I. God wants us to grow wider by inviting others to Jesus.
· Paul thanks God for the faith the Colossians have in Christ Jesus. The Colossians came to faith in Jesus because they heard and received the gospel from Epaphras, not Paul. Epaphras heard the gospel and was saved when Paul preached in Ephesus then he returned home and did the same. And just as the gospel powerful worked salvation among the Colossians, the same thing was happening all over the known world because the gospel was being share. It is bearing fruit and growing.
· The gospel is for all people for all time. The gospel will not stop but will penetrate into every nation, culture, and language.
· As long as there is one person in Lipan who does not know Jesus, we must do everything we can to grow by one peson.
This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:3–4
9 After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” Revelation 7:9–10
II. God wants us to grow deeper by loving one another in Jesus.
· Throughout the early part of this letter you sense the love that should Characterize Christians.
· Brother – brothers – Epaphras our beloved fellow – servant faithful minister
· Paul thanks God for their love, and love that it is grounded in the Spirit.
· Love can become sacrificial when it is grounded in our hope.
· Parachute – you can jump if you have confidence in your parachute.
· “Faith works by love, and the ground of their love is found in the hope set before them.
· The particular love which the Colossian saints had for all the saints was that agape (ἀγαπε) love which is produced in the heart of the yielded saint by the Holy Spirit, a love which impels one to sacrifice one’s self for the object or person loved.
3 We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. 2 Thessalonians 1:3 (ESV)