Scripture Reading: Colossians 2
When we study the Old Testament Law we find many ordinances and rituals that the people of Israel were to go through. Even the study of the Tabernacle and the Temple will show us many rituals that God had the people to do. The Priest had many ceremonies to perform. This was according to the instructions of God. However, today, God has taken away these ordinances, rituals, and ceremonies. When He called Paul to give the message for today, these things were taken away. In 1 Corinthians 1:22, we read,
“For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified.”
The Lord used signs and miracles and rituals while dealing with the nation of Israel. However, in our text today, Colossians 2, and verse 17, we read,
“Which are a shadow of things to come: but the body is of Christ.”
To really understand this, we must go back up to verse 14 and read. In this verse we are told that Christ blotted out the handwriting of ordinances, or took them out of the way, nailing them to His cross. In other words, Christ fulfilled all the law, the ordinances, the rituals, and the observing of holy days, etc. when He died on the cross. That is why He says in verse 17, these things were only a shadow of things to come.
In our worship today, we should worship Him “in spirit and in truth.” There is no need for outward ordinances and rituals. These things only satisfy and entertain our outward being, or our flesh. In verse 8 of our text we read,
“Beware lest any many spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the traditions of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”
Today many people want to do things because someone has done them for years. So, they will follow along. This would be a tradition. We must go to the Word of God to see if this “tradition” is truly from the Lord and for us today. In other words, each of us is responsible to worship the Lord according to His Word and will (2 Tim. 2:15).
Since Paul is the one the Lord used to give us a message of how to worship Him today, we need to spend much time in the study of the books written to us. In Paul’s epistles, we find much about our worship today. Take time each day to read some of these chapters and see what the Lord tells us concerning our worship today. This is the way we grow up spiritually. We study a little here, a little there, and finally we are mature Christians. The devil would have us get discouraged, and stop studying the Word. If you are saved then, “Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4).