It has been said that the book of Ephesians focuses on the church of Christ, while the book of Colossians focuses on the Christ of the church. So many great truths about the Lord are found and expressions that help us to understand and see the blessings that are found in Him. In Colossians 2:6, Paul writes, “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him. As these to whom Paul was writing had obeyed the Lord’s will in becoming Christians, the following four participles in Colossians 3:7 remind us of our need for the Lord and how to live properly before Him. The verse reads, “rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.”
Rooted In Him – In these West Texas winds, it is important for trees to have a good root system. Without a solid base, a tree will easily topple over. Roots also provide the way for nutrients and water to allow the tree to grow and produce. Paul says that these Christians have been rooted in Christ. As branches that abide in the Vine, Jesus said that no life is possible without abiding in Him (John 15:1-8). In times of uncertainty like these, we as Christians must be firmly rooted in Christ, He alone provides us the stability we need no matter what is happening in the world around us.
Built Up In Him – This is like the figure of the roots just looked at, but it carries it another step. While it is true that our roots must be extended and strengthened underground, we are to continue to build and to finish the structure from the foundation that has already been laid. In 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, there is no other foundation than Jesus and our lives are to be rooted in Him and then built on Him. As Christians, we must be growing in grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18). We must desire the pure milk of the word that we may grow thereby (1 Peter 2:2).
Established In The Faith – To be established is to make firm or confirm. Get the picture that inspiration is drawing. In Christ, we have good roots of support and nourishment allowing growth. In Christ, we are building our lives upon Him as the foundation. We are continuing to grow in Him through study and always confirming what we know to be truth. To be established in Christ means that we are confirming what we already know and are doing, as well as that which is lacking. This is certainly not a time in our lives to be doing less with God’s word, but spending more time to sure up our roots and fill in any cracks or areas of weakness in our lives!
Abounding With Thanksgiving – Abounding carries with it the idea of overflowing. Christians who are rooted in Christ, built up in Christ, and established in the faith should be literally overflowing with gratitude! This is the logical conclusion to the first three participles of this verse. Who would not be excited and thankful in regard to what has happened to us in Jesus? Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I say, rejoice! (Philippians 4:4)
Friends, we are going through some difficult times to be sure. However, let us be reminded that as Christians rooted, built up, and established in the faith – we have every reason imaginable to abound with thanksgiving. Continue to walk in Christ and keep smiling!
– Adam Orr