Colossians 3 - Key


And whatsoever ye do, do [it] heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;

Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.

We should do our work and whatever we do as if we are doing it for the Lord, because He is the one who will ultimate reward us, good or bad.


I'm taking some college classes, so I'll do my school work excellently, as if I was doing it for the Lord Himself.


Colossians 3 - Outline

remove these earthly sins
we are new people in Christ
put on a new person
special instructions for wives, husbands, children, and fathers.
servants (and all of us) should serve as to the Lord, realizing that He is the rewarder


"decorating" a beautiful heart

1 Peter 3


Whose adorning let it not be that outward [adorning] of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;

But [let it be] the hidden man of the heart...

Women can get very excited (and sometimes even carried away) with decorating themselves, or and trying to make themselves beautiful. Instead of that, they should redirect that same zeal and excitement to having an excellent heart in the sight of God.


"yet for a little season"

Revelation 6


And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?

And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they [were], should be fulfilled.

Here we see a glimpse, as though through a little window, into something that goes on in heaven. Here we see that these souls, at whatever time this describes, cried with a loud voice. The Lord would listen to them, because they were His servants, and He would value what they said and take revenge on the people who martyred them.

Who were they crying to? O Lord, holy and true. What were they crying for? How long... dost thou not judge and avenge...? They were anxious for the Lord to execute judgment and vengeance on the earth-dwellers. Here was something that was inevitable, and something that would be coming true. The Lord listened to them.

v11a says, ...white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season... The Lord didn't ignore their requests. He responded and did something about it. He gave them something and reassured them that the right thing would happen at the right time--but, at the same time, it seems like He didn't just do exactly what they wanted Him to, right then. Why not? Who did they want the Lord to take revenge on? Them that dwell on the earth.

The Lord is delaying judging us because of His mercy. We still have a chance to repent today, but there's a call in heaven for vengeance, a call that won't be ignored for too long. How long would it be, at this point? Yet for a little season. In the face of this inevitable judgment that the Lord will bring, for which the souls of His servants in heaven are crying with a loud voice, let us be zealous today, to repent.


be serious about repenting from sin

Revelation 6


And there went out another horse [that was] red: and [power] was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.

People are going to be killed in the judgment of the four horsemen, and that just makes me think about how we need to be serious about repenting from sin.

Romans 6:23a
For the wages of sin [is] death...


1 Peter 3 - Key 2


And who [is] he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good?

But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy [are ye]: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;

I know that these verses, in context, are really talking about suffering for righteousness' sake, but I think we can learn something more general from them, too. I noticed v14b: ...be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled. v6b teaches women not to be terrified about things: ...as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement [terror].

Romans 8:31b says, ...If God [be] for us, who [can be] against us? We don't have to allow ourselves to be afraid, terrified, or even "troubled", by anything, while we are in Christ.


1 Peter 2 - Key


Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed [himself] to him that judgeth righteously:

When Christ was reviled, He didn't revile back. That word for revile also means to reproach, rail at, ... [or] heap abuse upon. When people talk that way to us, we shouldn't talk the same way back.


If I feel like people are talking the wrong way to me, I'll make sure to trust the Lord and not talk the wrong way back.


Colossians 2 - Key

The Sufficiency of Christ

Key v8
Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

We should avoid getting into counterproductive arguments with people that get our focus onto outward physical things of this world, and distract us from emphasizing Christ.


Sometimes I fall into half-way serious debates about things of little importance, just for fun, and then it turns into a real argument. When I find myself starting to do that, I avoid arguing about those things and remember that our relationship with Christ is the important thing.


1 Peter 2 - Outline

we should want the Word
we are like living stones built into a spiritual house, with Christ as the main corner stone
He is for stumbling to those who are disobedient
we are supposed to be a special people to praise the Lord for what He has done for us
do good so that people who would criticize us wouldn't have anything to say
Christ was an example of suffering for righteousness and not returning evil for evil
the gospel of Christ's suffering and death on the cross to heal us from our sins


Colossians 2 - Outline

Paul's great desire for believers who have not seen him personally, to still have fullness in Christ
don't get sidetracked from faith to other things
we are complete in Christ
He has done much for us, delivering us and forgiving us
ceremonial foods, drinks, and days were just symbolic things, but Christ is the thing
don't let anybody trick you into things like worshiping angels instead of upholding Christ
worldly ordinances about outward behaviors might look good, but they are not the thing


1 Peter 3 - Key


But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and [be] ready always to [give] an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

We should always be ready to answer people and tell them the good news of Jesus, in case they ask us some question that gives us that chance. This verse reminds me of:

2 Timothy 4:2a
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season...


I'll think about how to answer and share the gospel with people, not just when I'm going out in a special time to preach the gospel, but anytime during the ordinary course of a day.


1 Samuel 6 - Summary

All it took, was a look

Note: There is a larger than usual number of Scripture references in this post, and I did not take the time to create links to all of them, so you might want to look them up yourself. BlueLetterBible.org lets you paste in a phrase or reference, click Search, and see the passage.


