See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. Colossians 2:8
Are you captivated by Christ or by the world? That is the context for Paul’s admonition to the Colossian believers. Our focus verse sums up the point Paul made earlier in this passage by telling his readers that his great desire was for them to attain “all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument.”
So, if our spiritual wealth comes from a full assurance of understanding that true knowledge is found in an ever-growing relationship with Jesus Christ, why do we still give so much time, attention, and value to the things of this world?
Some may think that they are not captive to the world and are captive to Christ. There is any easy test to prove whether or not this is true. Ask yourself a few probing questions such as:
- Do you see your church as a place to come and receive or to come and contribute? Are you involved in ministry at your church? Do you volunteer for ministries where there are known needs? Or do you use the excuse that you are too busy?
- Do you make up your own morality? Do you decide for yourself what is true, what is right, what is good? Or do you look to God’s Word for understanding what is true, right, and good?
- Do you believe that God’s primary concern for you is that you are happy? Or do you understand that God’s primary concern is that you are holy and recognize this process may require sacrifice and difficulty?
Friends, we were once all captive to the domain of darkness but God in His mercy caused us to be born again into a living hope. God desires to transform us into the likeness of His Son Jesus Christ. It is His desire that we be renewed day by day in our thinking so that we will understand the riches of His mercy and grace. Don’t trade this magnificent inheritance for the things the world has to offer.
That is a transforming truth.