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Epistle: Colossians 1:15-28

15[Christ Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation;16for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him and for him. 17He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

18He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything. 19For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.   21And you who were once estranged and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, 22he has now reconciled in his fleshly body through death, so as to present you holy and blameless and irreproachable before him—23provided that you continue securely established and steadfast in the faith, without shifting from the hope promised by the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven. I, Paul, became a servant of this gospel.   24I am now rejoicing in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am completing what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church. 25I became its servant according to God’s commission that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, 26the mystery that has been hidden throughout the ages and generations but has now been revealed to his saints. 27To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28It is he whom we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone in all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature in Christ.

From my colleague and friend, Pastor Phil Heinze, these words on the passage:

God was pleased to reconcile all things to himself even though all things seem to be pleased to remain hostile to God’s desire. That hostility did all it could do to destroy God’s pleasure in the agony and abandonment of the cross.

One would think that after being rejected God would be pleased to send the whole lot of us to hell but strangely God finds “no delight in the death of sinners” even if some who claim to speak for God do. That is not to say we are puppets of God’s desire only that God’s will be done might mean that what pleases God might finally overcome the human will to please self and in the same way a moth cannot finally resist the light on a dark night we will be drawn into a love that refuses to be denied.

And the surprise of it all is that when God’s pleasure has its way with us, we become more pleased to be reconciled to others and in doing so double God’s pleasure.

Let us pray: Lord, thank you for your love, in spite of our rejection and ignorance. In Jesus name we pray. Amen

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