Sermon #1048 Miscellaneous Sermons
Title: ALL FULLNESS IN CHRIST
Text: Colossians 1:19
Subject: The Infinite Fullness of Christ Our Mediator
Date: Sunday Morning – October 25, 1992
A long, long time ago there was a preacher of whom we know very little. Yet, we really know everything about him that we need to know about any preacher. We are told that he was “a faithful minister of Christ!” If God will give me the grace to be “a faithful minister of Christ,” it will be alright with me if you forget my name. I want nothing else in this world, but to be “a faithful minister of Christ.”
· This preacher’s name was Bro. Epaphras.
· He was pastor of the Church of God at Colosse.
· He was a prisoner at Rome at the same time Paul was, for preaching the gospel of Christ (Col. 1:7; 4:12; Phile. 23).
While Bro. Epaphras and the Apostle Paul were prisoners together at Rome, Epaphras told Paul all about his dear family at Colosse. Though he told Paul plainly of his fears for them and prayed earnestly for them, that they might “stand perfect and complete in all the will of God,” yet when Pastor Epaphras spoke of his brethren at Colosse, he did so in glowing terms of love. He talked about…
· How the Word of God came to them in power, bringing forth fruit unto God in their lives (v. 6).
· This faith in Christ (v. 4).
· Their love to all God’s saints (v. 4).
· Their blessed hope of eternal glory (v. 5).
· Their faithfullness to Christ (v. 6).
Paul was so overwhelmed by Epaphras’ report about the saints at Colosse that he fell in love with them, prayed for them, and wrote to them one of the most blessed, instructive letters in the New Testament. I want to call your attention to what I consider to be one of the most rapturous, glorious, awesome descriptions of our Lord Jesus Christ to be found in all the Bible – Colossians 1:9-19.
1. Look at Paul’s Prayer for God’s People (vv. 9-11).
Having heard so much about them from Epaphras, Paul said I constantly pray for you, and this is what I seek from the throne of grace on your behalf:
A. “That you might be filled with the knowledge of God’s will.”
· His Redemptive Purpose!
· The Holy Scriptures!
· His Will for You!
B. “That you might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing.”
Illustration: “Don’t forget who you are and whose you are!”
NOTICE: Seven Characteristics of the Life of Faith (vv. 10-13).
2. In verses 12-13, Paul breaks out into thanksgiving.
As he was writing to the Colossians about giving thanks, his heart welled up with deep gratitude to God and he began to give thanks to God…
· For Imputed Righteousness and Imparted Righteousness.
· For Sovereign, Saving Grace (v. 13). “The Son of His Love!”
· For Effectual, Blood Redemption – (v. 14).
3. Then Paul’s gratitude and thanksgiving turns into praise (vv. 15-18).
When he spoke about grace and redemption in Christ he could not resist the opportunity to extol and magnify his Savior.
a. He is the Image of the invisible God!
b. Christ is the Firstborn of every Creature!
· That does not mean that he is the first creature!
· It means that he is “The beginning of the creation of God.” (Rev. 3:14).
c. Christ is the Creator of All Things, the Beginning of All Things, and the Ruler of all things (v. 16).
d. Christ is eternal! (v. 17). And He is God!
He is before all things; and by him all things consist.
e. He is the Head of the Church, his Body (v. 18).
f. He is the Beginning of the Resurrection, “The Firstborn from the dead!” (v. 18).
In essence, Paul is telling us that God almighty has put all things into the hands of his Son, as our Mediator, “that in all things he might have the preeminence!” (v. 18).
Now the reason for all of this is stated in verse 19 – “For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell!” I want us to camp right here for just a little while and try to adore and worship our Savior.
In this text of Scripture Paul teaches us that it is the purpose and pleasure of God the Father that all the fulness of grace and glory dwell in the Lord Jesus Christ – Whatever we get from God we receive of his fullness (John 1:14-16).
