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The Mystery of God

On June 25, 1967, the European Broadcasting Union produced the first television program to be broadcast globally live via satellite. Some 400–700 million people viewed the historic program titled Our World, with the Beatles performing their song “All You Need is Love.” The title of the song repeated in the chorus,

“All you need is love
All you need is love
All you need is love
Love is all you need.”

While the apostle Paul certainly had a high regard for love, he would have changed the words of that lyric to something like, “All you need is Christ.” In today’s reading, Paul reminds his readers that he has “contended” and labored for the church (v. 1). The goal of his labor was that they “may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ” (v. 2).

Indeed, Jesus was a mystery to those in the Roman world. That God would most fully reveal Himself as a crucified criminal must have sounded like nonsense to many of them. Yet, Paul is clear that it is in Jesus that “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” are hidden (v. 2). Jesus is the key to knowing and having a relationship with God and having unity in the church (v. 2).

Then, as today, many people were preaching a different message. Paul warns the Colossian church to be careful that “no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments” (v. 4). There are many arguments that may sound more impressive, or more logical, than the message of a crucified and risen Savior, but Paul reminds us that these impressive arguments are deceptive. It is only in Christ that true wisdom and true knowledge are found.

Apply the Word

We may struggle with sharing the gospel because our culture makes the message seem implausible. You are not alone! The world has always rejected Christ and the message of the gospel. Paul faced insults and unbelief everywhere he went. Yet, he persevered. Thank the Lord that the incredible message of a crucified Savior is true.

BY Ryan Cook

Dr. Ryan Cook has taught at Moody Bible Institute since 2012. He earned his bachelor of arts in Bible and Theology from Moody and his master of arts in Old Testament from Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. He has worked in Christian education and served as a pastor in Michigan for seven years. During his time as a professor at Moody, he earned his doctorate from Asbury Theological Seminary. He now lives with his wife, Ashley, and their three children in the Chicagoland area.

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