Sermon #1449[1][1]


     Title:       Christ Pre-eminent in the Trinity (2)

     Text:       Colossians 1:18

     Reading: Colossians 1:1-29

     Subject:  Christ’s Pre-eminence in the Trinity

     Date:       Sunday Morning -- January 14, 2001

     Tape #       W-21a



     I want to pick up this morning right where I left off last Sunday morning. Our subject is Christ Pre-eminent in the Trinity.


     Our text is in Colossians 1:18 -- "And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.


     The Holy Spirit here tells us that it is the will, the pleasure, the determination, and the delight of the Father’s heart, and of triune God, “that in all things he (the Lord Jesus Christ, as the God-man, our Mediator) might have the preeminence." I am endeavoring to show you from the Scriptures that...


Proposition:   God has so highly exalted, honored, and magnified his Son that the only way any creature can exalt, honor, and magnify the triune God is by exalting, honoring, and magnifying the Lord Jesus Christ.


     So determined is the eternal, triune God to make Christ pre-eminent in all things that God cannot be revealed to or known by men except as he is revealed and known in Christ. The only way God makes himself known is through his Son. And the only way God deals with men is through his Son.


John 3:35  "The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand."


     Last week, we saw from the Scriptures, that the Triune God has given pre-eminence to the Lord Jesus Christ in revelation and operation. I showed you; and I hope you see and rejoice to know that… (1) the triune God reveals himself to sinners only in Christ, and (2) as God is revealed only in Christ, so too, the only way God works is through his Son, our Mediator, the Lord Jesus Christ.


     Today, I want to show you that the Lord Jesus Christ, our Savior, our God-man Mediator, is pre-eminent in the Holy Trinity, by showing you that the Lord God has given him pre-eminence restitution and in exaltation. Then I will give a word or two of application, by which I hope Holy Spirit will graciously seal to our hearts the fact of Christ’s pre-eminence in the Holy Trinity. So, if you are taking notes, the points of the message today will be…

·        Restitution

·        Exaltation

·        Application


I.            Restitution -- God deals with men only in and through the Lord Jesus Christ, his dear Son. -- That in all things he might have the preeminence."


     There is an hour appointed when the Lord God is going to make a restitution of all things. That is to say, he is going to bring all things to their appointed end, put all things under the feet of his Son, and make all things to show forth his everlasting praise, honor and glory. Everything that is, has been, or shall hereafter be shall honor our God, and everyone is going to see it. All things in heaven, earth, and hell will praise him. And everyone in heaven, earth, and hell will know that he is praised in all things.


     Either in grace or in judgment, everyone will bow to the feet of the God-man, the Lord Jesus Christ. Either in the everlasting praise of his grace, or in the everlasting honor of his justice, you and I will honor God. “All that are incensed against him shall be ashamed.” And “In the Lord shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.” One way or another, you and I will honor God.


[Isaiah 45:20-25]  "Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save. [21] Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. [22] Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. [23] I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. [24] Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. [25] In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory."


[Philippians 2:9-11]  "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: [10] That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; [11] And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."


     In the light of this fact, I urge you, I plead with you, for Christ’s sake, for your immortal soul’s sake, to be reconciled to God. Bow to Christ now.


[Acts 3:19-21]  "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; [20] And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: [21] Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began."


No mortal shall endure

The terrors of that day,

When heaven and earth, before God’s throne,

In horror melt away!


Before the last trump sounds,

And Christ in judgment comes,

Oh, hear the gospel’s gracious tones,

And to the Savior come!


O sinner, seek His grace!

His wrath you cannot bear!

Bow now before the Throne of Grace,

And find salvation there!


By faith behold the curse

Removed by Jesus’ blood;

And you’ll rejoice when Jesus comes

To take you home to God!


     But the only way you will ever approach God and find acceptance with him is by faith in Christ. You cannot come to God, but by him. And God will not come to you, neither in grace nor in judgment, but by Christ.


John 10:9  "I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture."


John 14:6  "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."


Ephesians 2:18  "For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father."


Hebrews 7:25  "Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them."


Hebrews 10:19  "Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,"


Our Savior says, “No man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” The fact is, God will not speak to nor will he be spoken to by any man apart from the Lord Jesus Christ.


A.            The whole of our salvation is in Christ.


1 Corinthians 1:30-31  "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: (31) That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord."


