A Deadly Doctrine

Dr. Steven J. Lawson

Lead Preacher
June 4, 2023
Colossians 2:4-8



This is the word of God: "I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument. For though I am absent in body, nevertheless I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good discipline and the stability of your faith in Christ. Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him, established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude. See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ." This is the reading of God's word. Let us go to Him in prayer.

[Prayer] Father, as always, we are aware of our need for the Holy Spirit to be our primary teacher, to open our eyes, to illumine our understanding of Scripture. And yet again, we come to You and ask that He would guide us into all the truth. We pray He would shine light into our minds that our understanding of this passage of scripture would be sound and would be solid, and that You would lead us into living what it requires of us. So we thank You for this Lord's Day opportunity to gather together to worship You and to study Your word. We pray this in Christ's name. Amen. [End]

These verses are a warning, they're a warning passage. As the apostle Paul sounds a trumpet, it's a wake-up call to warn the church about an encroaching threat that will endanger the spiritual health and vitality of the believers; and this looming danger is the infiltration of false teaching that would be brought by false teachers. Wherever there's light, there's bugs, and there are false teachers that are being drawn to this church. And this is always the single greatest threat to any church. It's what happens on the inside of the church, not the outside. On the outside, persecution always purifies the church. The church is always strongest when she is persecuted from the outside. But from the inside where there is false teaching, that is the single greatest danger that can harm a church. And this is precisely what Paul is having to address here in Colossae; and the false teaching is known as Gnosticism.

Now that's maybe a somewhat fancy word, and I don't really want to spend time in tracing it all out for you; but suffice to say, there was a unique brand of Gnosticism, which really became the number one threat to the church in the second half of the first century. It's known as the Colossian heresy. And there are four strands that come from four sources that merge together to form this one heresy; and the entire second chapter of Colossians is devoted to exposing those errors, and I want to take just a moment by way of introduction just to highlight for you these four strands. It's really like four muddy streams flowing together to form one polluted river; and that's what you have with the Colossian heresy.

We will look at the first one, which is in verse 8, which is philosophy, and we'll talk about how damning philosophy is. And then, second, in verse 16, there is Jewish legalism and the attempt to put believers back under the old Mosaic Law, and it would involve circumcision in order to be saved and in order to be sanctified. And then the third strand is mysticism, and that's in verse 18. It involved angel worship. It involved so-called private revelations that "God is speaking to me." And the fourth strand is found in verses 21 and 22, it's asceticism, that "if I don't touch certain things, if I don't eat certain things, if I don't drink certain things, then I will be more spiritual," though God has given all things richly to enjoy. And so when all four of these come together, it was a knockout punch, it was a potent bottle of heresy. And so Paul will walk through each of these four strands one at a time; and today we will simply be looking at the first, which is philosophy.

And let me say this by way of introduction. Nothing could be more relevant for us to be looking at today than this passage, because there is false teaching that is all around us. You walk into a Christian bookstore, false teaching. You turn on Christian television, false teaching. You turn on Christian radio, false teaching. Not to say all of it is, but there's a lot of it there. You surf the Internet, there's false teaching everywhere, and it's aggressive and it's after you, and it wants to affect the way you see God and life and salvation and the Christian life; and it is with us today, it's in many different forms.

Today we have mysticism still with us: "God told me"; and legalism, and universalism, and pragmatism, and secularism, and rationalism, and wokeism, Marxism, and liberalism, and socialism, and feminism, and Catholicism, and progressivism, and humanism, and relativism, and naturalism, and hedonism, and paganism, and skepticism, and existentialism. And as R. G. Lee once said, "In every ism, that ought to be a wasim."

And so that's what we have in this passage, and that's really where you and I live today. These false teachings are just multiplying before our eyes; and they never really go away, they just continue to add more to the shelf. And so I want to walk through this passage, because I want you to be on guard. I don't want you to be naïve. I don't want you to think that everything that has the name "Christian" is, in fact, Christian. I want you to have your antenna up.

