This is a passage in which Paul reminds his readers of the Supremacy of Christ (the church at Colasse had encountered some heresies) and what Christ had done for them. As I read it I remembered some like passages in Acts which the Lectionary covered this winter. I was reminded of how I had been struck then by Paul’s earnest devotion to his readers and his repetition of this theme, “all you need is Jesus.” For me it was like remember how friends encourage me and I had to smile. Perhaps that is part of what we do as a church and the benefit of encouraging each other in the disciplines of prayer, Scripture, and fasting, as many youth group members are doing now; we remind each other, “all you need is Jesus.”
Can you think of a time when you’ve been embarrassed? Fallen down at the bus stop or forgotten someone’s name? Worn your clothes inside out or forgotten a piece of clothing? Paul here reminds us that Jesus has absolutely humiliated the powers of darkness. Sure, being crucified is humiliating, but Paul says that Jesus by his cross crushed his dark opponents. This is a military illustration which Paul uses; his readers were familiar with the sight of Roman generals stripping their conquered opponents of their weapons-and clothes, and marching them through the city streets, making a “public spectacle” of them (v 16).
As we go about our tasks today, how would Paul say we react to this reminder of God’s goodness? Verse 7 is a great summary, “rooted, strengthened, and overflowing”- rooted in Him, strengthened in the faith, and overflowing with thankfulness. Paul says, we’ve heard so much good news that our lives can overflow with thanks to God. Thank you, Jesus.