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Sermon highlights from Relationship Reset Week 2. Sermon by Pastor Mike Standish; notes compiled by Dan O’Toole.

Big Idea:

  • In Contrast to the World’s Empty Promises of Happiness and Wholeness, Jesus Alone Provides True Fulfillment.

Week 2 Main Scripture:

  • Colossians 2:9-15

The Performance Trap

When the desire for approval drives us, it leads us to think that if we just know more about God or do more things to please him, then he will accept us. But this kind of striving for God’s approval through our own performance is like running on a treadmill – monotonous repetition without forward motion.

There’s nothing we can do for God to make him accept us any more than he already does. He accepts us because of who we are in Jesus.

Hypostatic Union

“For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form,” – Colossians 2:9

In the person of Jesus, there are two complete natures: Divine and Human. The two natures are joined together in a way that doesn’t alter or blend them. Jesus is not 50% God and 50% human. Jesus is 100% God and 100% human.

Jesus’ divine attributes of omniscience and omnipotence are combined with his human experiences of suffering, emotion, and temptation – all without sinning – making him the unique and only person able to bridge the infinite gap between a holy God and sinful Humanity.

Jesus isn’t just a good man or an “add-on” to your life. Jesus is God.

“Other Options” in Seeking Fulfillment

The people in Colossae sought fulfillment in various ways, such as Jewish legalism, Greek philosophy, and angel worship. In the present day, we find ourselves inundated with options promising fullness and wholeness that ultimately just leave us empty and unfulfilled.

Secularism – the idea of a public sphere free from the influence of religion

  • When Jesus is pushed out of the public sphere, it also pushes out the peace, love, and hope he brings.

Individualism – the idea that an individual’s rights and freedoms supersede the collective needs of the community

  • We miss out on the wisdom of the collective whole when we rely on our own wisdom and experience.
  • Individualism fails to live out the sacrificial nature of Jesus.

Religious Pluralism – the idea that people have the freedom to worship whatever and however they want

  • When all religions are considered the exact same and have the same message, it dilutes all of the belief systems down to a central message that conveniently fits what culture wants it to say.

How Jesus Makes Us Whole

1. Jesus Makes Us Whole by Removing Our Brokenness.

Jesus alone brings our salvation by his death, burial, and resurrection. It’s not Jesus plus anything else. In Colossians 2:11, Paul mentions a kind of “spiritual circumcision” we experience through Jesus Christ, which Moses spoke about in Deuteronomy 30:6 – the circumcision of our hearts.

In the deep renovation of our hearts, like in home renovations, God sometimes must dismantle everything before building you back to better. It goes deeper than surface change. The sin and fleshly desires that hold us back from Christ are stripped away so he can give you a new and fresh heart.

2. Jesus Makes Us Whole by Giving Us a Fresh Start.

Colossians 2:12-13 reminds us that we were dead in our sins, yet God made us alive in Christ. Our fresh start is the new life we live in Christ.

But, how many of us live like the walking dead? We’ve been made alive, but nothing in our life shows that because failure, defeat, and discouragement seem to define every part of who we are.

Paul’s message to the church is, “You’re alive in Christ. So, live like it.”

3. Jesus Makes Us Whole by Forgiving Our Failures.

Failure has a way of making us feel less than whole.

In Colossians 2:13-14, Paul uses a courtroom analogy to give us a picture of God’s forgiveness.

Our sin is like legal indebtedness, and the verdict of guilt – which we’re all charged with – carries a punishment with it.

When God cancels the debt of our sin, he doesn’t just throw it under the rug. God doesn’t leave the wrong unpunished. Instead, God nailed our sins and indebtedness to the cross and paid it for us. Jesus took on the punishment for every sin we’ve ever done so we could be forgiven.

Jesus turns our courtroom guilt into a cross of grace.

4. Jesus Makes Us Whole by Securing Our Success.

Colossians 2:15 shows us how Jesus made a spectacle of the dark powers and authorities.

Everything that we experience – the hurt, the disappointment, and the injustice we are fighting against – God has already won. He is victorious.

How Can We Find Wholeness?

  • Pursue Spiritual Health
  • Pursue Relational Health
  • Pursue Emotional Health
  • Pursue Physical Health

Use to pursue spiritual, relational, and emotional health this summer.

Catch up or rewatch the full messages from our Relationship Reset series here.

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