1. What is the “All Fulness?”
2. Where is “All Fulness” to be Found?
3. Why is “All Fulness” in Christ?
4. When is “All Fulness” to be Found in Christ?
5. What is the Result of “All Fulness” being in Christ?
I. What is this “All Fulness”?
Paul wants us to understand that there is in the Lord Jesus Christ a superlative, infinite, immeasurable wealth of fullness! He is an artesian well of fulness. Everything is in him!
a. Here is a Word of Comfort and Cheer to Bankrupt Sinners.
By nature we are all emptiness and vanity; but, blessed be God, he has provided all fulness for us in Christ. “I know that in me, that is, in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing!”
1. In us there is an utter lack of merit before God.
2. There is in us a total absence of power to gain merit before God.
3. There is even a complete absence of will to obey God, even if we had the power!
4. But in Christ there is “all fullness!”
a. Are you Dead? Christ is Life!
b. Are you Sin? Christ is Righteousness!
c. Are you Naked? Christ is Clothing!
d. Are you Hungry? Christ is Bread!
e. Are you Thirsty? Christ is Water!
f. Are you Guilty? Christ is Pardon!
g. Are you Blind? Christ is Light!
h. Are you Prisoner? Christ is Liberty!
i. Are you Debtor? Christ is Ransom!
j. Are you Helpless? Christ is Strength!
k. Are you Condemned? Christ is Deliverance!
l. Are you Emptiness? Christ is Fulness!
There is joyful good news to every last soul, conscious of his sad estate and humbled before God. In Christ is “all fullness!” Let me ring that bell again.
B. Christ is not the shadow of fulness, or the foretaste of fulness. Jesus Christ is, in reality, The Very Substance of All Fulness.
Let me show you what I mean by that. The Old Testament types are instructive, but not saving. The ordinances and ceremonies of the law pointed to One who could take away sin, but they could never do so. Those sacrifices were beautiful, costly and impressive; but they could never satisfy the justice of God, silence a guilty conscience, or put away one sin – Christ is the Fulness of All Those Old Testament types and pictures – (Heb. 10:1-10).
Not all the blood of beasts on Jewish altars slain could give the guilty conscience peace, or wash away the stain; But Christ, the heavenly Lamb, takes all our sin away, A Sacrifice of nobler name and richer blood than they!
NOTE: If rituals, ceremonies and sacrifices which God himself ordained could never put away one sin, certainly more of your puny works can do so!
“The law was given by Moses; but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” (John 1:16). “And of his fullness have we received, and grace for grace.” (John 1:16).
Jesus Christ is our Sacrifice, our Altar, our Priest, our Tabernacle, our Mercy-Seat, our all in all! In this matter of salvation Christ is “All Fullness”! He left nothing for us to do, neither for us to contribute, nothing for us to complete. There are no deficiencies for us to make up. In him, by him and for him “It is finished!” “For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell!” “In him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him” (Col. 2:9-10).
C. Certainly, Paul means for us to understand that there is in The Lord Jesus Christ All The Fulness of The Triune Godhead – (Col. 2:9-10).
Jesus Christ the Man is the Eternal God! By nature, if I can use such language, he possesses all the attributes of divinity. He is eternal, omniscient, and omnipresent. He is the great and glorious God! He is the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the Ending, the First and the Last. He is “God manifest in the flesh.” “God over all, and blessed forever!” His name is “The Mighty God!” But more – All the Fulness of the Infinite, Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, resides in the body of that Man who died at Calvary and now sits in glory!
· Jesus Christ is God!
· He is all of God we Know!
· He is all there is of God!
NOTE: We are Trinitarians (I John 5:7). But I am here to tell you that the Triune God resides in and is known only in Christ – He is the Word of God!
Still, I have not yet reached the fullness of Paul’s meaning, when he says, “It pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell!”
D. Paul’s primary point of aderation is this – All Fulness Is In Christ as the Mediator, Substitute, and Represnetative of His People.
As the result of our Lord’s mediatorial work of righteousness and redemption all fullness dwells in him. By virtue of his obedience and sacrifice as our Mediator, Christ has earned merit and power before God. He is the mighty Reservoir and Despensary of Divine grace – (Ps. 68:18-20; John 17:1-5). All power and grace is in his hand and at his disposal. “He shutteth and no man openeth; he openeth and no man shutteth!”
