|Colossians 2 |
1 I want you to know what a great struggle I have for you and those at Laodicea, and for all who have not seen my face in the flesh,
2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and to come to all the riches of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, which is, Christ,
3 In whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
4 This I say, lest any man should deceive you with enticing words.
5 For though I am absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, rejoicing and beholding your order, and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ.
6 Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him,
7 Rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.
8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, following the tradition of men, after the practices and customs of the world, and not after Christ.
9 For in him [Christ] dwells all the fullness of the Godhead in bodily form.1
10 And you are complete in him, who is the head of all principality and power;
11 In whom you are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision performed by Christ.2 [Christ is the anointing, which teaches you all things and which circumcises your heart, cutting off the foreskin of sin and selfishness to become an inward Jew, inwardly circumcised.]
12 Buried with him in baptism, in which also you are risen with him through faith of the operation of God, who has raised him from the dead.3 [From the Word of the Lord within: "Christ is actually resurrected in every person that comes to Him and obeys Him repetitively. With persistent and faithful obedience, you too will be raised."]
13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, he has made alive together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;
14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was hostile to us, and took it out of the way by nailing it to his cross. [Ceremonies, sacrifices, days, feasts, tithing, sabbaths, rituals, etc., are all ended as a means to righteousness, but the moral laws must be still observed and be fulfilled in us: Do we then render inoperative the law through faith? Absolutely not, instead we establish the law. Rom 3:31. Do you not know brothers, (for I speak to those who know the law), that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? Rom 7:1. The moral laws only end when a man's selfish spirit has been crucified on the inward cross of self-denial, and Christ Jesus is resurrected in him to totally control his thoughts, words, and deeds with the Law of the Spirit of Life. See the footnote to Rom 3:28 for more understanding on why the moral laws must still be observed and are your schoolmaster until your thoughts, and words and deeds are under complete control of the Holy Spirit. The blind guides of Christendom point to this scripture and claim there is no longer any sin because the law has supposedly been done away with for anyone who believes in Jesus; they conveniently overlook the New Testaments' many warnings of sin that completely disqualifies you for salvation or heaven, click to see. They also overlook that every man will be judged on his works and words, click to see. yes there is an inner law of God on every man's heart that must obeyed and that includes some of the old Mosaic moral laws such as: love your neighbor as you love yourself; don't steal; don't commit adultery; don't lie; don't covet; don't murder; and honor your father and mother. Every man in the world has these laws written on their heart, and if you continue to sin, every man will receive indignation and wrath from God. From the Word of the Lord within: "There are no laws when you are under complete control of the spirit; you walk in love in obedience as prompted — you don't walk in restricted flesh." Paul said: glory, honor, and peace, are to every man who works good. Rom 2:10. Paul said: To those who by perseverance in good works, seek for glory, honor, and immortality, he will give eternal life. Rom 2:7.]
15 And having disarmed the principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
16 Therefore do not let anyone judge you with respect to food or drink, or in the matter of a feast, new moon, or Sabbath days;4 [There are sects in Christendom that claim to be "true believers" by celebrating certain Jewish feasts. The same is true regarding the Jewish seventh-day Sabbath. "Do not let anyone judge you" means to not accept their judgment or criticism.]
17 Which are only shadows of things that were to come; but the substance [reality] is Christ. [The law was a shadow, (a faint, outline, resemblance), of the reality and substance of Christ, whose coming made obsolete the Law's ordinances, ceremonies, sacrifices, days, feasts, tithing, sabbaths, washings, rituals, etc.; and ended all as a means to righteousness. With the ending of the Mosaic Law, the life of the law became within, the inner law that is on everyone's heart, by which all men will be judged. The moral core of the Mosaic Law is part of the inner law. When that inner law is completely observed by you, (fulfilled), you die to the law through the law; and you then live by faith, hearing and obeying the continuous direction from God in what to do and what to say. Then, it is no longer you that lives, but Christ who lives and rules within you; the fullness of Christ, the substance, has come in you; having fulfilled the law, having been circumcised in heart, and having fully entered the rest. The Law is fulfilled and the righteousness of the Pharisee is exceeded for the righteousness of a man who walks by faith greatly exceeds the righteousness of any man that walked in full compliance with the Law that could only restrict flesh.]
18 Let no man defraud you of your reward by a insisting on voluntary [false] humility and worshipping of angels, venturing into those things that he has not seen [not been taught by the Holy Spirit], vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,
19 And not holding to the Head, from which all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, increases with the increase that is from God.
20 Therefore if you are dead with Christ from the customs and practices of the world, why, as though living in the world, are you subject to its rules [and customs]:
21 (Do not touch; do not taste; do not handle,
22 Which all perish with using), after the commands and doctrines of men?
23 These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in will-worship5 [worship from your carnal mind vs. with words supplied by the spirit], and [false] humility, and neglect of the body; but have no value in restraining the indulgence of the flesh.
