The book of Colossians beautifully and powerfully indicates that you really cannot add anything to Jesus and His gospel without subtracting from them. Christ is preeminent – He is before all and above all (Colossians 1:18). He is not merely to be given a place in our life, or even a priority; He is to be given preeminence! He IS our life (Colossians 3:4). In the words of the Holy Spirit through Paul, “Christ is all, and in all” (Colossians 3:11). Notice how the preeminence and all-sufficiency of Christ is dealt with in Colossians.
All Fullness. Whatever makes God “God,” Jesus has it and He has it fully and completely. He has the “stamp” or “image” of God all over Him (Colossians 1:15, 19; 2:9). The New Testament unequivocally affirms the deity or godhood of Jesus! Jesus is not one of many religious options out there. In a very real sense, He is the one and only! (Acts 4:12).
All Creation. All things were created and are sustained by Christ (Colossians 1:16-17). Colossians is more than clear about that. To put it simply, Jesus is either Creator or He is created – there is no other option. For the sake of emphasis, “all” is repeated four times in these verses. Not only that, but in speaking of all creation, Paul mentions heaven and earth, the visible and invisible, and thrones, dominions, rulers and authorities. That pretty well covers everything, doesn’t it?
All Purpose or Completeness. We are “filled” or made “complete” or “perfect” in Him. Only in Christ is ultimate fulfillment found (Colossians 1:21-29). Far too many live off substitutes and accept what simply isn’t sufficient for having true joy and fulfillment (cf. John 15:11; 1 John 1:4).
All Treasures. In Jesus “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” are found (Colossians 2:3). What a marvelous way of speaking about knowing Jesus and the gospel! He really is “the way, the truth and the life” (John 14:6). To know Jesus and His will is to know what matters most in this life and the life to come (John 17:3; Philippians 3:10; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9). In a world that often reminds us that “knowledge is power,” this is by far the most powerful and substantive form of real knowledge.
All Authority and Rule. Jesus really is Lord and Sovereign King (Colossians 1:15-18; 2:9-10; 3:1-2). Some want a Savior but do not want to acknowledge His Lordship. Blessed are the balanced! In properly emphasizing Christ as Savior, one acknowledges the need for God’s love, grace and mercy. In properly stressing Jesus as Lord, one seeks to acknowledge obedience to the will of our King. “And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord” (Colossians 3:17).
All Reconciled. If anyone is going to be reconciled to God, it will be through Jesus and what He accomplished through the Cross (Colossians 1:19-23). Sin separates man from a loving, perfect God (Isaiah 59:1-2; Romans 5:1-11). There is a brokenness in the relationship with God that we simply can’t mend. But broken, weak and ungodly people can be reconciled to God through Christ. And this is potentially true of anyone and everyone! Oh, what a Savior!
All Forgiven. The Cross is the cost for us to be forgiven (Colossians 1:14). The Cross indicates both the wondrous love of God as well as the horribleness of sin. It is extremely significant to consider Colossians 2:11-13 in regard to forgiveness of sin. It is found in being buried and raised with Christ – and this is specifically said to occur at the point of baptism! God operates at baptism to remove our sin through the faith we have in Jesus. Without baptism into Christ, there is no new life; one remains in the old life of sin.
Jesus and His Gospel really are just what this world needs. And as it concerns the soul and eternity, they are all we need. How we need to lift up the preeminence of Christ and the greatness and power of His Gospel!—Mike Vestal