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Why Jesus Is Supreme - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
March 17, 2023 6:00 am

Why Jesus Is Supreme - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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March 17, 2023 6:00 am

For centuries, people have tried to make Jesus into something other than who He is—God in the flesh. But in the message "Why Jesus Is Supreme," Skip shares how Jesus is above all, without equal—and why that makes all the difference for you.

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Paul gets down to brass tacks. He basically says in the verse we're about to read, looky here, false teachers. Here's what you need to know about Jesus. He is supreme. He is supreme.

There is no higher. For centuries, people have tried to make Jesus into something other than what he is, God in the flesh. But as Skip shares today on Connect with Skip Heitig, Jesus is not some second-rate deity or just a nice teacher. He is supreme above all, and that should make a big difference in your life. But first- Thank you for joining us today. Connect with Skip Heitig exists to connect listeners like you to God's truth, strengthening your walk with him and bringing more people into his family.

That's why these teachings are available to you and so many others on air and online. If they've inspired you to keep living for Jesus, please consider giving a gift today to encourage other listeners like you in the same way. With your gift, you'll enable the ministry to accomplish Skip's vision to make these teachings available on more radio stations in more major cities across the USA. Just call 800-922-1888. That's 800-922-1888. Or visit connectwithskip.com slash donate. That's connectwithskip.com slash donate. Thank you.

Okay, we're in Colossians 1 as we join Skip today. Let me begin with a true story. This happened to me. I had rented a car. I was returning it to the airport in Atlanta. Hertz rent a car. I pulled in, got out, gave my papers to the Hertz attendant, and she looked at me right in the eyes and she said, you were speeding. I said, pardon me. She goes, you were speeding. She said, the police called.

They have photographed you getting on the on-ramp on Interstate 85 South and there is a fine you have to pay and you have to pay inside $295. She said, you have to pay inside or you will be retained. That's what she told me. Pay or you will be retained. And I'm shocked.

And just as shock comes over my face, she looks at me and smiles real big and goes, just kidding. So here I was believing this new revelation. It was starting to sink in only to find out she concocted the whole story. That is the predicament that the Colossian Church happens to be in. False teachers have come into their assembly and they have concocted a story about Jesus that is fake news. It is not real.

But some people it's starting to sink in and some people are starting to believe false teachings about who Jesus is. You've heard me tell you this before, but there was a family that was going on vacation and there was a thief that was watching across the street to find out when they were leaving. And as soon as they left and went on vacation in the middle of the night when it was dark, the thief came and picked the lock, opened the kitchen door. It was dark inside and he's snooping around with a flashlight and hears a voice. And the voice says, I see you and Jesus sees you.

Whoa, that's weird. So he shines his flashlight to find out what's going on. Can't find anybody. He keeps snooping around. Here's the voice again. I see you and Jesus sees you. Well, this is so weird, but he couldn't locate the voice. Finally, after the third round of that, he shines his flashlight across the kitchen on the counter is a parrot in a cage. And so he just sighs and smiles like this is no big deal. Turns on the kitchen light and down by the counter on the floor is a Doberman pincher, glistening teeth in a crouching position. And before the thief can say anything, the parrot says, attack Jesus, attack.

This illustrates a problem. Which Jesus do you follow? So I follow Jesus.

I believe in Jesus. Really? Which one?

What do you mean which one? Are there more than one? Well, according to Paul the apostle, there are. He wrote to the Corinthian church and said, if somebody comes and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus that we preached to you, you might put up with it. So apparently people concoct stories that are false, but they use the same terminology, Jesus. A lot of people have different Jesus. There's the there's the benign, let anything happen, be tolerant of everybody, pat little kids on the head and smile Jesus. Then there's the good teacher, nice guy, but certainly not God, Jesus. Then other people have the attack Jesus.

