Sermon Podcast on Colossians 2

Series: The Book of Colossians

January 19, 2020
Langdon Palmer

Have you ever met people who acted super spiritual ? They were so confident and lived so differently that it made you wonder about your own measly faith ? They subtlety sent the message that they were one of the “real Christians” as opposed to all the average Christians… like you. And yet something in your spirit told you there was something not quite right about them and their faith. Today Paul shows us three different ways that people drift from the freedom and the beauty of the gospel into the ditch of man-made religions that look Holy but are actually bondage. Join us as we meet Larry the lawmaker, Harry the Hippie, and Martha the minimalist. The easy part is seeing people you know who are just like them. The hard part is admitting which one is most likely to seduce you!

Episode Notes

With a small child you just tell them the rules – do this, don’t do that. Sometimes this is just what new Christians coming out of bad habits need to start doing too. But then as they grow they need to move beyond that to make their own decisions and discernment based on:

  • God’s Word;
  • the Holy Spirit speaking to your conscience;
  • the Wise Counsel of others.

High control parents and churches who don’t honor & support this personal decision-making freedom produce people who are either joylessly compliant or who rebel and walk away.

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

Three ways to corrupt or drift away from true Christianity are by focusing on something other than Jesus. They start with truth but then go too far in one direction. Which are you most like?

Larry the Lawmaker

(The Legalist) – Taking God’s Laws and adding your own rules to them

1.    Person struggles or gets in trouble with something  
2.    He makes rules to guard himself -guardrails
3.    Out of a desire to safeguard them, demands others adopt his rules
4.    He judges those who don’t obey his rules

Don’t turn your preferences into prejudices.

Harry the Hippie

(The Mystic) – Pursuing spiritual experiences and latest fads over Jesus

  1. Wants to get closer to God in intimate experience
  2. Doesn’t want to reduce the life of faith to only correct doctrines, all in your head
  3. Gets bored with, or feels limited by, the clear teaching of scripture
  4. Focuses on spiritual experiences in and of themselves rather than the triune God

We don’t follow after signs and wonders, signs and wonders follow Christ followers.

Martha the Minimalist

(The Ascetic) – Making discipline and suffering ends in themselves

  1. She has seen or done over-indulgence or selfish consumerism
  2. Realizes that we can learn much through discipline and suffering
  3. Concludes the body is dangerous and pleasure is evil,
    or that God only uses suffering to teach us
  4. Driven by guilt, you must atone for yourself by suffering and deprivation

Our goal is not to increase our suffering but to accept whatever suffering God has allowed for us. God is also the author of physical delight & good things. We focus on the giver not the gift.

Uniformity is the counterfeit of Unity

In Christianity there is no Jr. Varsity and Senior Varsity, just sinners saved by grace.

There are two was to do spirituality – either with me in the center with a focus on my rules, or my experiences or my suffering OR with Jesus at the center…

A number of illustrations and concepts used in this morning’s sermon were adopted from the work of Mark Driscoll.

Content Copyright Belongs to Langdon Palmer