Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. Colossians 3:12-14
The book of Colossians should be a manual for every Church, there is so much practical instruction and wisdom here. First notice Paul addresses the Church as the “Elect of God”, yes, if you are a Born Again Christian then you are the elect of God, you are a Child of the King, you are part of the Body of Christ. And that’s why this letter applies to all of us Christians, nobody is exempt from these teachings
The next part is Paul describes the fruits or characteristics we should be demonstrating or producing as Born Again Christians. Compassion, mercy, kindness, humbleness, meekness, and patience, does this describe you or your Church? If not, maybe you need to work on that, or maybe your Church does also. The Church is always an interesting entity, so many different people coming together for the same common goal, Jesus Christ. When we bring together all these different people, we have conflicts, however we need to learn to love one another as Christ loves us
As Paul instructs here “Bear and forgive with one another” There are going to be times when your Church family hurts your feelings or does something wrong against you, we are called to forgive them because Christ has forgiven us. Now this should be going both ways, we should forgive any quarrels or fights we may have with one another in the Church. I know this sounds easier then what it really is, but remember the battle doesn’t belong to you, it belongs to The Lord. The Church is the body of Christ, Jesus is the Head of the Church, those Christians who don’t act appropriately will have to answer to Christ himself, not just us
What is the bond of perfectness or unity? It’s love, as Peter said “Love covers a multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8) Remember even when we didn’t deserve mercy or grace, Christ gave it to us anyway, why? Because Christ loves us, our fellow Church family might not deserve to be forgiven however we forgive anyway, why? Because Christ loves us and demonstrated that love for us all on the cross
There is no perfect Church because there are no perfect people. So let’s stop making excuses why we hate everyone at our local Church, there are a million reasons why God could hate us, be God chooses to love us anyway, because God is full of grace and mercy. We need to be more like Christ , and love the Church as Christ loves the Church
Therefor , elect of God, the Church, bear the fruits of the Holy Spirit, and love and forgive one another, in Jesus name Amen!
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