Spectacular Sins came in the mail this week. On page 32, John Piper explains that Colossians 1:14-20 contains the most concentrated description of Christ’s glories.
Paul writes to the Church in Colossae, “14in whom [Jesus] we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. 15He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.”
In these few verses, Paul mentions 15 different truths about our Savior. 6 verses. 15 awe-inspiring truths.
In a matter of seconds, the Spirit clued me in to something about my heart that I had not realized — it had cooled. Meditating on Christ moved my heart in such a way that I knew it had not been stirred in quite a while.
I looked back through my journal and noted months had passed since I expressed in words my love to him. Too many of my entries focused on me, the kids, something I needed, something I wanted, my frustrations. My thoughts had not dwelt long on the scripture I had read that day or Jesus himself or the fact that he is my hope. Many dates are missing — a sure sign that I’ve neglected some important disciplines and sought refuge and satisfaction in my idols.
God’s Spirit reminded me of his gospel all over again. He said, “While we were sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). And, “He made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Cor. 5:21). And, “For by grace you have been saved through faith…it is the gift of God” (Eph. 2:8). And, “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” (Romans 8:15).
It all happened so quickly that the temptation is there to think what transpired doesn’t have to be a big deal. But later on in the day, I had time to pick up Piper’s book again and be reminded that the warmth for Christ in my heart is of paramount importance because it is not what it should be when I compare it to who He is.
He writes, “This [Colossians 1:14-20] is worth memorizing. If your heart ever wavers and grows cold, come here. Memorize this litany of glories, and ask God to give you affections that correspond to the measure of this greatness — infinite in beauty, immeasurable. If any person or any power or any wisdom or any love awakens any admiration or any amazement or any joy, let it be the greatest person and the greatest power and the greatest wisdom and the greatest love that exists — Jesus Christ” (emphasis mine).
This will be my prayer and meditation for this Lord’s Day.