In the coming weeks, we will read together through Paul’s letter to the Colossians. I hope these words will encourage your faith and inspire you to “do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Col. 3:17).
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,
To God’s holy people in Colossae, the faithful brothers and sisters in Christ:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father.
Have you ever been sent somewhere? Maybe your mom sent you to the grocery store to buy some milk. Maybe your employer sent you on a business trip to meet with clients. There could be lots of reasons why you might be sent somewhere to do something important, but whatever your mission, being sent implies that the person sending you has placed their trust in your ability to follow through on the job at hand. Your mom really needs milk, so you better bring some home. Your company depends on you to close the deal or satisfy their client’s concern, so you better do your job well.
In the salutation of his letter to the church at Colossae, Paul identifies himself as “an apostle.” That title is often applied to the leaders of the early church and is another way of referring to Jesus’ disciples. The Greek word we know as “apostle” actually means “one who has been sent,” like a messenger or a delegate who is sent to deliver an important message. Paul understood his calling from God as being one who was sent by Jesus to deliver the message of salvation. He was an apostle, one who had been sent. That’s why Paul traveled throughout the Roman world, telling people about Jesus, planting churches and defending the Gospel. Late in his life, however, Paul was arrested by people who opposed the good news of Jesus, and he was sent to Rome under house arrest to await trial before Caesar. So, Paul the apostle could no longer go where he had been sent, but he could still send out the message of Jesus Christ in written form, as he did in this letter to the Colossians.
You may not think of yourself as an apostle, but you have been sent by God. You have been sent to your family, your church and your community to represent Jesus among the important people in your life. You have been sent to your place of work, your school or your neighborhood where you can show others who Jesus is by how you treat people. You have been sent, along with other believers, to carry on the ministry Jesus started. You have been sent, wherever you go in life, to share Jesus’ love and message with those in need.
Thank You, Father, for giving me salvation through Jesus and for sending me to share His message with others. Give me strength by Your Spirit to love the people around me in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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Pastor Mike Mirakian