The Admonition

And so we're going to begin in verse 4, and I want to set before you "the admonition, the admonition." The word "admonition" means warning; and that's what verse 4 is, it is a warning.

He says in verse 4, "I say this so that no one will delude you." When he says, "I say this," the "this" refers back to the previous verse, verse 3, that "in Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and understanding," and everything that you need to know in your Christian life is found in Christ. You need to have myopic narrow vision on Christ and His teaching. And all the prophets and all the apostles simply support and undergird and clarify more fully the teaching of Christ.

And so he says, "I say this" – that everything is in Christ – "so that no one will delude you." The "no one" here refers to the false teachers, those who have infiltrated the church in Colossae in a rubbing shoulders with the people and engaging in conversation with them, and he says, "so that they will not delude you." This word "delude" means, literally, to cause you to miscalculate the truth, to cause you to be led away from the truth. And it's usually very subtle at the beginning, it's just a step away, and then it's a another step away, until pretty soon there's a pattern that's established, and you've been moved away from sound doctrine.

And so Paul says, "I'm having to address you and warn you so that you do not compromise the truth, so that you will not be bewitched, so that you will not be conned. And these false teachers are stunningly able at selling you error," he says, "with persuasive argument." It's really one word in the original language, and the idea is persuasive reasoning, clever reasoning. We could call it slick talking. Manipulative rationale, deceptive thinking. That's what they are masters at. They can sell ice cubes to Eskimos. I mean, they could sell you on anything. They're masters of their trade of using enticing words.

It's always a threat to the church, and it's always a threat to your Christian life. The whole rest of the Bible warns us of this. Jesus warned of wolves in sheep's clothing. And Peter warns about springs without water, and misdriven by a storm. Jude warns about hidden reefs. These false teachers are beneath the surface; you don't see them until your life comes sailing past and they shipwreck your faith. Jude refers to them as clouds without water. I mean, they are so promising, they just never deliver what they promise to deliver. You hear the thunder, you hear the lightning, but there's never any rain that comes from them.

They are trees without fruit. They are wild waves of the sea. They're so unstable, and their teaching takes them in so many directions. And they are wandering stars; you just never can chart the course of your life, because they're always like a wandering star, darting about. They don't have a fixed message, it's not black and white, it's always on the move. And they introduce destructive heresies, and they malign the way of truth.

Thomas Brooks was an English Puritan, a non-conformist, meaning he came out of the Church of England and was a non-conformist, and he addressed the false teachers in the 1600s, and this is up-to-date you would have thought that he wrote it last night. Listen to this.

"False teachers cover and color their dangerous principles with their fair speeches and golden expressions like, 'You ought to have your best life now.' Many in these days are bewitched and deceived by the magnificent words and lofty strains and stately terms of these deceivers as prostitutes," – and I took out the word that Brooks used for a Sunday morning service – "as prostitutes paint their faces and perfume their beds, the better to lure simple souls. So false teachers will put on a great deal of paint upon their dangerous blasphemies, that they may better deceive and delude poor, ignorant souls." Brooks concludes, "They know sugared poison goes down sweetly. They wrap up their soul-killing pills in gold. False teachers are soul-undoers. They are like evil surgeons that skin over a wound, but never heal it. False teachers are hell's greatest enrichers. Not bitter, but flattering words do all the mischief. Such smooth teachers are sweet soul poisoners."

The Affirmation

And of such men, Paul warns; and of such men, I echo Paul's warning to you. You must be discerning. You must be well taught in Scripture to be able to recognize the lies that they are pontificating. This leads now to verse 5, the affirmation. And Paul now wants to affirm the believers that in the midst of this surrounding danger, that they would continue to be firm in their faith. And so Paul encourages them, or affirms them, in the midst of his sobering warning.

So he says in verse 5, "For even though I am absent in body, nevertheless I am with you in spirit." Now just to remind you, Paul is in Rome in prison, the church in Colossae is in Asia Minor, and they are separated by hundreds of miles. And Paul wants them to know, "Though I'm not with you on site to be able to work through all these issues with you, nevertheless I am with you in spirit. My heart is with you, my prayers are with you, my thoughts are with you," and he says he's rejoicing.

