Introduction and Review:
Last time we considered further thoughts on the glory of the fullness of the King of Kings, Jesus Christ in Colossians 1:13-20. If we were to summarize the entire message of Colossians in one succinct sentence, it would be this: “Jesus is enough.” To demonstrate the reality of this statement, Paul pauses in the flow of his writing to behold and marvel at the full glory of King Jesus. Today’s post will aim to continue unpacking this wonderful text of Colossians 1:13-20 in the hope that we can behold the full glory of King Jesus. To achieve this purpose we will make mention of the underlying Greek text and provide ample translation of pertinent details so as to enjoy the depths and heights of this text. We have thus far seen the glorious King Jesus portrayed in Colossians 1:13-18 with regard to His work, Deity, as Heir of all things, The Agent of creation, the reason for creation, The Creator, the one who holds all things together, the one who rules all things and the Risen Lord. Today we want to consider even further truths about this fully Glorious King in Colossians 1:19-20.
1. The Pre-eminent King. Colossians 1:18 …..”so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.“
The word translated “first place” could just as easily be translated “pre-eminence”. Jesus Christ is not just number one on a list, He is Supreme over all things. The word is from whence we get our English word “proton”. God the Father so ordained all of creation to be made in order that His Son could be regarded as Pre-eminent. Jesus Christ could not be just a mere creature, otherwise He would not receive such acclamation from the Father.
2. The fullness of the King’s glory. Colossians 1:19 “For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him.”
The word translated “fullness” is the Greek term τὸ πλήρωμα (ple-roma). Again Paul is combatting the heretics who were attempting to sway the Colossians. In their brand of heresy, the “ple-roma” referred to that impersonal force that was responsibile for bringing into being the lesser and descending orders or “emanations” that finally ended at the lowest end, producing the physical, visible realm. To these heretics, the material realm was evil, and the spiritual was good, thus leading many scholars to believe that an early form of gnostic thought may had been operating at Colossae. At anyrate, it would had boggled these heretic’s minds to imagine the “pleroma” as being both a Personal being and indwelling in a human nature. Paul once again turns the heresy on its head and tells the Colossians the truth – that Jesus is the Fullness of Deity in an incarnated fully human nature. The Father was pleased for this arrangement to take place and along with Son, ordained it to be such.
3. The King as the Reconciler. Colossians 1:20 “and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.”
Amazingly Paul closes out this incredible doxology or section of exalted praise by arriving at the same point he began – at the cross. The King of glory is seen as the Reconciler. In scripture the doctrine of reconciliation is to be conceived along two lines. Redemptive reconciliation and objective reconciliation. In passages such as 2 Corinthians 5:15-20, we see the heart of reconciliation being communicated – namely redemptive reconciliation.
In the proper sense, the only way human beings can be formally and relationally reconcled to God is through faith in Jesus Christ. Here in Colossians 1:20 we see an objective reconciliation, meaning that all things will come to recognize Jesus as King, even if that means they are not all reconciled in the redemptive sense. Thus, Satan, the demons and unbelievers will bow the knee to King Jesus (see Philippians 2:5-11), but not out of desire but obligation. The Son will be recognized by all, however, and sadly, He will not be loved by all. The Justice of Christ and the Grace of Christ will be forever displayed in their appropriate settings – grace forever shown to the redeemed in the New Heavens and New Earth and justice forever shown in the Lake of fire to Satan and all who rejected the Son. (Revelation 21:8 and Revelation 22)
How fully glorious King Jesus is in Colossians 1:13-20
We have thus far seen the glorious King Jesus portrayed in Colossians 1:13-18 with regard to His work, Deity, as Heir of all things, The Agent of creation, the reason for creation, The Creator, the one who holds all things together, the one who rules all things and the Risen Lord, the pre-eminent One, the fully glorious King and the Reconciler of all things. In our next post we will attempt to pull together everything we have looked at in these past few blogs to provide a coherent picture of the full glory of King Jesus in Colossians 1:13-20.