FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH
309 East North St. Sidney, Ohio 45365
Sunday School 9:15am
Sunday Worship Service 10:30am
Scripture: Colossians 1:21-23 September 19, 2021
Sermon: “The Simple Truth!” Pastor John Young
I think most of us are familiar with the KISS principle in public speaking. It means ‘keep it simple stupid.’ It’s a reminder that the best way to communicate with others is to make sure that your primary message is the primary message! Ha! The more complicated we make something; the more likely the main message will be blurred.
This principle must be applied to the message of Christianity too. Too often we confuse the message. We talk about styles of worship, we argue about music, we erect denominational walls, and we use gimmicks to fill our sanctuaries. All of these things tend to blur the message of the gospel.
In the passage of scripture under consideration today, Paul uses the KISS principle to remind us of the simple truth of the gospel. Only two points are made:
I. The Natural State of Humankind (before salvation).
A. Paul begins by reminding the Colossians of where they HAD been, before coming to Jesus!
1. He says, “You…were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works…”
a. Paul makes a similar statement to this in Ephesians 2:1-3 (turn there with me).
2. The Bible tells us first that we all are/were “alienated” from God.
a. Do you understand what horrible words these are?
b. We were created in the image of God.
c. We were made for fellowship with God!
d. Instead, we have become God’s enemies!
3. Secondly, the Bible further tells us that we were “enemies in [our] minds by wicked works…”
a. Notice we not only did wrong things, we desired and thought wrong things as well.
1) Listen to how Paul describes this same thing to the Roman Christians in Romans 1:21-23. Listen to what he said: “Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things.”
4) As Christians, we don’t like to admit we were like this, but in our natural state, we were just like this! Some of us may have been more bombastic in declaring it, but it was in all our hearts in our natural state.
4. And, the longer we remain in this ‘natural state; the worse things get!
a. Over a period of time, sin, rebellion and wickedness sere our conscience! We become numb to doing wrong things and thinking wrong thoughts.
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1) Take a quick scan of the evening propaganda (I mean ‘news’) (if you dare). Read the headlines of the bloggers. How else would you explain the senseless and horrific crimes that occur? How could a ‘medical’ person abort a baby? Worse yet, sell it’s ‘parts’ or harvest the skin cells to create makeup that renews your skin?
b. These things are all explained by a mind that has become confused and hardened to the things of God.
1) In this lost condition, humankind tries to sooth any latent pangs of conscience by:
a) Denial – “I didn’t do anything wrong.”
b) Diversion – “Everyone else is doing it!
c) Repression – “I just don’t want to talk about it!”
d) Rationalization – “They have so much, they’ll never miss it!”
e) Renaming – Instead of sin, we not call it “a complex, an addiction, a dependency, a mental disorder, a chemical imbalance, and obsession, a phobia, a disease, a quirk, an indiscretion, etc., etc.”
2) To sway their conscience, they simply compare themselves with others.
Illustration: A story is told of a man who used to stop by a clock shop every morning and stare at one particular clock in the window. One morning the owner of the store came out (sensing a chance for a sale) and remarked that he has seen the man stop there every day to look at that ‘beautiful’ clock. The stranger replied, “I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I stop here every day because my watch is not very accurate. Every morning I synchronize my watch with this clock. You see, I am the time keeper at the factory and I am the one charged to blow the whistle at 4 o’clock to denote quitting time.” The shopkeeper began laughing. He said, “I must admit that his clock is not very accurate either. Every day I set it by the 4 o’clock whistle at the factory!!!”
a) Obviously, if neither of these clocks is a dependable standard, the standard will become more and more corrupted!
b) And this is exactly what is happening in our world today. People are determining the ‘standard’ by the prevailing view of public opinion.
c) Absolute truth is vanishing!!! Our culture has created a god of their own liking and has turned their backs on the God of truth!!!
d) Paul asserts, in doing so, they (v-21) “were…alienated and enemies…” of God!
e) Instead of on the road to life; they are on the road to destruction!
f) Outside of Christ, everyone is in this ‘natural state.’
II. The Plan of Rescue!
A. After reminding the Colossians of their past, Paul now tells them about their current status as believers in vv. 21b-22 (review).
1. If you take these words a phrase at a time, it really is quite remarkable:
a. “Now hath he reconciled”—
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1) Two wonderful words – “were” and “now.” Hallelujah!!
2) Two more wonderful words – “alienated” and “reconciled.”
3) Two more wonderful words – “you” and “He.”
a) God took the initiative to reach out to us!!! We were without strength ourselves – Romans 5:8 – Amen! Now, notice how this ‘reconciling’ took place:
b. “In the body of his flesh through death”—
1) The Bible makes clear every lie propagated by the devil! The ONLY way a person can be reconciled with God is through “the body of HIS [Jesus’] flesh through death [crucifixion].”
2) As the song writer wrote, “All other ground is sinking sand!”
3) Nothing else can reconcile man to God!
c. “To present you holy”—
1) We often don’t understand the tremendous scope of our salvation.
2) The goal of redemption is not JUST to keep us out of hell; it’s to make us HOLY!
a) Try as you might, you cannot do this yourself! No matter how hard you try, the Bible says (Romans 3:23) you’ll, “come short!”
b) Only reconciliation can MAKE you holy!! God GIVES us JESUS’ holiness! And we become COMPLETE in Him!!!
d. “And unblameable”—
1) Nothing to be blamed for or about!! How does this happen? When God looks at us; He sees Jesus!
2) On the cross Jesus exchanged our sinfulness for His righteousness! Notice this in 2 Corinthians 5:21, “For he [God] hath made him[Jesus] to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God IN HIM.” When God looks at us; He sees Jesus’ righteousness!
e. And finally, “unreprovable in his sight”—
1) No more accusations! We’ve been declared innocent! All the charges of sin have been dropped! We are set free!!!
2) Corrie Ten Boom used to say, “Jesus takes our sin, past, present and future, dumps them in the ocean and puts up a sign that reads, “NO FISHING!”
Conclusion: The plan of rescue doesn’t involve humankind; it includes humankind! These are the simple truths of the gospel! The plan doesn’t take special consideration of those who are ‘not as bad as others,’ nor does it place the rescued in descending order of Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, etc. The simple truth is there are only two camps: ENEMIES of God and RECONCILED by God. KISS!