As we've been working our way through Colossians at 6pm, we’ve heard a number of remarkable statements about Jesus. He made all things (Col. 1:16). He sustains all things (Col. 1:17). He has reconciled all things (Col. 1:20). And then this from Colossians 2:3:
‘… Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.’
It’s a statement designed to stop us in our tracks.
Jesus Christ is the source of all wisdom. Jesus Christ possesses a reservoir of knowledge so deep that it is not lacking in any way.
Often it's helpful to consider the flip-side – the negative – in order to get your head around something. Here it is: of all the wisdom on offer out there in the world, one of two things is true – it is either second-hand, having originated from Christ, or it is bogus.
Did you know that the British Library, in an effort to preserve the intellectual record of the nation, has a copy of every single book that has been published in this country since 1662? Literally miles of books. You can rock up and ask to see any item in their collection (though you might have to wait awhile as the collection has got so big that lots of the ‘less popular’ books are now stored up in Yorkshire). Well Jesus is the universal, eternal version of the British library. But with one major difference – he hasn't had to scour the globe accumulating this wisdom. There isn't a statute in law requiring anyone with anything worth saying to send him a copy. No, he authored it all. He is the source of it all.
If we really grasped this, we’d surely be a church full of Marys, delighting to sit at Jesus’ feet, listening to him. Unwavering in our belief that to hear from him is the one thing that is really necessary (Luke 10:38-42).
We wouldn't be sucked in by the lie that the bible is a dull, dated, domesticated book. It’s in the bible where ‘simple’ people like us access Christ’s wisdom and become wise (Psalm 19:7). Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to guide the bible authors so that as we read what they wrote we are brought into ‘all the truth’ (John 16:13-15). Imagine you had the choice between an evening with some of the world's greatest minds – Einstein, Plato, Shakespeare, Kant, Sun Tzu, Tolstoy, Hawking, all in one room – or an evening at RML with some other Spirit-filled Christians reading Jesus’ words in the bible. If you wanted to be exposed to true, relevant wisdom, you’d come to RML. Every time, hands down.
If we really grasped this, we’d never decide to move on from a church that prioritises faithful bible teaching to a church where that is lacking. However compelling our other reasons – ‘the worship is better’, ‘the social scene is more involved’, ‘it’s nearer my house’, we just wouldn't do it. To do that would be to cut ourselves off from the source of all wisdom and that wouldn’t be a very wise thing to do!
You are never too old for a memory verse. Here’s a great one to learn and keep chewing on this weekend: ‘… Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.’