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1 In Christ dwells the fullness of the Godhead in bodily form. He [Jesus] is the sole expression of the glory of God, and He is the perfect imprint and very image of nature, upholding and maintaining and guiding and propelling the universe by His mighty word of power. Hebrews 1:3. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word [Jesus] was with God, and the Word was god. God is light. God is a consuming fire. God is a spirit. In the beginning, the light, fire, and spirit called God, created the first-born (Jesus) of all the creation, so that all God's fullness could dwell in him, (Jesus) and then by him (Jesus) were all things created, that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together — so that in everything he might have the supremacy. He was one with God and in the form of God, Phil 2:6. Hear, O Israel! The LORD our God, the LORD is one! Yet for us there is only one God, the Father, from whom all things exist, and for whom we exist; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom all things are made, by and through whom we exist. 1 Cor 8:6.
2 In whom you are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision performed by Christ. This is the spiritual circumcision of the heart: he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit. This is the cutting out of the things in your heart that defile a man: For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile a man. Mark 7:21-23. The circumcision of the heart is to be freed from sin. The anointing of God circumcises a man's heart. The anointing (Christ) within you teaches you all things with grace, which both charges and removes sin, redeeming you from all iniquity (sin) and purifying for himself a peculiar people zealous for good works as directed and energized by him.
3 Buried with him in baptism, in which also you are risen with him through faith of the operation of God, who has raised him from the dead. When your selfish nature dies, on the Day of the Lord, when the Lord slays the son of perdition in you with the brightness of his coming, when the Lord crushes the head of Satan under you heel; then you die, and you share in Christ's death, you then share in his burial, and then share in his resurrection in you — to become your true Lord and Master. From George Fox's Journal:
You must have fellowship with Christ in his sufferings. 1 Pet 4:12-13
If you will reign with him, you must suffer with him. 2 Tim 2:12
if you will live with him, you must die with him. 2 Tim 2:11
And if you die with him, you must be buried with him, Rom 6:4
and being buried with him in the true baptism, you also rise with him. Col 2:12
There must be "a coming into his death, a suffering with Christ;" and this is of necessity to salvation;
and not temporarily, but continually: there must be a "dying daily."
4 Therefore do not let anyone judge you with respect to food or drink, or in the matter of a feast, new moon, or Sabbath days;
Therefore do not let anyone judge you with respect to food or drink,*
From the Word of the Lord within: "Do not judge each other on food or drink." There are several so-called lost gospels or lost books of the Bible on the internet; among other contradictions to the Bible, three of them include doctrines that prohibit eating meat and drinking alcohol, which contradicts this verse and contradict Romans 14:1-3. If you want to not eat meat, that is between you and the Lord, but don't preach it. Realize that there were tens of thousands early Quakers who entered the kingdom, and there is not a single writing from them that advocates eating no meat. Several early Quakers were vintners, merchants of wine. In William Penn's home of the Governor of Pennsylvania, beer was made to serve the guests. In George Fox's Journal, he wrote in several places of his drinking beer and wine, usually mixed with water, and usually when he was so ill that those liquids were the only thing he could keep down. Fox never spoke against alcohol; he defended the usage of alcohol for health and condemned those who served others excess alcohol to drunkenness. Fox cited Paul's advice several times: "For every creature of God is good, and ought to be received with thanksgiving." After the great flood, God gave man permission to eat the animals. Jesus drank wine, and He and his disciples ate the Passover meal that includes the meat of lamb; and even the Levitical priests were required by God to eat the best portion from the meat of the animal sacrifices.
* However, the Lord can restrict us from any food or drink He deems necessary. He can restrict us from foods that interfere with a normal weight or our health, and he can restrict us from alcohol; food and drink are a matter of individual conscience, as educated by the teachings of the Lord. Whatever are our individual food and/or drink restrictions from the Lord, we are not to preach those restrictions to others.
The way to attain salvation and the kingdom is clear.
From the Word of the Lord within: "the way is clear: listen and obey." The tens of thousands early Quakers that entered into the kingdom only had the King James Bible; so be very careful accepting lost gospels or lost books, or lost epistles — always supposedly from one of the twelve disciples, or Mary, etc. Of the many I have scanned, every lost gospel, lost book, or lost epistle has fundamental doctrinal differences with the Bible.* George Fox wrote of several errors in the King James Bible translation, (which you can read), but none of the errors were fundamental differences in doctrine. The way to salvation is clearly stated in the Bible, clarified and witnessed by kingdom-dwelling early Quakers' writings on this site, leaving only the necessity to keep waiting on the Lord and keep obeying Him; not surfing the web looking for more information.
* Three so-called Lost Gospels forbid the eating of meat; one forbids visiting women believers; one says Jesus was not the son of God, but was the forerunner of Mohammed; one says the Jewish dietary restrictions were only metaphors for restrictions in personal conduct, etc., etc.
