In Him"I want you to know how much I have agonized for you and for the Church … and for many other friends who have never known me personally. My goal is that they will be encouraged and knit together by strong ties of love. I want them to have full confidence because they have complete understanding of God's secret plan, which is Christ Himself. In Him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." Colossians 2:1-3
"In Him lie hidden ALL the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." In Him, we live and move and have our being. It isn't enough to be called by His Name as Christian. It isn't enough to know the scriptures. The Pharisees were the ultimate religious leaders and had immense knowledge of the scriptures. But they didn't have a relationship with Jesus. They did not have the Spirit of God residing on the inside of them. The disciples were simple fishermen, uneducated and generally ignorant of scripture. Yet the most educated of the Israelites, the Sanhedrin, were perplexed by the disciple's wisdom and boldness. (Acts 4:13) "They (Sanhedrin) realized that they (disciples) had been with Jesus." Knowing the scriptures alone does not unearth the treasures of wisdom and knowledge that are found only in Him. (2 Corinthians 3:6) "The letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." The "letter" is the written scriptures. The scriptures are vital to guide us and direct us. They are God-breathed and when given by the Spirit they are words of life.
The Spirit that gives life is found in the presence of Jesus. When we truly give Him top priority, quieting the busy-ness of our lives, to inquire of Him, we receive everything we need to live and move and have. Without the Spirit, a ministry will only produce death. Without the Spirit of God in the preaching and teaching, people are barred from the heart of God rather than being drawn to Him. Separating people from God with legalism and doctrines, rather than by the Spirit that convicts, draws, teaches and heals.
Taking time to be with Jesus gives us free access to the mind of God. In this perilous world that we live in, we desperately need the mind of Christ. We need the sound mind that God has provided for us. This does not come automatically with title, position or time. This comes only from drinking at the fountain of life as we ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the Word of the Lord to us. As we read the scriptures, the Holy Spirit will lead and guide us into all truth. The treasures of wisdom and knowledge that are found in Him. These become words that change our world. Words to live by. Words to stand on. Possessing the mind of Christ is knowing what God is saying and doing right now. Only the Spirit of God can reveal this. It may be through scripture or in the still, small voice of the inward witness. And once we know what God is saying, we are immoveable – with impenetrable hardness – standing on the unshakable rock.
Being with Jesus transforms each person. Preaching the gospel without the presence of Jesus is no different than the gospel preached by the Pharisees of old. Just having a religious title of 'pastor, bishop, reverend', etc. does not make us any different than the Pharisees. The only way we can touch and change this world for God's kingdom, is found "in Him." When you become nothing and allow Him to use you, is when the wisdom and boldness to change peoples lives comes forth. We can read every Christian book on the market today. We can graduate from the highest ranked seminary in the world. We can build the biggest church and attract the largest crowds, but without HIM, our only gain will be what this world has to offer. (Matt 7:28-29) "And so it was, when Jesus had ended these sayings, that the people were astonished at His teaching, for He taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes."
Our labors for Him must not be in vain. We do not want to be among those that stand before God, accounting for His call upon our lives, only to hear "I never knew you." We must know Him. Not just by the biblical accounts but by the everyday experiences of life in Him. No matter what we accomplish, no matter how great our motives or zealous our works, if it is not done by His Spirit, saying what we hear Him say and doing what we see Him doing, then we have missed God entirely and all our work will burn as hay and stubble.
I have seen many sincere workers so caught up in performance, activities and pleasing man that they were not drawing anyone to God. Making disciples who never develop a close, personal relationship with Jesus is tragic. All the zeal – all the efforts – all the giving will only end in hells fire. Jesus the son of God came to earth to live as a man filled with the Spirit of God. He stripped Himself of all divine privileges. "Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner." (John 5:19) How did Jesus duplicate God on this earth? The same way that you and I can … by seeing the Father, spending time with Him, listening to Him, getting His mind on everything we need to know. And bringing His mind to the people we minister to. God's Spirit is not just an indwelling. God's Spirit is available to lead us and guide us into every bit of truth about every subject that we need wisdom and knowledge for.
We all face circumstances that are not specifically addressed in scripture. People who come to us for help are facing hard things where there are not clear directions in the scriptures. We cannot continue to give them religious dead answers. We must access the mind of Christ, to receive His Spirit, His anointing, to know exactly what to say and what to do. May our every word lead people to their heavenly Father.
The greatest honor you can give to God is to want to know Him more. The greatest gift you can give to your congregation is to dwell in His presence. Wisdom and knowledge will be the greatest treasures you can acquire. "In His presence is fullness of joy." His joy will be the strength you've been looking for. Acquiring His mind will be the answer you've been searching for.
May you take these words to heart and meditate on them, searching the scriptures to judge the truths herein, allowing the Holy Spirit to work truth in you, to the renewing of your mind. Find rest for your soul. Have a light and easy week as you accomplish great things for His Kingdom!