They're mad at everybody and everything. And it's always only judgment for them. So which Jesus? Now, I'll remind you of our very first study. When I told you that in Colossae, there was a belief system already at play. We call it the Colossian heresy. And the teaching was a mix between Greek mysticism and Jewish legalism. And this developed by the second century. It became known as Gnosticism. It wasn't known as that yet, but eventually it was known as that.

And this is the beginning of it. And the idea of Gnosticism is gnosis means knowledge. These people claim to know more than everybody else. They had a spiritual inside track to get in touch with God. So they believe basically that God is good, but the material world is evil. Therefore, a good God could not have created an evil world. So He didn't create it, they say. What they say is emanations went out, sub-gods went out, other beings went out, created by God, and one went out so far from God that that emanation didn't even know God, and that is the one that created the material world. They also stated that Jesus Himself was one of those emanations, and that He did not have a physical body. He was a phantom because He couldn't have a physical body.

If He's a good emanation, He can't have anything from the physical material world. So this group of false teachers denied the deity of Jesus Christ and the humanity of Jesus Christ all at the same time. So Paul writes this book, and Paul's answer to all that begins now. In verse 15, after a polite introduction, grace and peace to you, saints, faithful brethren, after stating that, I'm thanking God that your faith is vibrant, you heard the gospel, you believe the gospel, it is evidenced by your love, you have hope in the future, you are replicating yourself and bearing fruit, and then giving a short little list of what He is praying for for them. You will be filled with the knowledge of His will and all wisdom and spiritual understanding that you might walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, etc. Now Paul gets down to brass tacks.

He basically says in the verse we're about to read, looky here, false teachers, here's what you need to know about Jesus. He is supreme. He is supreme.

There is no higher. He's not some second-rate emanation. He is supreme. He's supreme in relation to creation. He is supreme in relation to the church. Verse 15, He, Jesus, He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him, all things were created that are in heaven, that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He, Jesus, is before all things. And in Him, all things consist. And He is the head of the body of the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell. The supreme message of this book, the Bible, the supreme message is Jesus Christ. How many of you know that when you hold your Bible, the greatest message, the overarching message of this book is simply stated, it is Jesus Christ. So when you start reading Genesis and you get the creation of mankind, then you have the fall of man, you immediately have a prediction that the seed of the woman is going to come and destroy the head of the serpent one day.

It's the first prediction. And then you keep reading the story and it unfolds. You get into the historical books. They tell you about the longing for the Messiah, the looking for the Messiah, and the prophets then predict what He will do, what He will be like, what to expect. And then we get to the New Testament and He comes, He shows up, He appears. And there are four books that the New Testament begins with that tell His story, who He was, what He said, where He went, what He did. And then we get to the book of Acts and the book of Acts says that people took the message of Jesus to different places in the world and communities of faith developed all over the place. Then we get to the Epistles and the Epistles are essentially instruction manuals for those local churches to govern their worship activity till we finally get to the book of Revelation, which says that same Jesus is coming back to rule and reign over the earth that He created. So this is why Jesus, when He rose from the dead, met up with those two guys on the road to Emmaus and could do this.

He could do this. It says in Luke 24, beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded to them in all of the Scriptures the things concerning Himself, because He is the supreme message of this book, Old and New Testament. What I want to do is share with you out of these verses five reasons why Jesus Christ is supreme. Five reasons why He is supreme. First, He is supreme because He is the revealer of the Father, the perfect revealer of the Father. Look at verse 15. He is the image of the invisible God.

Now that's Paul's opening line. It's Paul saying, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the only one who makes visible He who is invisible. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. Nobody has seen the Father. God dwells in unapproachable light, the Bible says.

John 1 18, no one has ever seen God, but the only begotten Son who is at the Father's side, literally in Greek, the only begotten God who is at the Father's side has made Him known, revealed Him. When I used to do photography way back in the day, we had a thing called film. I know that people haven't heard of that for a long time, but there's a thing you put in a camera called film, and the film had to be in the dark, and when you would expose it to light, it produced an invisible thing called a latent image. The latent image was then put in a tank, the film was put in a tank, you add developer and fixer and stop bath and fixer, and you can then see what was invisible on that film. And especially if you do the paperwork and you have an enlarger, you watch that image that you couldn't see before come to life right in front of you.

