“whom we proclaim, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus;”
The gospel is proclaimed. It is proclaimed in all its richness and glory before all who will listen. The purpose of God’s message is the changing of the dark human view into the glorious light of God; the resurrection of dead souls to eternal life; the beginning again of a new life in Christ. The message is simple and clear… repent and believe. We turn from the sin that infests us and walk in the light of God rather than the light of our own darkened eyes. We believe in the person and work of the only Saviour of souls, the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the centre of the message, for He has humbled Himself and shed His blood that we might be redeemed from the empty way of life we all follow in this life.
When the gospel is spoken, we implore people to turn and be saved. It is the imperative. We must believe or be lost eternally. The choice is very clear and stark. Believe or perish. We teeter on the brink of disaster and hardly know it. We feel so safe and secure until trouble comes and we are cast into doubt and sorrow. This often drives us to God and the search for a Saviour’s love. This is one of the situations that God often uses to bring people to faith, because we will never come to God until we see our abject need.
If we continue on the natural trajectory of our lives, we will land in perdition. This is the message of warning from a loving God. He is holy and all His judgments are just and holy. He warns us of impending judgment for our sin and to seek the refuge in a Saviour’s salvation so that we are safe from the consequences of our own folly. The cost to us is free. We are set free from our sin and given new lives to live for the glory of God and the comfort of our souls.
We must be clear about who we are trusting in. There are many false views of Christ and many deniers of hIs person, who He is as the eternal God, and able to save and change the human heart. We tend to make a Jesus after our own ideas rather than looking intently into the Scripture and finding out what He is like as He presents Himself to us. It is easy to construct an idol and many do this and are deluded. Jesus is not like us, He identifies with us, but is the perfect God and lived a perfectly obedient life, unlike us. His motivations are different from us and all His words and deeds were for the glory of the Father in heaven. We must be sure we are really following Him and not someone presented to us falsely.
We follow His perfect ways and become more and more like Him. This is the purpose of our Christian life to refine us and conform us to the view of God and not our own ideas. We need to be taught in all the wisdom of God, and we continue in the Lord, learning and growing all through our Christian lives.
The purpose of the Apostle Paul in this letter is to teach the Christians what Christ is like that they might be more Christ-like in life and speech. One day we will be presented as perfect before the Father as the redeemed and glorified people of God. Until then we seek to be like Him, as He is revealed to us in this letter, and in all the Scripture.
“that I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, becoming conformed to his death, if by any means I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect; but I press on, that I may take hold of that for which also I was taken hold of by Christ Jesus.”