He is Enough

Is Jesus enough to create the world, save me from my sin, and keep me saved in spite of myself?


Contemplating eternity is quite difficult for us. Actually it is near if not totally impossible for our minds to grasp what it means to be eternal. We have a beginning, a middle, and an end. We live from moment to moment. But God does not. He simply is. And grasping that idea is very difficult. But just because it is difficult to grasp does not mean it is untrue. As we continue in our short exegesis and exposition of Colossians 1, lets turn our attention to the final few verses.

 and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven. Colossians 1:18b-20 NASB

He is the beginning

We saw earlier in this passage that Jesus is the Creator of the universe. He existed before anything else and was the cause that other things exist. So is Paul repeating himself here? No, not really. Remember that we must interpret in context what is being said. We must never lift a verse or two out of the context in which it was written. If we do that then we run the risk of misunderstanding what God has for us.

So to what “beginning” is Paul referring? Well Paul just referred to Jesus as the head of the church so it seems natural to take the beginning as referring to the beginning of the church. So Jesus not only is God, not only is He the head of the church, He is the very beginning of the church. So how is he the beginning of the church. Well I can think of a couple of ways this works. First He is the source of the power from which the Church sprang. If Christ had not come and died, there would be no church. Second, He is THE source of the spiritual life of the church. Without Christ, the church is simply a social club. There would be no spiritual importance or purpose to the church.


He is Firstborn…again

Here we go again with the idea of being firstborn. Remember from our previous discussion that the term used for firstborn (prototokos) has less to do with the order as much as it has to do with the rank or importance of an individual. When we read that Jesus is firstborn from the dead, we know that this can not refer to Him being the first to be raised from the dead. Why? Well, did not Jesus Himself raise Lazarus from the dead? Yep, He sure did. So this must refer to the fact that Jesus is the most important person to be resurrected from the dead. And I do think He qualifies for that. So we see in this passage in Colossians 1 that Jesus has supremacy in creation and redemption.

So not only is He creator, He is supreme in redemption. How comforting it is to have a Savior who reigns supreme in the two most important events in history!


He is the Reconciler

Not only has Jesus been named God, chief in the universe, creator, the head and initiator of the church and supreme in redemption, now we see Jesus as the agent of reconciliation. Now I want to draw your attention to this phrase; “…to reconcile all things to Himself…” Some take this to mean that all people will be reconciled to Himself. But that would be universalism and universalism is false. So what does this phrase mean. Well, I may be on a limb here, but I think this may be referring to the eternal state rather than now. Why do I think this? The way this section ends – through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven – seems to leave out those who are not reconciled through His blood. Do you notice that those who are reconciled are those on earth or in heaven. But there are those who are in “outer darkness” and are not part of the earth or heaven. Could this be what Paul is referencing here. Well I think it is at least possible.

Another way to look at this is that reconciliation is not just redemption. This view would take the final judgement as a method to reconcile even those who are not redeemed. Scripture does states that every knee will bow and every tongue will confess Jesus is Lord (Philippians 2:10). Interesting enough, Philippians 2:10 states that this will occur “in heaven, on earth, and under the earth.” Hmmm, maybe I’m on to something here.


Is Jesus enough?

Is Jesus enough to create the word, save me from my sin, and keep me saved in spite of myself? When we think of all Jesus has accomplished on our behalf, we must never forget how He accomplished those things. He accomplished these various things as God would – perfectly, for His glory, and for His purpose.

Since both creation and redemption were initiated by Jesus, we can reject any notion that we are here by chance. We can also know that our redemption is secure since it depends wholly on the character of God  rather than our action.

Now how’s that for being secure!

He Is

This truth – that Jesus is God – should greatly affect us.


Just who is Jesus Christ? What did He look like? What did He do? Oftentimes we brush off these questions with a  simple “He’s God, of course.” This is correct but I wonder if a fuller answer would be more proper.

We have such an answer found in Colossians 1:

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whetherthrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is alsohead of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.  – Colossians 1:15-20 NASB

Lets take a look at these verses and reintroduce ourselves to our Savior, the Incomparable Christ!

The first thing I notice is the use of “He is”. This small two-word phrase controls the discussion Paul is having with the church in Colossae. Paul repeats this phrase throughout this passage in an effort to stress that Jesus is indeed all these things. We don’t just hope He has these qualities…we don’t just want Him to have these qualities…we don’t just have a Savior who has these qualities. He IS these things!


He IS…

 …the image of the invisible God

What a magnificent way to begin a passage dedicated to establishing the identity of Jesus Christ! Paul states emphatically that Jesus is the image of the invisible God. But what does this mean? Israel knew they could not see God and live. This is the reason God allowed Moses to see His back (see Exodus 33:21-23). But Paul says that Jesus is the image of the unseen God…does this mean that Jesus isn’t God HImself?


The Greek word used here is the word eikon. According to the standard lexicon for New Testament Greek (known as BDAG to Greek students) this word means here in Colossians 1 “that which is the same form as something else; living image.” So the idea of Jesus being the eikon of God is saying He has the same form of God – He is the living image of God. In other words, He is God in the flesh. Essentially Paul is saying to the Colossians “If you have seen Jesus, you have seen God.” This is a weighty theological statement: Jesus Christ is none other than God in the flesh.


When we think of God, we must think of Jesus at the same time. Though they are different persons, they are the same God. Yes that can be confusing. It can give us a headache or two when trying to understand it. But we must not let difficulty in understanding change our view of truth. Since He is God, what does this mean? How does it affect my life? Your life?


This truth – that Jesus is God – should greatly affect us.


The first way this should affect us is in our reverential awe of Him.

So often we marginalize Him. So often we minimize who He is because our vision is set too low. Somehow HIs rank in the trinity affects our thoughts of His ability to answer us. This is so wrong! He IS God, and He IS able!


Another way this should affect us is in our thankfulness for the incarnation, life and death of Jesus.

Since He is God, God came to HIs creation, clothed Himself with flesh, voluntarily gave up the ability to independently exercise some of HIs divine attributes. So God put limits on Himself when He came in the flesh. Think about that for a moment. He did this out of love for us. And when we consider the final act of His love, we are just gonna be awestruck…or at east we should be.


He came to be the perfect and only acceptable sacrifice for sin.

Now this means that there is only one way for sin to be effectively and permanently dealt with. This sacrifice had to be perfect – it just HAD to be perfect. No bull, no goat, no dove would suffice. So God decided to sacrifice Himself for our sins. Yes, you read that right: because Jesus is God, God died for the ones He created. And He died not when those He created were lovely. No, He died for us while we were in the midst of being unholy, unrighteous, selfish and rebellious. Wow. I mean, WOW!


How do you view Christ?

Is He your buddy? Is He your friend? Your Savior? The answer should be “Yes” to those questions. But He is much, much more. Not only is Jesus my buddy – not only is Jesus my friend – not only is Jesus my Savior –  Jesus is God. May we never forget this simple little truth. May we never overlook this in the life He has called us to walk.


God loves me so much that He died for me. He limited Himself (for a time) for me. He loves me so much that He chooses to dwell inside me to guide me into truth and righteousness.

I must understand His deity if I am ever to appreciate HIs sacrifice. Before I can understand His teaching, I must first understand His nature.

When I recognize these truths, my life – and yours –  and outlook must change. When I  understand these truths, my life – and yours –  will forever be changed.


Take some time today to simply give thanks for the incomparable Jesus Christ.