“He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.” Colossians 1:18 NASB
The verse above contains four separate concepts all rolled into one sentence in our English Bibles. The first one, “He is also the head of the body, the church;” reads quickly and we do a mental, “Of course” and travel to the next phrase. It is so easy to do in these packed verses. Yet, let’s slow down a bit and allow a small “unpacking” or “unfolding” of this verse.
The “body” has a head. The “body” is believers in Jesus Christ. The “head” is Jesus Christ. We need to really receive this, because it is a fact in the Spirit. When we become His, we are born into His Body. That Body is the church. (Not a particular organization but a gathering). When we remember this, we will be able to receive all the Lord says about us and our position in Him, such as co-heir, etc… without getting out of shape about being Him in our world. He is always the head; we are always the body! He is leading, we are following where the head leads.
Now we need to add to this passage another one that brings much joy and comfort to me every time I think and meditate on it.
“I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word; that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that you sent Me. The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, (better translation – “into oneness”), so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.” John 17:20-24 NASB
We are one in Him. The first acceptance dimension is very personal; I am one in Him; You are one in Him. We are in His body and one with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This is the work of the new birth. Once “born from above” my entire being is now His. The Holy Spirit lives inside and there is no distance between the Father, Son, Holy Spirit and me. We are one. The emphasis of this passage of scripture is not what happens between you and me, but what happened between me and my Lord. The “you” and “me” part is a by-product of what He has done.
Then “…that they may be perfected into oneness.” The word here for perfection means completion, or finished, or consummated. In other words, everything I am is at peace and rest because I am one with Him. It is a bit different than our understanding of perfection. It is a receiving of all He is, as He has received all I am.
So embraced in His person, I am His body. Now go back and read Colossians 1:18 again at the first of this post. Huge!
Thank you, Lord Jesus, for all your love and inclusion. May each of us delight in this “oneness” and begin our days in the sweetness of your presence and peace.
Thank you for reading.