Paul's immediate purpose in the Colossian epistle was to insist that Christ had created all those beings [supernatural spirits or angels] and that therefore he was superior to them. We today also need to inform people that Christ is the Creator of Heaven and Earth; but in addition, because of the naturalistic or humanistic secularism that dominates our culture, we must realize that they who are with us are more than they that be against us, for the encircling mountains are full of horses and chariots of fire. Would that God open our eyes to see through the twentieth-century smog of secularism.After naming these ranks of celestial spirits Paul adds, "The universe has been created by him and for him," that is, for his sake or for his purposes. Today even seemingly devout Christians entertain anthropocentric ideas. They think God made the world for them, rather than for himself. But Christianity is theocentric. They prefer to sing, "O how happy am I," instead of, "Glory to God in the highest." Even the words following this doxology are misunderstood: "on earth peace, good-will toward men," or worse, ". . . peace to men of good will." What the angel actually said, a little expanded, was, ". . . and on Earth peace with God among those men on whom God bestows his sovereign pleasure." Theocentric religion does not forbid us from speaking of our own condition. The Psalms are full of personal reflections: "I will lift up my eyes unto the hills . . ."; I "was glad when they said unto me . . ." But the phrases in Psalm 121 and 122 that follow these words show that their thought is centered on God. If we must emphasize one side over the other, let it be God's side.
Collect of the Day
O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Friday, July 12, 2013
"Today even seemingly devout Christians entertain anthropocentric ideas. They think God made the world for them, rather than for himself. But Christianity is theocentric." -- Gordon H. Clark
For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:16 NKJ)
The following quote is from Gordon H. Clark's commentary on the epistle to the Colossians:
-- Gordon H. Clark, Commentaries on Paul's Letters: Ephesians, Colossians, First and Second Thessalonians. The Works of Gordon Haddon Clark. Volume 12. (Unicoi: Trinity Foundation, 2005). Pp. 173-174.