Only Christ: Don’t Get Caught

“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.” (Colossians 2:8)

Does it really matter what someone believes? Do we have to get so picky about the specifics? Isn’t it enough if someone just believes in the same God we do? Do we have to make a big deal about believing the right things about Jesus?

only_350Yes, it matters! Paul’s fantastic word picture describes false ideas as traps and those tricked into believing them as captives. That’s not inclusive language. Paul is clearly saying some beliefs are right and others are dangerously wrong. The wrong ones are those that don’t keep faith in Jesus at the dead center of a person’s worldview.

Paul refuses to say, “Who knows what the truth is? You believe your thing; I’ll believe my thing. We’ll both be okay, right?” Nope. He says, “I love you too much not to tell you I think you’ve been trapped by a nice-sounding lie. Unless you change your mind and put all of your hope in Jesus, you will stay in that prison of false belief. Get out now.”

Think: Do you ever feel pressured by your culture to not sound so convinced that Jesus is the only hope of being in heaven with the Father forever? How do you respond to that pressure? Is it more loving to pretend not to be certain or to tell the truth as you believe it?

Pray: Ask God to help you not to be taken captive by false philosophies that depend on human tradition and the basic principles of the world rather than on Christ.

Do: Make a quick list of two or three human philosophies that do not depend on Christ.