."
Then in verse 4, "When Christ who is your life..." There is the "source" of our life. Write the word "source" in the margin. Thatís our life. Our life is Christ. That is why Paul said in Galatians 2:20 that it wasnít him living the life that he was living. He said, "It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me". Christ is our life. When we start living life from a Christ point of view, then you are living it positively even though you might be in a negative world. Now you have the answer to that question "How can I fly like an eagle when I have to work with turkeys all week?" Easy, because you have Christ in you, and Christ is on top of the world, and he wants you to be on top of the world too.
In just four verses we have simple yet profound truth... seek the heavenly, set the mind, and signify, show forth, the source, and there are more "S's" to come! -- Peter Wade.
[To be continued]
DEAD & ALIVE
Our first DVD set is released! Yes, they are on the shelf ready for delivery to you. Based on Romans 6:11, "Likewise, you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (NKJV). There is an introduction and four sessions for a total of 170 minutes of solid Bible teaching. I take you through Romans chapters 6 to 8, with some verses from chapter 5 to show the study background. This series will teach you how to live the victory Christ has already made possible for you.
Selection points are set at approximately every 3 minutes so you can stop and start when you like. Available in NTSC format... PAL users with recent DVD players should have no difficulty in viewing these DVDs.
Go now to http://peterwade.com/resources/ and place your order for this great teaching series.
NTSC DVDs, Region Free, 16:9 format, 170 minutes. Filmed in W-I-D-E-S-C-R-E-E-N theater format, these DVDs will appear as letterboxed on any regular TV set.
"Simplicity in Christ" tour dates
Peter and Vivien Wade will be touring the USA this Fall to teach seminars and hold meetings. Details online at... http://peterwade.com/go/hear .
Tri-state (Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky) "In Christ, Christ In" Seminar at Cincinnati, Ohio -- September 6th to 8th.
East coast friends, "In Christ, Christ In" Seminar at Charleston, West Virginia -- September 20th to 22nd.
One night only! We invite you to Sonoma County, north of the Bay bridge, in Petaluma,Tuesday September 25th
Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Canada, "In Christ, Christ In" seminar in Portland, Oregon -- October 5th to 7th
Also Seattle,WA, "Dead & Alive" seminar -- September 27th and 29th.
Also Grants Pass, Oregon, evening fellowship meeting -- Tuesday October 2nd.
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