Paul is rejoicing in what he sees in their life. The word "rejoicing" here meaning celebrating and filled with gladness. And so Paul, as he receives the report from Epaphras, he hears about their good discipline and the stability of their faith. In other words, they have not yet bought into the devil's lies from these false teachers; and Paul rejoices, because he wants the church to be strong in the truth.

Now he says, "rejoicing to see." He can't see them physically, because he's separated from hundreds of miles, but he can perceive them in his mind based upon the report he has received, and he uses now two military metaphors. He says, "your good discipline." And in the original language, this this means for soldiers to line up in formation, to be shoulder to shoulder; and as it were, almost arm in arm together, lockstep together. And he rejoices that they have not broken rank. He rejoices that though they are under attack by these false teachers, that they have held their position, they have held the high ground, and they have not sounded retreat, and they haven't been lured over to the other side where the false teachers are, that they have maintained good discipline in the Lord.

And then he says, "and the stability of your faith." And "stability" is another military term, and it means firmness in holding your position when under attack. And they have not been moved away. They have remained loyal to the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ, and they have stiff armed and refused this teaching that is trying to seduce them and to pull them in.

And the whole key is in the last two words of verse 5, "in Christ," because they are anchored in Christ, and they are anchored in the teaching of Christ and in the wisdom of Christ and in the doctrine of Christ and in the world view of Christ; and because they are so attached to Christ, they will maintain their commitment to the truth. And so this underscores the supreme importance for you and me to be well-grounded in the doctrines of the person and work of Christ.

And that's why the book of Colossians is so important, because the central theme of the book of Colossians, to put it in simplest terms, is the sufficiency of Christ, the supremacy and the sufficiency of Christ, that if you have Christ, you have everything. And you don't need to be looking for some other religious experience, you don't need to be looking for some other form of teaching that everything in your Christian life will function with maximum effectiveness as you remain focused on Christ. Hebrews 12:2 says, "looking unto Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith." How did He author faith in you? By looking to Him. How does He build up your faith? As you continue to look to Christ. So we must keep our eye on Christ.

The Exhortation

This leads us now to verse 6, the exhortation – really, verses 6 and 7. And these are very important verses, and I want you to really pay attention to these verses.

Verse 6, "Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord." The word "received" points back to their conversion, when they first received Christ into their lives. This word means to take another person to be your own. The word even means to be married to someone, where the two become one, and you take that other person now into your life. The word is used in Matthew 1, verses 20 and 24, for Joseph who took Mary to be his wife.

And so, at the time they were converted, "they received" – and I want you to note now these next four words – "Christ Jesus the Lord." And Paul uses all three designations to, really, draw our attention to the supremacy and the sufficiency of Christ by mentioning all three.

"Christ" means the Anointed One. He was anointed in the power of the Holy Spirit in his baptism in the River Jordan; and in His sinless humanity he was enabled by the Holy Spirit to carry out His sinless life, and to be sustained upon the cross. He did this in the power of the Holy Spirit within His sinless humanity. He was the Anointed One. And then "Jesus" means the saving One. Literally, Jehovah saves. In Matthew 1:21, the Bible says, "You shall call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins. And then "the Lord," kurios, means the Sovereign One. It means the Ruler, the Master, the King upon His throne. That's what the word "Lord" means.

And so what's important for us to see here is that when they received Christ, they received Him as Lord at the moment of their conversion, Christ Jesus the Lord. And the reason why this is important and is worth noting is that there is dangerous teaching today in this town that says you can believe in Jesus as Savior, but you do not need to submit to Him as Lord, and that you can live your Christian life for five years, ten years, and at some point later in your Christian development you can finally get serious about Jesus and make Him the Lord of your life, on down the road.