B.            God will not receive any worship, prayer, praise, sacrifice, or service offered to him by men except through the merits and mediation of the Lord Jesus Christ.


1 Peter 2:5  "Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ."


Everything done for God and offered to God must be done and offered in the name of Christ, with the conscious realization that we have no access to or acceptance with the eternal God but by Christ.


1.     We believe in his name.

2.     We worship in his name.

3.     We pray in his name.

4.     We gather in his name.

5.     We serve in his name.


C.            All the blessings of grace and glory are freely bestowed upon sinners by God for Christ’s sake alone.


Ephesians 1:3-14  "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: (4) According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: (5) Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, (6) To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. (7) In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; (8) Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; (9) Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: (10) That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: (11) In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: (12) That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. (13) In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, (14) Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory."


Ephesians 4:32  "And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you."


D.            All the comfort, instruction, and direction of God the Holy Spirit comes to sinners through the Lord Jesus Christ.


John 16:13-14  "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. (14) He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you."


In accordance with the disposition of the covenant of grace the Holy Spirit is Christ’s agent in this world, just as he was the Father’s agent in this world. He does nothing of himself, speaks nothing of himself, and receives nothing to himself. It is the Spirit’s delight to do Christ’s bidding in this world, even as it has been the Son’s delight to do his Father’s bidding. Christ is the Fountain of grace. The Holy Spirit is the channel through whom all the waters of grace flow to us from the Fountain.


Note: The gifts of the Spirit are actually the gifts of Christ bestowed upon his church by the Spirit for the glory of Christ, for the furtherance of the gospel of Christ, and for the increase and spiritual welfare of the body of Christ. A comparison of Scripture with Scripture will show this plainly.


1 Corinthians 12:11  "But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will."


Ephesians 4:7-12  "But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. (8) Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (9) (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? (10) He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) (11) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:"


The Holy Spirit is not in competition with Christ. He has come to glorify Christ. Everywhere today we hear men saying, “This is the age of the Holy Spirit.” They talk about the anointing of the Spirit, the baptism of the Spirit, being slain in the Spirit, the gifts of the Spirit, the filling of the Spirit, the presence of the Spirit, and the works of the Spirit, and say very little about the Person, work, and glory of Christ.


Hear me well. Those who preach the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit, those who tell you to seek the Spirit, those who focus your attention on the Holy Spirit do not have the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit speaks only of Christ. And those who have the Spirit of Christ speak of Christ. That man who preaches by the Spirit of God preaches Christ only, Christ alone, and Christ always.


Let no one misunderstand me. Let us reverence the Holy Spirit, worship the Spirit, and honor the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God. But the only way to reverence the Spirit is to reverence Christ. The only way to worship the Spirit is to worship Christ. The only way to honor the Spirit is to honor Christ.


·        To have the anointing of the Spirit is to have Christ.

·        To be baptized in the Spirit is to be baptized into Christ.

·        To have the gifts of the Spirit is to have the covenant blessings of God’s grace in Christ.

·        To have the filling of the Spirit is to have Christ in you.

·        To have the power of the Spirit is to have the power of Christ.

·        To have the presence of the Spirit is to have the presence of Christ.

·        To have the work of the Spirit is to have Christ formed in you.

·        To walk in the Spirit is to walk in Christ, with Christ, toward Christ, and for Christ by faith in Christ.


This is not the age of the Spirit. This is the age of the Son. This is the age of Christ! This is the day of grace, the gospel day, the day of Christ. It began when the Sun of Righteousness arose from the grave with healing under his wings!


E.            When this world has been folded up like a vesture, when time shall be no more and all men shall stand before God at the bar of judgment, even then God will still deal with men only by his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.


The Judge who will sit upon the great white throne in that great day will be the God-man, our Mediator, the Lord Jesus Christ.


John 5:21-22  "For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will. (22) For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son."


Acts 17:31  "Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead."


Romans 14:10-12  "But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. (11) For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. (12) So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God."


2 Corinthians 5:10-11  "For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (11) Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences."


Let men mock as they will. Try to put it out of your mind if you dare. But I am here to assure you that one day soon you must meet Jesus Christ your God face to face in judgment.


Hebrews 9:27  "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment."


Revelation 20:11-12  "And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. (12) And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works."


·        There is a resurrection day coming.

·        There is a reckoning day coming.

·        There is a retribution day coming. In that day every man shall receive exactly his due reward. Every one of us will get exactly what is coming to us according to the record books of divine justice.


