And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him

Colossians 1:9,10 ESV

Paul’s letter to the Colossians is one of the shortest epistles written and yet deals with a very high view of Christology throughout. The primary makeup of the church seems to have been more Gentile in nature versus Jewish. This is seen in the first chapter as Paul begins, “And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds...To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:21,27 ESV). They had been delivered out of darkness and into the glorious kingdom of the Son. Yet, why would Paul feel the need to focus on such a high Christology in this letter?

One reason is that Paul was writing in response to some type of Colossian “heresy” that was infiltrating the church from the outside in. It seems that the Colossians were being influenced by some type of mystical Judaism that had been mixed with folk paganism. People in this belief system were calling on angels to protect them from evil spirits. They were seeking out some type of “fuller” life in God through mystical experiences and aesthetic practices.

Paul’s desire in writing this letter to the Colossian church was to not only refute these ideas but also to admonish the church to understand that they had been redeemed by Jesus, who is “the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation” (Col. 1:15 ESV). The focus for Paul is to help the church understand that Christ is preeminent in all things. It is not to angels that the church should call on for help or to obey, but to Christ who is the mediator between God and man and who holds all things together. The fullness of God and all wisdom is found in Christ alone, and these Colossians believers had been filled in Christ (cf. Col. 2:10). Paul was warning the church against practices that promised visions, heavenly experiences, and angelic visits, but really only offered empty human tradition and a doorway into the occult (cf. Col. 2:8). This was a warning to avoid these practices because they could be an indication that one is cut off from Christ (cf. Col. 2:18-19).

Colossians is such a timely reminder for the church today to not seek out after “more” in any sense that goes beyond what has already been revealed in Christ (cf. Heb 1:2). Many “ministries” and churches today promise more power, more of the Spirit, or more blessings if one will give so much...if one will fast so much...if one will pray so much. Some of these things are not necessarily evil in and of themselves, but the promise of having more than what Christ has already given the church goes beyond sound Christian doctrine. Dear brother or sister, we must guard ourselves against such teachings and find assurance that all of our fullness and hope is found in Christ alone. When we understand this, only then will we understand how to “walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him.”


Gabriel Martinez is currently enrolled in the MDiv program at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and will graduate in Spring 2023. He plans to continue his theological training by pursuing a PhD in Practical Theology. Gabriel has served in lay ministry for over twenty years and has been married to his beautiful wife for twenty two years. They have four kids and three grandkids.