And I hear it on an almost weekly basis, and I've heard it almost on a weekly basis for the last 40 years, people coming to me and wanting to know, number one, "When was I saved?" I mean, I heard it this week: "I prayed to receive Christ when I was four-and-a-half, but I didn't get serious about the Lord until I was in my 20s, and in between I just lived however I wanted to live. And so, Pastor, when did I get saved?" And the answer to that is very simple: You were saved when you received Christ Jesus the Lord, not just Christ, and not just Christ Jesus; but you are converted when you receive – listen to this – the whole Christ, Christ Jesus the Lord.

If I came to your house and knocked on the door and you said, "Who's there?" and I said, "Steve Lawson," and you said, "Steve, come in. Lawson, you stay out." Well, I can't come in and tell all of me can come in. I mean, I can't peel my skin off of me and slide it under the door and part of me be in there. It's all or nothing, is it not? Well, the same is true with receiving Christ. You receive all of Him, or you receive none of Him. He doesn't come in installments. And so, Paul is affirming to them that at the point of their conversion, they received Christ Jesus the Lord.

Let me give you a couple cross references that are very important; I want you to understand this. Romans 10:9, "If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord. and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved." If you do not confess Jesus as Lord, you are not saved.

Even after the early service I was standing out in the lobby, a dear, precious woman came up and gave me the same account. When she was four years old she prayed some prayer, and she said her mother said to her, "Now I can – you're paying more attention to me," so I was saved at age four. And I said, "I hate to disturb you, but you're not saved until you confess Jesus as Lord."

There is no easy believism, and there is no cheap grace. To acknowledge that Jesus is Lord means to come to a point in your life where you bowed the knee to Jesus Christ and acknowledge that He has every right to rule every area of your life, and you have no rights whatsoever. He is the King over the domain of your heart and of your life; and for the rest of your life we follow King Jesus. That's what it is to come into the kingdom, it is to be under the King who is the Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 10:13, "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." I mean, how simple is this? In order to be saved you must call on the name of the Lord. And if that happens ten years after you prayed some prayer, it's going to be your point of entry into the kingdom is ten years later when you finally acknowledge that "Jesus is Lord over my life."

Acts 16:30, Philippian jailer, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" You don't want to fumble the ball on this answer. I mean, this is a golden evangelistic moment. If you've ever given a clear presentation of the gospel, this is it: "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" Answer: "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved." And in that answer that Paul gives, he even prioritizes Lord over Jesus, the lordship of Christ over the saviorhood of Christ.

And you know what's interesting in the book of Acts, that has the apostolic preaching of the word of God and the gospel, Jesus is recognized as Savior 2 times, only 2 times. He is recognized as Lord 93 times. The emphasis of the preaching of the first century that brought about the salvation of three thousand souls on the Day of Pentecost that turned the world upside-down was the preaching of the lordship of Jesus Christ.

That's exactly what Paul is stressing here in verse 6: "Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord," – there's no other way to receive Jesus than Christ Jesus the Lord, he says – "so walk in Him." "Walk" refers to daily conduct, the direction of a person's life, to live in this manner. And what this is saying is the way that you are saved is the way you are sanctified. You are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ the Lord.

How do you grow as a Christian? By grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ the Lord. Christ is the key both for your conversion as well as for your Christian growth. And that's why he says here, look at it the end of verse 6, "so walk in Him." The "Him" refers to Christ. You never color outside the lines of Christ, it's all within Christ, it's all found in Christ. Everything that you need to know and do is found in Christ. Everything you need to receive in order to know what to do and what to say, it's all in Christ. It's in His truth. It's in His power. It's in His steps. It's in His example. It's in His will, His guidance, His grace. It's all in Christ. Listen, if it's not in Christ, you don't need it. If it's not in Christ, you don't want it. Everything that you need and that you want is found in Christ.

Now look at verse 7, "having been firmly rooted," that points back to their conversion in verse 6 when they receive Christ Jesus the Lord. That was when they were firmly planted and firmly rooted in Christ. Now this indicates that they started someplace else. If they now are rooted in Christ, they were rooted someplace else. They once were living in a desert, they once were living in a barren wasteland, and someone came and uprooted them, and transplanted them in Christ. And that's what regeneration is, that's what the new birth is: you become firmly rooted in Christ.

