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May 2, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Now when this epistle is read among you, see that it is read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that you likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.”—Colossians 4:16 (NKJV)
As Paul begins to conclude his letter to the Colossian Christians, he gives them a few quick commands, and we see one of them in the preceding passage. He tells this congregation in Colossae to not only read this epistle among themselves, but to then share it with the church in the adjoining city of Laodicea, which was about nine miles away.
Not only that, but we also learn that Paul had written a sperate letter to the Laodicean church which was to also be shared with the Colossian church. We don’t know much about this Laodicean letter, but some scholars suggest it was actually the Epistle of Ephesians, which had also been in circulation at that same general time and place. Regardless, these letters were meant to be shared and circulated among the churches. They were shown the things of God, and they were to then share the things of God.
This pattern of being shown and then sharing the things of God is still a thing! What Paul commanded the Colossians nearly two thousand years ago is what the Lord invites us to do today. By His Spirit, we are shown the things of God, not just for our own benefit, but so we may then share them with others. The difference; however, is that whereas the Colossians had a single epistle to share, we have the entirety of God’s Word from Genesis to Revelation in our possession to share!
When we hear that, our minds probably go in the direction of sharing the message of the gospel with those who don’t yet know Jesus as their Lord and Savior. It certainly includes that, but there’s much, much more to it than that. It also entails us sharing what we’ve been shown within our own families, among our closest friends, and wherever we experience Christian community.
Our sharing should start with our closest connections, and it should then ripple out from there. When this becomes our healthy habit, sharing the things of God with those we don’t know well becomes much more of a reality, because it has become second nature for us to share. If sharing the gospel with others is a struggle for you, start sharing with those closest to you and you’ll be amazed at how much joy you’ll find in sharing with everyone.
God is continually working and revealing truths concerning Himself to His people. As He shows us these things, may we be eager to share them with those He brings into our lives, both near and far.
DIG: What simple principle do we see in Paul’s command here?
DISCOVER: How does this principle apply to us, today?
DO: Just as the Colossians were instructed to share this letter with the Laodiceans, this month, find ways to share what God is showing you with friends and loved ones. You never know . . . maybe God will use what you’re sharing to change someone’s life!
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.