Revelation 21:27  "And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life."


Revelation 22:10-12  "And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand. (11) He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. (12) And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be."


II.            Exaltation -- Throughout the endless ages of eternity, according to the wise and holy decree of the triune God, the Lord Jesus Christ will have the pre-eminence in all things.


This is God’s purpose. And it shall be done. That in all things he might have the preeminence."


A.            When all creation is at last made his footstool, when all creatures at last bow to Jesus Christ, as they shall, God will be glorified in the pre-eminence of his dear Son.


Ephesians 1:10  "That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him."


Philippians 2:9-11  "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: (10) That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; (11) And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."


Colossians 1:20  "And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven."


1 Corinthians 15:25-28  "For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. (26) The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. (27) For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. (28) And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all."


When the God-man has at last fulfilled his last engagement as the Surety of the covenant, he will present the entire universe to his Father, and in all things, in all the universe God will be glorified. God will be all in all as the enthroned Christ reigns forever and ever in the splendor of his righteousness and glory with all his elect glorified with him as the reward of his labor!


What the sun is to our solar system, Christ, the Sun of Righteousness, is to heaven and eternity. He is the Center of heaven, the Light of heaven, the life of heaven, the Strength of heaven, and the Joy of heaven. Withdraw the sun from our solar system and everything would be darkness, destruction, and death. And if you could withdraw Christ from heaven, heaven itself would be hell; for it would be darkness, destruction, and death forever without God!


B.             In heaven’s glory Christ is and ever shall be pre-eminent because for all eternity -- “Christ is all!”


Revelation 4:10-11  "The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, (11) Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created."


Revelation 5:9-13  "And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; (10) And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth. (11) And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; (12) Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. (13) And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever."


·        Christ alone shall be our Reward.

·        Christ alone shall be our Joy.

·        Christ alone shall be our Peace.

·        Christ alone shall be our Love.

·        Christ alone shall be our Vision.

·        Christ alone shall receive our Praise.


This is the ultimate end for which God said in the beginning, “Let there be light.” So “that in all things he (the Lord Jesus Christ) might have the preeminence."


Now I am calling men and women to honor God. I am calling you to honor God. You will either honor God or you will perish forever in hell under the wrath of God. So let me conclude this message by showing you one last thing.


III.            Application -- The only way you and I can honor the infinite, eternal, omnipotent, omniscient, holy Lord God is to honor his Son the Lord Jesus Christ.


John 5:23-24  "That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him. (24) Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."


Let me show you five ways in which you and I can honor the Lord Jesus Christ.


A.            When I acknowledge my sin and my need of Christ as my Savior, I honor Christ.


Psalms 51:1-5  " Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. (2) Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. (3) For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. (4) Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. (5) Behold, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me."


1 John 1:7-10  "But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. (8) If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. (9) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (10) If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."


B.            When I trust Christ as my Representative and Substitute, I honor Christ.


John 3:36  "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him."


C.            When I bow to Christ as my rightful, sovereign Lord and surrender myself to his rule, I honor Christ.


Matthew 10:36-39  "And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. (37) He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. (38) And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. (39) He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it."


D.            When I confess Christ before men in the waters of baptism, at the Lord’s Table, and by personal witness, I honor Christ.


Matthew 10:32-33  "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. (33) But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."


E.            When I preach Christ, I honor Christ.


Matthew 10:27  "What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops."


1 Corinthians 1:21-23  "For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. (22) For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: (23) But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;"


Conclusion: As it is the purpose, will, and pleasure of the triune God “that in all things the Lord Jesus Christ might have the preeminence," so let it be our purpose, will, and pleasure.


1.     Let us each devote ourselves to his pre-eminence.

2.     Let us devote ourselves as a church to his pre-eminence.

3.     May God bring you this day by his grace into harmony with himself, granting you that life and faith in Christ which he alone can give, which will cause you to bow to him and give him honor and pre-eminence as your Lord and Savior.

4.     In all things, let us lift up, exalt, and magnify Christ.


John 12:32  "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me."


God help us to lift him up “that in all things he might have the preeminence!”                                                               Amen.

[1] Part #1 Sermon # 1448 Points 1 and 2, preached at Danville, Sunday Morning – January 7, 2001

[1] Sermon #1248 preached at Danville Sunday Morning -- September 14, 1996

[1] Wichita Falls, TX 9-12-96