Now I want to draw this to your attention as you read the beginning of verse 7 in your Bible, in your English translation, one thing that you clearly can see is that this verb "having been firmly rooted" is in the passive voice. That means someone else firmly rooted you. You didn't transplant yourself, right? It would be in the active voice if that were so. But this is in the passive voice. You were spiritually dead living in a desert, and the grace of God came and uprooted you, and has now planted you in Christ. That's what Psalm 1:3 talks about: "How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counts of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He will be" – verse 3 – "like a tree planted by streams of water." He didn't start there, he's been planted there. That's the miracle of the new birth. So, it's in the passive voice. God and God alone was the sole agent who was active in your new birth.

The second thing that I want you to note here, it's in a verb tense, it's called the perfect tense; that simply means this: It is an event that was completed in the past, but continues into the present. And so, as you were planted in Christ in the new birth, you have stayed in Christ. It happened in the past, continuing into the present. No one will ever be planted in Christ and then no longer be planted in Christ.

It's amazing. I post things on social media, and anybody can answer anything they want on Twitter, it's amazing; and how many people cannot get it into their head that you cannot lose your salvation. And it's just shocking all of the bogus teaching that's out there, as people are parroting such, as J. Vernon McGee would call it, sloppy agape, just bad teaching. So having been firmly rooted, you are firmly rooted in Christ, and you will always be firmly rooted in Christ.

Now notice what he goes on to say: "and now being built up," and this is referring to sanctification, this is referring to your Christian growth. And please note, you can even see it in the English translation, the verb tense changes. It's no longer looking to the past when you were firmly rooted with continuing results into the present. This is now the present tense, now being day by day, moment by moment, being built up. This is ongoing spiritual growth and development. Everyone who has been born again will be growing as a Christian. There is no such thing as a Christian who is not growing to some measure, to some degree; You are being built up in your faith.

And then he says, "built up in Him." And again, the focus is upon Christ. The "Him" is Christ. As someone as well said, "The whole Bible is a Him book, it's all about Him," the Lord Jesus Christ. And so, "built up in Him," in other words, Christ is the fertile soil into which we have been planted. Christ is the one who transplanted us, and He transplanted us into Himself in reality.

And then he concludes, verse 7, "and established in your faith." That too is in the present tense; but I just have to tell you this. It's in the passive voice, which means someone else is keeping you established. Even when you feel weak, even when you feel like just throwing your hands up, even when you find yourself in the midst of a trial and a catastrophe, and you don't feel like you have the strength to go on, someone else is establishing you in your faith. They are keeping you strong on the inside. Even if you may be collapsing on the outside, there is a spiritual backbone, if you will, that is keeping you established in your faith.

And then he says at the end of verse 7, "just as you were instructed." Now that looks back to the beginning of their Christian life, and this is in a different verb tense that conveys a snapshot of their life. Like their whole life, Christian life is just one picture, it's not a reel-to-reel with multiple frames. Your whole Christian life would be described by this, "just as you were instructed," that from the beginning of their Christian life, they were well-taught in the word of God by their pastor, Epaphras, and it has continued to the present.

And this underscores the importance of being instructed, that the Christian life necessitates that you be growing in your knowledge of the truth of the word of God: "just as you were instructed and overflowing with gratitude." People who overflow in gratitude are those who are being well-instructed in the word of God. Those who are poorly instructed in the word of God are collapsing in the midst of trials, in the midst of difficulties. They go through life seeing the glass is always half empty, not half full.

But for those who are being instructed in Christ Jesus, they are overflowing with gratitude. Their mouth is a fountain, a perpetual fountain of giving thanks to God for Christ and what God is doing in that person's life. Do you not see this in your own life? Do you not see the more that you grow in understanding the profound doctrines and truths of Scripture, that you just rise up and give thanks to God for more and more and more, that, "I never realized that all of this was going on that God is doing in my life." Well, I trust that you do. And if you need to have more gratitude in your Christian life, you need to have more truth in your mind and in your heart.

