Sunday School Material 5-9-10: Distinguish Truth from Deceit

Introduction: A key idea in today's Sunday School material is that Christ is all that we need. Prayerfully, we will be challenged to live like Christ is all that we need.

Body:
Read Colossians 2:1-5
I. The Importance of Steadfastness.
Paul wanted to be with his readers, in this first section of the Sunday School material. He wanted to be a source of comfort for them. He mentions the danger of those with enticing words. Paul talks about being with the readers in spirit.

Applications –
- Seeking the well-being of others.
Notice in vss. 1-3 that Paul sought the well-being of his readers. He wanted them to be comfortable. He wanted them to be knitted together in love. He wanted them to be assured that they had all that they needed in Christ.

It is important for us to love one another enough that we seek the well-being of one another. There are some who are so self centered that they only seek their own well-being or the well-being of their group. Let's work on seeking the well-being of other believers.

Love among one another and knowledge about our Christ can be so helpful. It should be no wonder why we need to work on loving one another, as we study and strive to obey God's word.

- Being steadfast. Notice in vs. 5 of our Sunday School material that Paul talks about the people's order and steadfastness. Let's strive to have a spirit of steadfastness. There are too many who do well today, but cannot be trusted to do well tomorrow.

There are too many who do well when the leader is around, but when the leader is away, too many fall by the way side. It is through steadfastness that we grow to experience more of the blessings of God and grow to be a greater blessing from God to others.

For example, steadfastness helps us make it through our tests, so we can have testimonies to bless others. But when we fall apart and quit then we miss out on blessings and being an encouragement to others.

Read Colossians 2:6-10
II. The Way to Steadfastness.
Paul continues with an urging for the readers to stay with the truths they have received, in this second section of the Sunday School material. They are to brace themselves against false teachers. Christ is all that the readers need.

Applications –
- Walking in Christ.
Notice in vs. 6 the urging for the readers to walk in Christ. That is, the people were to not only be familiar with Christ, but they were to live by his teachings. There are too many who hear but don't live by what they hear. They are not doers of God's word.

Let's work on walking and living in the teachings of Christ. At the core of the teachings of Christ are the commands to love God, ourselves, and others (see Mk. 12:29-31). Loving God should at least include studying, worshiping, and giving.

Loving ourselves should include taking care of our health and wealth with an appreciation for how God has been taking care of us all of our lives.

And loving others should include not only being friendly and witnessing, but it should include providing services and empowerment along with being a part of improving systems that often create or enable oppression.

- Being thankful. Notice in vs. 7 of our Sunday School material that Paul urges the people to continuously grow and be known for thanksgiving. In addition to growing in the Lord, which comes from walking in Him (see above), we should be known for thankful spirits.

There are too many people who on one side claim to be Christians, but on the other side, they seem to be so unhappy. Let's work on demonstrating thankfulness.

Thankful people ought to smile, be willing to share the reason for their smile, and even encourage others to be thankful in Jesus. There is something terrible wrong with being a grumpy Christian.

- Avoiding false teachers. Notice in vs. 8 that Paul urges the readers to be aware of people who are trying to lead them astray. No matter how strong we think we are, the devil is out to get us. He often uses people in and around the church to get us to take baby and then larger steps away from the truths of God.

Let's work on staying in the word of God. A key reason for God sending Pastors to feed the people of God and for the Pastor to develop trained discipled teachers to share what God has put on the Pastor's heart is to combat the influences of false teachers. Let's cooperate with God's will for us to avoid the influence of false teachers.

- Being complete in Christ. Notice in vss. 9-10 of our Sunday School material the idea of being complete in Jesus. A foundational method of the devil to get people to follow him is for him to suggest that we are missing something that he can supply. But thanks be unto God, Christians are not missing anything.

We are complete in Christ. Let's remember for ourselves and encourage one another in knowing that we are complete in Christ. We don’t need anything from the devil. We can find the companionship, solitude, fulfillment, provision of material items, fun, and adventure all in Christ.

Conclusion: Based on our Sunday School material, let's work on living like Jesus is all that we need. God has much for those who obey His will.

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