By the developer. Jesus Christ is the developed picture of God the Father. Didn't He say that in John 14? He who has seen Me, finish the verse, has seen the Father.

Remember that? He who has seen Me has seen the Father. God never communicated more clearly who He is than in the person of Jesus Christ. So Paul calls Him the image of the invisible God. The word image here is the word icon. Icon is where we get our word icon. It means a copy or a likeness.

A better translation, He is the exact representation or perfect portrait of the Father. Now real quickly, do you have a Bible with you? Do you have a Bible? Show me. Prove it.

Prove it. Okay, good. I love that. Thank you.

I love when you do that. Turn your Bibles to the book of Hebrews chapter 1. Hebrews is going to help us out a little bit. Not that Paul needs much help in Colossians, but look at Hebrews chapter 1 verse 1. God, who at various times and in various ways, spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds. Who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person.

Other translations do it a better justice. Being the exact representation of His being. Thank you, Hebrews. Thank you for giving us that little extra tidbit of help and information to show us what Colossians 1 means. Everything God wants to say about Himself, He said in the person of Jesus. If you've seen me, you've seen the Father. So if you ever wonder, what is God like?

Here's the answer. Look at Jesus. You know, is God really loving? How do I know God is really loving? Look at Jesus.

That's your answer. Watch Him deal with a woman caught in adultery who was about to be stoned by those men. And Jesus said to her, neither do I condemn you.

Go and sin no more. You're seeing God wanting to forgive people. You ever wonder, will God really judge the world?

I don't know if I'm into that judgment thing. Look at Jesus. He's your answer.

Didn't you walk into the temple twice and take the tables of the money changers and overturn them and take a whip and drive people out? There's your answer. What God wanted to communicate about Himself, He communicates perfectly in His Son, Jesus Christ. So He is the image.

Notice that. Not an image. He is the image.

No second-rate emanation. He's the exact representation of God in human flesh. God has no other son.

There is no other plan. There is no other way to get to God. Only Jesus.

Say that. Only Jesus. Always only Jesus.

So He is the image, the icon, the exact representation. And then Paul calls Him, and this sounds weird to us, the firstborn over all creation. Every cult on earth butchers this verse. And the Jehovah Witnesses are notorious for doing this. They like to use this verse to say that Jesus is not eternal, that He was created first, that God created Him first, and then God used Him to create everything else. That is not what the verse says. He's the firstborn.

What does that mean? How many here are firstborn children? Anybody? Any firstborns?

Okay, so go ahead. Keep your hands up so we know who you are. So you're firstborns.

I'm not. I put my hand up. I'm fourthborn. But because you're firstborn, you have a certain kind of privilege and responsibility that comes with being firstborn. But firstborn kids, at least this is how it was in my house, they got more. I know in our day and age everybody tries to be equitable, but I'm the fourth kid, so I got hand-me-downs. I lived off of shirts that three other boys wore first with all their B.O.

and everything else for years of my life. Firstborn children don't have to do that because they come first. So if you're in Starbucks and you're ordering coffee, you get to the front of the line you're about to order, and somebody walks through the door of Starbucks and cuts in front of you to order.

Are you okay with that? No, you have a problem with that because you were there first. You were there first. So Jesus was there first, but in ancient times the idea of firstborn was even more important than it is now. Firstborn children in ancient days had status, power, privilege, and got way more than anybody else, usually twice as much as every other child. But over the centuries, this term firstborn came to mean not actually born first, but most important. So just like we have a saying, if I were to say, Abraham is the father of all those who believe. Is he literally the father of everybody who would believe in the future?

Did he actually, was he the physical father? No, it's just a saying. Or if we say, if I were to say, my wife Lenya is the mother of love and compassion for all dogs. She's, I mean, there's people who love their dogs, but she's the mother of dog lovers. You know what I mean by that.

