See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority (Col. 2: 8-10).

There is a vast chasm between what Paul called ‘the elemental spiritual forces of this world’ and the Lord Jesus Christ ‘in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge’ (Col. 2: 3). While this may sound grand and hifalutin, in actual fact it’s very simple.

Satan has filled the minds of people with lies about God so that they are afraid of Him, suspicious of Him or they just downright hate Him because they do not know who He is and what He is like and are enslaved to the philosophies and traditions of the demonic realm.

God sent Jesus into the world to be His representative and to show the world what He is like. He was born as a human baby, grew up as a human child in a human family and for three years He lived in a fishbowl for all the world to see what God thinks and how He behaves towards people. Jesus loved them, healed them, taught them, fed them, set them free from demonic oppression, and then died for them to forgive their sin and rose again to set them free from the fear of death. What more could He have done to show them what God thought and felt about them?

What are the elemental spiritual forces in the world? There are many and varied false ideas and teachings about God, the world, mankind, who we are and why we are here and where we are going but, in the end, they all come from one source, the god of this world, the devil. Why? Because he hates God, is opposed to Him and will do everything in his power to keep people from believing in Him.

Jesus, on the other hand, is the embodiment of truth because He is God in the flesh. Through Jesus, the Son, God the Father made it possible for us to see Him.

Philip said, ‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’ Jesus answered, ‘Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father?’ Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me?’ (John 14:8-10a).

Philosophies spawned by the demonic forces that influence the way people think and what they believe tend to drag people towards self-destruction, conflict and alienation from one another, and destruction and depletion of the resources which God placed in the world to sustain us. We make our own rules instead of following God’s ways, and the result is chaos and ruin. We only need to look at nature and society to see the result of our ‘wisdom’.

God’s wisdom is embodied in Jesus. Wherever He went, He left behind a trail of happy, healed and reconnected people. He brought joy to those who believed what He taught and followed His way. He claimed to be the embodiment of truth. When people are generous, loving and caring instead of selfish, greedy and heartless, they are at peace within themselves and at peace with one another. In other words, Jesus’s way works!

‘Wisdom and knowledge’ – what are these? Knowledge is knowing how a new gadget works and wisdom is putting it into practice. When we read the maker’s manual, we find out how the gadget works, and when we do what the manual tells us to do, the thing will work. It’s as simple as that! Jesus is God’s ‘manual’. Through His life here on earth as a human being, He showed us how God intended us to live to be safe, happy and free. Then He invited us: ‘Follow me.’

When Jesus spoke again to the people, He said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’ (John 8: 12).

The most amazing thing of all is that those who follow Jesus are ‘in Him’, and we have the potential to be everything that He was because He is ‘in us’. Everything that God the Father is, is in Him. Everything that He is, is in us. Paul urges us, then, to become who we are, sons and daughters of the living God!

Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.



Luella Campbell

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