1. All fulness toward God dwells in Christ.
That is to say, all that God requires of man Jesus Christ is, perfectly (I Cor. 1:30-31).
· Perfect Obedience to God’s Will!
· Perfect Fulfilment of God’s Law!
· Perfect Satisfaction to God’s Justice.
2. All fullness dwells in Christ toward man.
I say to saints and sinners alike – Everything you need, everything your soul requires is in Christ, the all-sufficient Savior! With confidence, I sing to him –
“Thou, O Christ art all I want.
More than all in The I find!”
What do you want? What do you need? “All fullness” is in Christ!”
What tongue can express this infinite bounty? “All fulness is in Christ! And this Christ is ours! “The Lord is the portion of your inheritance and of your cup!” Try to get hold of this – If you are in Christ, all fulness is yours! Infinitely yours! Eternally yours! (I Cor. 3:21-23). What can we lack?
II. Where is “All Fulness” to be Found?
“It pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell!”
These words are very exclusive. “All fulness” is in Christ alone!
· There is no fulness in any man!
· There is no fulness in any church!
· There is no fulness in any religious ritual, ceremony, or ordinance.
“All fulness” dwells only in Christ! Let us therefore extol, praise, and honor the Christ of God! “All fullness” is in him!
· All fulness of Mercy and Power!
· All fulness of Redemption and Righteousness!
· All fulness of Love and Grace!
“All fulness” is in Christ. Infinite, incomprehensible, divine, saving fullness is in Immanuel!
God has placed all fulness in his Son. Where else could it be placed? All fulness is in Christ radically. It cannot be had anywhere else. It is not in his doctrine. It is not in his offices. It is not in his Word. It is not even in his work. It is in him, personally. It is the Person of Christ that gives weight, merit, and efficacy to his Word, his offices, and his work. It would obtain “all fulness”, you must get Christ. Christ alone is…
· Great Enough to Contain All Fulness!
· Immutable Enough to Retain All Fulness!
· Suitable Enough to Distribute All Fulness that we May Obtain It!
“It pleased the Father!” That is answer enough. But there is more.
A. “All Fulness” is In Christ because The Father Loves the Son (John 3:35).
1. It is most wise, because He is God.
2. It is most just, because He earned it.
3. It is most gracious, because He is one of us – A Man In Glory.
B. It pleased the Father that “All fulness” dwell in Christ For the Security of His People.
All the blessings of the covenant are secure to God’s elect because all fulness is in Christ.
· Not Adam!
· Not Moses!
· Not Us!
C. It pleased the Father that all fulness dwell in Christ Because God is Determined that His son Have All Preeminence and Praise (Col. 1:18; Phil. 2:8-11).
It is in him at all times, past, present, and future. “For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell!”
A. “All Fulness” Has Always Been In Christ.
There never was a time when God looked anywhere else for the satisfaction of his justice on the blessedness of his people – (Rev. 13:8; Eph. 1:3).
1. All fulness was in him in Eternity.
2. All fulness was in him when Adam Fell.
3. All fulness was in him when He Ascended back into Glory.
4. All fulness is in Him Now!
B. Jesus Christ is An Inexhaustible Barrel and an Inexhaustible Cruise from which We May Draw All The Needs of Our Souls, Forever! (Heb. 4:16).
1. His fulness is perpetual!
2. His fulness is accessible!
3. His fulness is free!
C. “All Fulness” shall Dwell in Christ Forever!
If it is the glory of Christ now for all fullness to dwell in him, it will be his glory to be all fulness forever. Jesus Christ himself is all the fulness of heaven. All the blessings and blessedness of that fair land flow from him perpetually.
V. What is the Result of “All Fulness” being in Christ?
A. He has made peace through the blood of his cross.
B. He will, one day, reconcile all things to God.
C. He has reconciled us to God.
D. He will present us faultless before the presence of his glory “All Fulness” is ours forever “if” we continue in the faith and are never moved away from the hope of the gospel!
“We pray you now in Christ’s stead…” II cor. 5:20-21 I have peace!