She didn't really give birth to everyone who loves dogs. It's a saying. Firstborn became a statement that meant supremacy, not chronology. And that's in the Bible.

Here's an example. Joseph had two sons. Their name was Manasseh. He was firstborn. And Ephraim, he was second born. Yet we get to Jeremiah chapter 31, and God says, because I am Israel's father, Ephraim is my firstborn.

And we might say, excuse me, God, you messed up. Ephraim was second born. God says, I'm making him firstborn.

I'm placing him in a position of being supreme. He gets the firstborn position. Also, God uses the term to speak of the entire nation of Israel. In Exodus, he says, Israel is my firstborn. Didn't mean they were the first nation. There were other nations, many other nations before the nation of Israel. So it's not first in chronology. It's first in supremacy.

So it's a matter of privilege and rank. Now, as time went on, and it's already happening in Colossae, but as time went on through the decades and years and centuries, this denial of who Jesus was sort of reached fever pitch around 325 AD when a guy named Arius from Libya, Northern Africa, who was a heretic. He denied that Jesus was eternal, denied that Jesus was God and was all into this type of stuff. So the church convened at a council called the Council of Nicaea. Some of you have heard of that, 325 AD in Nicaea. They met to counteract that heresy. And this is 1700 years ago, the church is already dealing with this stuff. They had to put out this statement, we believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, light from light, true God from true God, begotten, not made of one substance with the Father.

It's very careful, technical language. 1700 years ago, they wanted to codify for the church going forward, who we believe Jesus Christ is. And they would draw off of what we're reading in Colossians one. So number one, Jesus is supreme, because he is the revealer of the Father. Number two, he is the creator of the world, verse 16. For by him, all things were created that are in heaven, that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. There's a lot in that verse, won't be able to get to it all. All things were created through him and for him. Three times in this section, Paul mentions creation, and that Jesus is the originator of that creation, all of creation in its enormity. Sometimes we think, you know, we're big, and we're important, and it's all about us, and it really helps from time to time if you just get really into yourself and self-absorb for you to just, especially at night, walk outside and look up. You don't even need a telescope, just look up and just kind of realize where you are and what you're looking at. Now that's big.

That's big. That concludes Skip Heitzig's message from the series Always Only Jesus. Find the full message as well as books, booklets and full teaching series at connectwithskip.com. Right now, we want to tell you about a powerful resource to help you uncover God's will so you can boldly follow it. What is God's will for your life? Skip Heitzig has biblical direction. The will of God is not some mystical, impractical, ethereal process that makes you weird. It is not a maze.

It is not a puzzle that you have to put together and figure it out. In fact, sometimes the will of God is so plain and straightforward, the Bible just tells you what the will of God is. Shed the Bible's bright light on your path ahead with Discovering God's Will, an eight-message package from Pastor Skip. You can uncover and understand what the Lord wants to show you about his will.

It's not always easy, but the answers are in there. We want to send you these insightful messages as thanks for your gift today to support Connect with Skip Heitzig and help expand this teaching ministry to more major cities in the US in 2023. So request your copy when you give today and begin to let God direct your path for your good and his glory. Just call 800-922-1888 or visit connectwithskip.com slash offer.

That's connectwithskip.com slash offer. Join us next time as Skip shares why it's so vital that you understand and live out the truth that Jesus is supreme and deserving of first place in every aspect of your life. If he is the pre-existing one, the creator of everything in the world and also the sustainer of everything he made, if he is the originator of the church, then what place should he have in our lives? First place, supreme. First place in our families, first place in our marriages, first place in our friendships, first place in our time management. Make a connection, make a connection at the foot of the cross and cast all burdens on his word. Make a connection, connection. Connect with Skip Heitzig is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never changing truth in ever changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-17 06:38:02 / 2023-03-17 06:47:11 / 9

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