Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. (Colossians 3:16)
Let’s break this down a bit…
- The imperative – “let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.”
- The result – “teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”
The result comes about by our submission to the imperative. To put it a bit differently, when we allow “the word of Christ” (the good news, or “gospel”) to live and thrive within us, it will positively affect the way we relate to God and others.
But how are we to gauge whether or not our lives reflect the gospel in this manner? Answer the following questions truthfully, and see if it doesn’t give you an idea.
- How do I view the Godhead (Father, Son, Holy Spirit)? Are you elated by the love of the Father, expressed by the death and resurrection of the Son, revealed by the Holy Spirit? If you greatly value this divine notion of grace and mercy, and if you are fulfilled by this truth alone, it is likely you have a biblically informed and energized view of the Magnificent Three in One.
- How do I view my sin? Are you genuinely humbled by the fact that God, in Christ, has covered over your transgressions (past, present, and future)? Are you deeply remorseful and repentant when you sin against God in your day-to-day experiences? If you see sin as a terrible offense against God, and that drives you to hate it as He hates it, I would submit that you are allowing the Scriptures to be the lens through which you see.
- When life brings about joy or sorrow, what comes out of you? The gospel should be an all-encompassing force in our lives, reaching into every part of it and transforming us. Regardless of circumstance, the hope we find in Christ should resound above our triumphant shouts and mournful groans. We should know the Word, and the Word should overflow out of us for others to tangibly experience (verbally and non-verbally).
Christ-follower, if you find your answers to these questions to be unsatisfactory, ask God to forgive you where you have not allowed the gospel to inform and shape you. In our flesh, we are prone to wander away from the Savior if we do not keep a careful watch over our souls.
The gospel is our lifeline. The One whom it reveals must be our King. This must change everything.
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” and may that result in love for God and your fellow man.