Therefore do not let anyone judge you with respect to...Sabbath days.
Regarding observing special days, Paul was tolerant, allowing one man to esteem and regard one day above another, and another to esteem every day alike, and similarly about meats, and not to judge one another; "But let every man," he said, "be fully persuaded in his own mind.” Yet to those Galatians, among whom he had labored intensely, he condemns the observation of days, months, times, and years; and he condemned Gentiles becoming circumcised in hopes of attaining righteousness. While observation of a day is a matter of individual conscience, (in which one should be fully persuaded), for a group of believers to observe a special day is definitely wrong, and a form of religion, which is condemned by Paul:* But now after you have known God, or rather are known by God, how is it that you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which you desire again to be in bondage? You observe days and months and seasons and years. I am afraid for you, lest I have labored for you in vain. Gal 4:9-11. And if your church leader says you should observe certain days, or certain foods, you are listening to a false prophet;* as Paul says: Let no man therefore judge you in food, or in drink, or in respect of a holy day, or of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days, Col 2:16. So an individual can choose to celebrate certain days; but the church, as policy or rule, cannot; for that is a form of law. If necessary, the Lord will tell that individual continuing to observe certain days, which ones to stop; thus maintaining freedom of individual conscience.
*The exception is: if you are a Jew that practiced the Mosaic Law and turned to Christianity, you are permitted, (not required), to continue that practice until you have received faith from the Spirit that a portion of the law should not govern you, (as did Peter); for if you think it is a sin to violate any aspect of the law, you are condemned if you violate it. Those who had been Jews were permitted to observe the commands of the law with respect to days, feasts, and food, while those who had been Gentiles were taught to not observe any days, weeks, months, etc., nor to practice any works of the law such as circumcision; and they were not to judge one another about food, drink, feasts, or Sabbath days. Paul wrote: "Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind;" meaning those things were a matter of individual conscience, and the conscience is subject to education by the Spirit. Like all men, a Jew is freed from the entire law when he has been crucified and has died to law through the law.
There are entire sects built around the Sabbath as part of the Ten Commandments, insisting that worship be on the seventh day, instead of the first day of the week. Because Jesus said not one letter or stroke shall pass from the law, they think obeying all of the Ten Commandments is obeying the whole Law. The Law is not just the Ten Commandments — it is hundreds of laws relating to ceremonies, rituals, ordinances, Sabbath restrictions, family life, sacrifices, washings, etc. Obeying the Ten Commandments is not obeying the Law. In 1 Cor 16:1-2, a collection for the poor brothers in Jerusalem was ordered by Paul to be taken on the first day of the week, not on the Jewish Sabbath; and Acts 20:7 states: "Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached to them, ready to depart the next day; and he continued his message until midnight." This proves that early Church met on the first day of the week, and did not meet on the Jewish 7th Day Sabbath. Plus, John referred to the Lord's day in Rev 1:10, "I was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day;" the Lord's day referring to the day of the week he was resurrected. Paul wrote to let no man criticize you for not observing shadows that ended with the substance, Christ: Therefore let no man judge you in meat or drink, or in respect to a holy day [or any special day], or the new moon, or the Sabbath days. Col 2:16-17. The Jewish Sabbath was the shadow of faint, outline resemblance to the substance Christ, whose coming obsoleted all the shadows, including the Sabbath, offerings, sacrifices, circumcision, foods, feasts, holy days, etc.
George Fox wrote on the first day being the Christian's day of worship:
Christ arose from the dead on the first day of the week; and those who believe in him are entered into Christ their rest; the christians meet together to worship God on the first day of the week; and on the first day of the week it was, that God said, "Let there be light, and there was light."
Fox further wrote on the Sabbath-day:
The apostle says, ‘the body was Christ,’ and the Sabbath was a sign and a shadow of good things to come; so then this fulfils Moses' words. The body is Christ, the Sabbath is a sign; so the good things being come, Christ, the substance, ends the shadow, the sign; and Christ rose on the first day, on which the saints met, and the apostle does not call that a Sabbath, nor does establish the other Sabbath among the Christians, nor told them keep it, that you read of anywhere. For if that day had been observed as it was in the law time, the seventh, which signifies perfection, the apostle would have spoken of it somewhere; for those things that were observable were often spoken of in law and gospel, but this is nowhere spoken of, nor to the saints that they should keep the seventh day as a Sabbath, for offerings were on that day. But the offerings being changed; the law also changed, and the offering, Christ Jesus, having come, the law came to be within, and the circumcision within; and Christ, the rest, is the Lord of the Sabbath, and the rest for the people of God. He who holds up Sabbaths and offerings, holds up circumcision and works, and so keeps people from the body and the head, in the signs and shadows, and so in the works of the law, which the law commands.