The Deception

Well, this leads us now to verse 8, and that's the deception. And Paul now tells the Colossians about this danger. The first element of this danger that will be pulling them away from walking in Christ, and it is philosophy.

So notice he says, "See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy." This is really worth just looking at very carefully. The word "see" indicates you need to keep your eye out for this. You are in a dangerous place, and there is swarming around you false teaching, and you can't go to sleep, you can't close your eyes. You need to keep your eyes open for this danger.

"See to it that no one," and the "no one" refers to the false teachers. They are the same "no one" as in verse 4. "See to it that no one takes you captive." To taken captive means to be kidnapped, to be taken as a prisoner, to be put in chains and to be led off. And that's what false teaching does; it ties you up in such a way that you can no longer walk in a manner worthy of your calling.

And what is it that causes you to be taken captive? He says philosophy, through philosophy. What does the word "philosophy" mean? Well, you can see the first part of the word phileo, means love. Philadelphia is the City of Brotherly Love. And "wisdom" is sophia. You put those two words together and you have philosophy, which means the love of wisdom.

Now this wisdom refers to worldly wisdom. It refers to man's attempts to understand the basic issues of life. Philosophy is a worldview. It's how you see the world. It's how you see yourself. It's how you see civilization. It's how you see the world of education. It's how you see the world of politics. It's how you see the world of medicine.

There's a philosophy, there is a worldview, and this worldview, this philosophy in verse 8 of which Paul warns is coming out of Athens. It's coming out of the academy, or as Plato and Aristotle and Socrates and Seneca. And it's man's attempt to answer these basic questions: "Who am I? What am I? Why am I here? How did I get here? What is life? What is life all about? How should I live? How do I find happiness? What is marriage? What is a woman? What is a man? What is a family? What is death? Who deserves to live? What is on the other side of death?" Philosophy attempts to answer those questions, basic questions that need to be raised and need to be answered; and worldly philosophy provides man's solutions to these answers.

Philosophy can be summarized this way: "For from man and through man and to men are all things. To man be the glory forever and ever. Amen." Philosophy says that man is the source of all things, that man is the reason for all things, that man is the means for all things, that man is the purpose for all things in the universe. That's philosophy. And if you were a philosophy major in college, you were taught the bankruptcy of man's attempts to resolve these fundamental, basic answers. And they're drawn from the empty wells of man's deluded thinking.

And he now describes philosophy in the middle of verse 8 when he adds, "an empty deception." Paul says it's all empty, it's vain, it's worthless, it's fruitless. In fact, it's fraudulent, because it's a lie, and it's a deception that is so well camouflaged that it lures in with kind of an intellectual stimulation to be drawn in to try to answer these questions in a esoteric, philosophical way; but in reality, it's nothing. In fact, it's worse than nothing, because it will damn your soul.

And he goes on to describe it. He says, "according to the tradition of men." It just all comes from men, and it gets passed down from one generation to the next, and one century to the next. And so what started way back then with the early Greek philosophers, it just becomes more sophisticated; so it's not becoming better, it's actually becoming worse with each passing century, and it's just all being passed down by the tradition of men. He says according, "to the elementary principles of the world."

Now "elementary principles" is just one word in the original language, and it means a row of letters: A, B, C (alpha, beta, gamma, whatever). And what Paul is saying is it sounds profound, it sounds deep; but just because a river is muddy doesn't mean it's deep. It's very elementary. It's just A, B, C. It's actually kindergarten, it's actually pre-kindergarten-level thinking. It's childish. It's nonsensical. It's infantile. It is simplistic. The world applauds it as being brilliant, and Paul says, "No, it's absolutely stupid really." And I want to give you four examples of it today, four examples of it today of the stupidity of the world's philosophical worldview of the world in which you and I live.

