Whole Life Whole Bible Day 02

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Colossians 1:15-16 (NASB)

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him.

Colossians 1:19-20 (NASB)

19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, 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.


1: The Lordship of Christ

Jesus… Well, where else could we start exploring the main contours of the biblical story? With creation, perhaps? Yes, and we will get to it soon — though we shall find Jesus there before us. Or, on the basis that we best understand the beginning from the perspective of the end, could we start with the consummation of all things? Again, yes, and that will be in our sights — though we shall find Christ there ahead of us.

Paul wrote letters, not narratives, but it is the biblical story that funds his pastoral engagement with churches, and that story sometimes bubbles to the surface, as it does here in Colossians 1:15–20 (and Philippians 2:5–11), where we are taken from creation to consummation through the cross in six verses. And at the heart of it all is Jesus.

So, we begin with the one who embraces both beginning and end, who stands at the heart of God’s plan for the ages, himself the image of the invisible God, the Lord of creation and redemption — for the sake of his church. Since all things were made through him and all things will be finalised in him, there is nothing left that does not come under his Lordship. The creator, sustainer and reconciler of all is none other than Jesus, the Lord of all.

Along with the confession of Jesus as Lord goes the assurance that there is no part of ordinary, everyday reality that falls outside the orbit of his loving oversight. As Paul makes clear in the rest of Colossians, Christ’s Lordship has implications for every area of life — to the extent that what funds our discipleship, our marriages, our working days and our engagement with the world in which we live is not just the truth about Jesus as creator and redeemer of all things, but our relationship with him as Lord and with each other as his people.

Jesus is Lord — begin here.

For further reflection and action

  1. How does Colossians 1:15–20 broaden our horizons on life, and what difference might that make to how we go about our next task, our next conversation, our next meeting, our next purchase?

  2. Read and reflect on Philippians 2:5–11, noting from the immediate context (2:1–4 and 12–18) how those who are ‘in Christ’ are shaped by the story of Christ.

  3. In the first century Roman imperial context, where Caesar is in charge, there are political implications in confessing Jesus as Lord. What are the imperial rulers — the ‘Caesars’ — of today? How do they exercise their ‘lordship’, and how does Christ’s rule subvert theirs?

Visit LICC to find out more or get an overview of the Biblical narrative and the ways it can shape us by reading the Introduction to Whole Life, Whole Bible from the Whole Life, Whole Bible book.