In this post I want to break down Colossians 3:16 and what it says about our motivation. This will be a little different from the normal posts. I simply want to encourage you about focus and where your heart is. In this verse we see the actions we are to perform and the motivation behind those actions.
16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.Colossians 3:16 KJV
I want to break down each line and deconstruct what it is saying. I got a lot out of this and pray you do as well.
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…”
The words “word of Christ” in this first sentence are the words “logos of Christ” in the original Greek. Logos is defined as the written Word of God. This is the physical Bible that you hold in your hands. This is different from rhema which is the spoken Word of God.
Paul is telling us here that we need to meditate on or continually be reminded of the written Word of God. Think about when you read a novel or some book for entertainment. Someone might say something and you are reminded of something that happened in the book. This is the same way we need to be with the Bible. Everyday our normal actions should remind us of things that the Bible talks about.
“…in all wisdom…”
Sometimes we just quickly read past some of these endings without thinking about what they are truly telling us. Here when it says, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.” It is talking about “in every area of our lives”. In other words, it isn’t just about meditating on the Word in one topic. You can’t just pay attention to the Bible when it talks about finances and forget about it when it comes to healing.
“…teaching and admonishing one another…”
Many people like to just stop here. When we as Christians stop the verse here, we end up thinking about the teaching and admonishing in the wrong way. When WE are teaching and admonishing, it comes from us. That means WE are the ones doing it.
This is where you end up approaching people incorrectly. I have seen Christians talk badly about people who aren’t saved or just found Christ. They will talk about them as inferior or approach them from a greater than to less than relationship.
We have to remember that each of us is equal in Christ. It shouldn’t be YOU doing any teaching TO anyone as we will see in the next part of this verse.
“…in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your heart TO THE LORD.”
So if we read the whole sentence together it says, “teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”
You see what we are discussing is our motivation. Paul is saying here that when our attention is focused on worshipping TO THE LORD and not “ministering” to the PEOPLE we end up teaching others.
The end goal is not teaching others through how good our psalms or songs are. You don’t get up to sing songs for their benefit. Don’t even preach for their benefit! You do everything TO THE LORD and as a byproduct others gain something.
I’m not saying anything that most Christians don’t know, but sometimes we need to be reminded.
31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.1 Corinthians 10:31 NKJV
If it’s about your glory, you already have it. Do everything you do not for recognition or praise. Do everything you do for the glory of God. The recognition will come later, and when it does, you won’t care because you never did it for that anyways.
You can check out the previous post here for more content like this.