Christ came not to break the law; the apostle said the law was good in its place, and he established it; yet the apostle says that the Sabbath was a shadow, but the body was Christ, and he brings them to the law in the heart, in the mind, and there he established it. Christ did not come to break one jot or tittle of it, but (mark) to fulfill it; and he said, ‘not one jot or tittle of the law should be broken until fulfilled.’ Christ, who is the rest to the Jew, who had the Sabbath day, a sign of rest, gave the people rest on that day often, that were bound, burdened, or wearied on that day; and Christ, who did give them rest on that day, and the apostle, who establishes the law, which was good in its place, neither of them ordered the Sabbath day to be kept. Christ does not say, the Sabbath day must be kept; and after him, the apostle nowhere commands it, but says it was a shadow, and the body was Christ. So those who came to the body, Christ, in the days of the apostles, had come to the end of the shadows, in that age, in their day; and for example, you may see it, for some observed a day, and some did not, and they were not to judge one another about those things. Christ giving rest on that day that the people were to rest on, was a figure of the everlasting rest, and of the restoration; who did the work of God on that day, and gave rest to the burdened on that day, that signifies an inward rest; for Christ was the rest, and Lord of the Sabbath, the rest to the people of God. Those who celebrate the Sabbath day, must celebrate a sign, and live in the shadow that keeps them from the body, and so from the church, which Christ is the head of. Who are celebrating Sabbaths must also bring their offerings, and then they must have the first priesthood to offer, and so deny the body that does the will of God, the everlasting priesthood, and the one offering, and hold with the first covenant that must decay, in which those things stood; and deny the everlasting covenant, and him that blotted out ordinances, and ended types and shadows. Christ is the end of the law to everyone that believes, in every jot, and tittle, and print of it; and the signs and shadows that were held up by the law, Christ is the end of; yet the life of the law, the power, remains, though the outward changing shadows and things, end, the body is what ends them all.
5 These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in will-worship. "Will-worship" is worship that is pre-planned or worship that is controlled by the carnal mind of man, his carnal mind supplying the words of prayer, praise, and thanksgiving. "Will-worship" is man worshiping in his will, not worship with words totally supplied by the Holy Spirit. The worship of the 41,000 sects of Christianity is nothing but "will-worship," planned by the carnal mind, (which carnal mind is enmity with God); even if sermons and prayers are not read and rehearsed, unless all words are supplied by the Holy Spirit and heard immediately before speaking, such worship is an abomination to the Lord. God is a Spirit, and those who worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. John 4:24.
In vain they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men. Mat 15:9. As today Christendom's worship has man-invented, non-scriptural infant baptism, grape juice and bread, the "Apostle's Creed," the offering, the benediction, sermons, the sinner's prayer, altar calls, confirmation, bible reading, prayers from the preacher, standing to sing, kneeling, bowing to the cross, making the cross with your hand on your body, all the so-called sacraments, etc. All are the inventions of man, not scripture-prescribed forms of worship. Besides corrupting worship as described in the Bible, Christendom does not even recognize behaviors that disqualify it members; Christendom has lost sight of sin, calling evil good, good evil, putting light for darkness; Christendom says peace, peace, when there is no peace; Christendom says to the sinner who walks after the imagination of his own heart, "you are righteous because you belong to our sect, no evil shall befall you." From the Word of the Lord within: "Christendom has gutted the teachings of Jesus and have made the Bible an excuse for remaining immersed in their sins. Christianity has no idea what I am or for what I stand. None of the churches reflect true Christianity. When they pray, they don't pray to God; they pray to their collective conscience." Christendom ignores the Bible's exclusions, requirements, and qualifying conditions. Christendom tells their followers that the law is dead; except of course, they claim you are still required to tithe with your money. Christendom does not understand proper prayer, proper worship, waiting on God, grace, repentance, the inner law, the cross, the rest, the light, salvation, or the word; they perish for lack of knowledge. Christendom has broken the covenant — making the blood of Jesus and unholy thing, used to excuse sin in their members. Retribution for this spite of grace looms.
God is a Spirit, and those who worship him, must worship him in spirit and in truth, John 4:23-24, which is to worship with words supplied by the Spirit, while you are also in Truth, (in union with Jesus, who is the Truth). So worship from your carnal mind, (which is enmity with God), speaking from your mind's will, praying from your mind, reciting a previous teaching, singing from your mind, reading from the Bible without direction — they are all out of a worship that is in spirit and truth, and an abomination to the Lord, including all the so-called sacraments.
The Word of the Lord within has described the programmed will-worship of the sects as "theater!" Think about it, and you can see the will-worship of man is nothing but a staged performance — planned, rehearsed, accompanied by extensive music, often even guided with a printed program — just like a stage play. The only thing missing is an intermission to sell snacks and drinks.
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