Knowing our King | Colossians 2:1-2 | Comfortable
1 For I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh; 2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
We have been looking at the making of a minister over the past few verses and now we get a glimpse into the heart of one of God’s greatest ministers to every live.
Notice his “great conflict,” Paul uses strong words here to describe the feelings he is having for the churches in Phrygia[Colossae, and Laodicea] and for as many, as have never seen his face[this includes me and you]. He calls it a great conflict. He longs to see these people, but more than seeing these people he longs to see them prosper. Taking no thought for the great conflict he was in himself, being in Roman custody and under twenty-four-hour guard, in a home he was not allowed to leave. The only thing he has to say about his only personal conflict is summed up in three words in the last verse of this letter, “Remember my bonds.” The heart that has been made into a minister is more concerned with the well-being of others than of his own.
The conflict that Paul is facing can only frustrate the flesh and hurt the body but the trouble that Colossae is facing is of the sort that leads men astray and when it has its end takes men away from Christ and into hell, so when we see things from that perspective, truly their danger was greater than what Paul was facing. This shows us that the heart of the minister has his eyes on spiritual matters more than physical ones. This is even true of the prayers Paul prayed for these people and in all his epistles. He always prays for spiritual prosperity and not physical. He prays for things like peace, love, joy, knowledge of his will, wisdom, and the like. Even in our above verses notice what he desires for these people, that their “hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God..” The heart of a minister longs for the spiritual well-being of the people God has called him to.
Verse one shows us his great conflict and verses two and three show us that his great conflict is for their great comfort, “Their hearts might be comforted.” That is what he desires for them and even us. He isn’t speaking of worldly comfort, or else he would have prayed for their homes and finances and worldly things. He is concerned for their spiritual comfort, which is what is under attack when false doctrines are being taught, as they were in the Colossae church. It is important to note that false doctrines can not damn the saved, but they can damn the lost. Those who are born again can entertain false doctrines, but they will lose their comfort, their love, and many of the fruits we are to bear to God that make our life in this world comfortable and happy. He is having this great conflict for them because in this region there is a false teaching creeping into the churches and it is going to rob the saved of their comfort in the Lord and rob the lost of the gospel message that is the power of God unto salvation. So he goes on to show us some things that will guarantee our comfort as Christians.
“Being knit together in love,” the word knit means to be bound together. What a wonderful picture of a body of believers, when you knit or sew a cloth into a quilt it is no longer singular but every piece of cloth, with its different patterns and colors, is knit together and filled with the same filling becomes one unified piece of material and is one of the most comfortable things I have in my home. The Church is like this, all different persons, different personalities, different colors, and different backgrounds, but we were knit together with our local assembly of believers, and all filled with the Holy Ghost are part of the same body here on earth and part of a greater body in all the world and heaven. How comfortable it is to have friends of the same mind and in the same accord, how comfortable when you can come and be fed with the sheep on a weekly basis and worship the Lord. If you are not part of a local assembly and you are a Christian you will not be comfortable, God would have us be knit together in Love and the local assembly is where this takes place here on earth.
Comfort is also a fruit of “The full Assurance of understanding” he even calls this one “the riches of the full assurance of understanding,” and rich is its possessor! In this world, riches afford one certain comforts that are not available to the poor. So is the case in the Christian life, if you would be rich in assurance your comfort would be greater than those who lack it. Strive for these riches! Assurance stems from understanding, I believe that is why he calls it “full assurance of understanding.” If you lack assurance of your riches in Christ, then you lack an understanding of where they come from and how they are bestowed. Read Ephesians and he will help you understand that your assurance isn’t dependent upon your feelings but upon the work of Christ and the promise of God, we are simply recipients of this great transaction. He wrote a contract with Him as the author and fulfiller of the stipulations and us as the beneficiaries. I am sure of my salvation today because God has promised it and I have for a “strong consolation” his word and his oath”[Hebrews 6:18].
Lastly, comfort comes from “the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ; 3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” If you would be comfortable, you must understand the “Mysteries” for yourself. Paul refers to mysteries not because they are hidden from us but because they were truths hidden in the past and under the old covenant [Eph 3:3-5]. The word acknowledge means recognition of. If you would be comfortable in your soul you need to recognize the teachings of the scripture and rightly divide them for yourself. It is one thing to receive a message once or twice a week and to be a student of another man’s labors and something altogether different to dig out these truths for yourself and labor to your own satisfaction. Studies have been done that prove that you only retain about 5% percent of what you receive in a lecture, but the teacher who had to study to teach that same lesson retains about 90% of the material gathered and structured and assimilated. Every Christians’ level of comfort is directly affected by their knowledge of the truth, not their pastor’s knowledge or their father’s or mother’s knowledge but their own. Know what you believe and why you believe for your own self and you will be comfortable.
Are you comfortable? You may be sitting in a nice house, driving a nice vehicle with a comfortable amount of savings in the bank, but are you comfortable in your soul? Is it your forsaking of the gathering together with God’s people that has you uncomfortable? Is it your lack of understanding that has made you poor in assurance? Do you know what the scriptures say? How comfortable you could be if you would only put to use these means God has provided for you and “The Comforter” can be your guide into all truth. This is the conflict ministers have, that their people would be “Comfortable.”