Expository Preaching
J. Michael Shannon and Robert C. Shannon
(c)opyright J. Michael Shannon, 1982
Colossians 2:8-31

A.  The Christian life has both positive and negative aspects.
B.  Although positive, Christianity has to have negative restrictions at times.
Proposition:  In our Christian lives, there are many pitfalls to avoid.


A.  It is empty.
B.  It is based on tradition.
C.  It leaves out Christ.
A.  Salvation of the cross is superior.
B.  Legalism tears the believer down.
C.  The Old Law was but a shadow.
A.  It frees us from human regulations.
B.  It fastens us to Christ our head.
C.  It enables us to grow.
Conclusion:  If we avoid the pitfalls and remain close to Christ, we can be complete in Him.

    Many think that baseball's famous threesome, "Tinker to Evers to Chance," was the greatest double-play combination in the history of baseball.  They were good; but they have been somewhat over-rated.  There have been many infielders far, far better.  It was a poem that brought them more fame than they deserved.  The poem was written by Franklin P. Adams in 1910 for a New York newspaper; and that led to the legend of "Tinker to Evers to Chance."  The power of the press is enormous; but the power of truth is stronger.  Many false ideas are in the world about man, life, religion, and the soul.  Some of them are widely held for a time.  But truth eventually must conquer error.

    A man put this sign in front of his auto repair shop:  "Beware of bargains in life rafts, brain surgery, parachutes, and auto repairs."  There are truly some points in life at which bargains are no good.  When cultists came calling on a man in one village, he said, "Come in. You're offering me a better deal than I'm getting up there at the church!"  We must go beyond that which looks good to find real value, to find the truth, to find God's truth!

    A recent cartoon showed a teenage boy talking to a teenage girl.  He was saying, "I may be a little weak on opinions and convictions, but my prejudices are as strong as any body's."

    In Harry Reasoner's book, Before the Colors Fade, Reasoner wrote an article about Christmas.  He called it "The Truest Thing in the World."  That can be said of the whole gospel.  It is the truest thing in the world.  Many ideas may hold some truth.  They may be partially true or even temporarily true.  The gospel, however, is "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth."  It is indeed, "the truest thing in the world."

    A little sandpiper, flying high above the Mississippi River, can hear the surf from both the Atlantic and the Pacific coasts!  Do we try to tune our ears in two directions?  Do we try to keep one ear attuned for the voice of God and the other for the call of the world?  It won't do!  We must tune out the earthly frequencies and let God alone direct our path.

    Hans Christian Andersen wrote of a mirror that made every good and pretty thing look bad.  Do not many of us have just such a distorted view of life?  Good looks bad; and bad looks good.  We must come instead to the true mirror of God's Word and see things as He sees them.  Then we shall see them as they truly are.

    In many northern cities, when spring melts the snow and cars splash the slush, road crews must come along and scrub the street signs.  They've become obscured!  For many, the spiritual street signs have been covered by human ideas and opinions and prejudices.  We need to wash all that off and see what directions God has given us.

The Maturity We Seek (2:2-7)
Table of Contents
The New Life We Can Enjoy (3:2-17)

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