Here's the first one: "The universe came out of nothing." Can you think of anything stupider than that, that nothing times nobody equals everything? That's not profound, that's stupid. If there was ever a time when there was nothing, then there could never be anything. Nothing cannot come out of nothing, and yet that's what the world, that's what our educational system, that's what our scientists are being applauded as stunningly brilliant; and it's like the old short story of the emperor who had no clothes on, and a little boy standing by the side as the emperor goes by without any clothes on, everyone is applauding the emperor, and the little boy just says, "Look Mommy, he doesn't have any clothes on." And suddenly everybody is awakened. That's the nonsense of evolution, it's stupid.

I'll give you another one: "Human life does not begin at conception." That is insane. That is irrational. There's a heartbeat in there, there's a human body in there, and it's inside of a human. I mean, what do you think that is? You think it's a tree? I mean, do you think it's a whale? That's a human. How philosophy can twist and corrupt one's worldview.

Here's another one: "You can be whatever gender you want to be." I don't even have a vocabulary to respond to that. That is the stupidest thing that I have ever heard in my life. The reality is two things for such a person to say that. Number one, you have a severe mental health problem. You need to be locked up in a padded room, and your driver's license taken away from you. The second thing is you are desperately sinful, and your mind is darkened and blackened where you cannot even think straight, that you think that you can now change your gender, or would even want to change your gender. I don't care how much you change, you still are what you are.

And then the fourth nonsensical philosophical worldview today is, "There are an unlimited number of genders for you to choose from." So it's not just two, it's not just a man wants to be a woman, but you can just invent your own gender. And there's 38 genders, there's an infinite number of genders. You can just create your own universe and just be whatever you want to be. No, that's where philosophy takes you; it is the logical conclusion of worldly thinking that leaves God out of the equation, that God is the Creator, that God is the giver of life, that God has defined genders, that God is the one who has selected your gender; and if you strip God out of this, you are left with a mind that cannot function.

So no wonder Paul warns the church in Colossae about the empty deception of philosophy. And then he ends in verse 8, he says, "rather than according to Christ," according to His teaching: Christ's truth, Christ's doctrine Christ's worldview. Solus Christus. Listen, the philosophy of this world and the teaching of Christ are in direct opposition to each other, they share no common ground. The two are mutually exclusive, not inclusive. The two are intolerant of each other. The two are antithetical to each other. The two are incompatible to each other. The two have nothing in common whatsoever.

It is truth, and it is lie. It is light, and it is darkness. It is heaven, and it is hell. And so no wonder Paul has to speak to the issue: "Do not let this get in your drinking water. Do not let this even get started." It's not just neutral, it's not harmless. It's not, "Wow, that's a new perspective." No, it's an old perspective; it is as old as the garden of Eden and the serpent. It has the hiss of the serpent in it.


So, you must decide how you will live your life: to live according to the world's agenda is a fast track to eternal destruction. And there is no other destination to which it'll take you. To live according to Christ and His truth leads to eternal glory, and it will surely take you there.

So which will it be for you? If you are to live for Christ, it begins by receiving Christ as Lord and as Savior, to believe in Jesus as Savior, as the only one who can rescue you from eternal destruction, and give you the life that God intends you to live. But you must also receive Him as Lord. You must come to the place where you yield your life to Jesus Christ, where you bow the knee to Christ and acknowledge His supreme authority and His right to rule over your life.

And if you have never come to that place, today is the greatest day for you to do this. If you have never bowed the knee to Jesus Christ and received Him as Lord and his Savior then I invite you in your heart right now in the quietness of this moment to commit your soul and entrust your life to Christ, confessing your sin and repenting of your sin, and throwing yourself upon the mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ; and you will find a Savior who will receive you, and you will find a Lord who will receive you as you would receive Him. So may God give you that grace this day. Let us pray.

[Prayer] Father in heaven, thank You for these verses in Colossians. We need to hear this. And I pray that You would make us discerning, that You would make us those who are well-taught in the Lord Jesus Christ, and not gullible and not susceptible to the lies of worldly philosophy that would seek to pull us away from the black and white truth that was taught by the Lord Jesus Christ. So, Father, this is our prayer, in Jesus' name. Amen. [End]

Well, may the Lord bless you and keep you, and cause His face to shine upon you, and give you much peace. God bless you.