The Philistines in this chapter showed honor to God, because they feared Him.
reminds me of Lord, I believe; help thou my unbelief. All it took to save the Philistines was enough belief to come and see, and the Lord poured out grace. For the Philistines to find the Lord's grace, I have created the saying: All it took, was a look.


v13-15 and 19 remind me of Luke 8:13. At first the Lord's people received the things of Him with joy and honor, but then fell into sin and were judged.

v19: Like Hebrews 10:28-31, ...the Lord shall judge His people. 1 Peter 1:17-19: ...Pass the time of your sojourning here with fear.... (1 Samuel 6) v19: My saying about what it took to have the faith to come to God, also applies to sin: All it took, was a look. They did not fear God and treat His holy things with honor like He had taught them that they should. There are some ways that we can sin the same way today: Matthew 5:28.

Key v20

And the men of Bethshemesh said, Who is able to stand before this holy LORD God? and to whom shall he go up from us?

It said, Who is able to stand before this holy LORD God? He is Holy, nobody can stand before Him. Like the Lord smote 50,070 men of Bethshemesh (v19), we are not immune to God's judgment just because we are His own people.

There are two ways we can take that. We can get discouraged and go away, like Bethshemesh did here, and really missed out. That is the same mistake the foolish servant made in Luke 19:20-24, especially v21.

Or, like in Luke 19:22, if we know He's strict, v23 we ought to be faithful to Him. Then we can be even like the Philistines in 1 Samuel 6, and have boldness to come to God with faith, and find grace. See Hebrews 4:16.


1 Samuel 6 - Outline

the plan to send the ark back
the test to see if the plagues were a coincidence or from God
the test succeeded: the dairy cows carried the ark directly back to the Lord's people
the people of Bethshemesh initially received the ark with joy and honor
the Philistines' golden offering recounted
people in Bethshemesh sinned, and many of them died, so they asked others to came fetch the ark from them


1 Peter 3 - Summary

This chapter starts out talking about husbands' and wives' behavior. In v1-6, it talks about the good behavior that wives should have, and how wives can even win over their husbands to the Lord by their good behavior. It talks about submission and putting the emphasis on having an excellent heart instead of on having an excellent outward appearance. v7 talks about the kind of behavior that husbands should have toward their wives.

Next, after husbands and wives, the chapter talks about the kind of good behavior that all believers should have. We should return blessing and good for evil (v9), and pursue peace (v11). It is important for us to remember to not speak evil, and to maintain honesty (v10).

This chapter bring up an interesting point about prayers being heard or hindered (v7,12). It is possible for prayers to be hindered because of our evil behavior, and it is possible for the Lord's ears to be open to our prayers because of righteousness. A powerful prayer life goes with having a life of holiness.

Then, in the 6 verses from v13-18, there is much instruction for everybody about suffering. Since we're going to have to suffer in life anyway, it is better to maintain a clear conscience and suffer for doing good and following the Lord, than to just get the suffering we deserve for our sins. If we suffer for the Lord, He will be with us and help us through it, and repay us abundantly afterward. We have Christ as an example of suffering for righteousness (v18).

Finally, this chapter talks about the gospel, and about preaching the gospel. We should always be ready to preach the gospel (v15), especially to answer people about our hope when they ask us. (And that is even when we're suffering.) This good old message is all about how Christ suffered and died for our sins, and rose again from the dead (v18,21). He gives us a good conscience by spiritual baptism (v21), as water baptism is a symbol like Noah's flood. And now, He has gone up to heaven and is exalted far above all (v22).


Colossians 1 - Key


For this cause we also, since the day we heard [it], do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

Verses 9 through 11 give a good example of how we should pray for believers who we have heard, have had faith, love, and fruit.


I'll pray for the families who meet with us, and the families who used to meet with us, that the Lord would fill them with the knowledge of His will and understanding, and that they would walk with the Lord with strength, patience, and joyfulness.


1 Peter 3 - Outline

wives can win over their husbands by being a good example
wives should put their emphasis, not on their outward appearance, but on having an excellent heart
holy women of long ago, like Sara, were very submissive to their husbands
it is very important for husbands to dwell with their wives with knowledge, and to treat them with honor
we should all have compassion and forgiveness for each other
the Lord listens to the prayers of the righteous
while we are following the Lord, we don't have to be afraid
always be ready to answer people about our hope
if we are going to have to suffer, it is better to suffer for doing good than for doing evil
Christ suffered and died for us, and then rose from the dead and is now far above all

Colossians 1 - Outline

Paul and Timothy introduced themselves and sent greetings and blessings to the saints at Colossee
especially thank God and pray for those who have faith and love
the gospel brings fruit
how to pray for the Lord's people
how to give thanks to God
how great Christ is, as the creator, the head, and the reconciler
laboring and suffering to help the Lord's people continue in the faith and be presented perfect in Christ


refuse old wives tales

1 Timothy 4


But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise thyself [rather] unto godliness.

When we get into discussions with other people, like when we are going out sharing the good news of Jesus, we need to avoid getting caught up by foolish and contentious questions and arguments. We should avoid and refuse those things, and pay attention to, and stick to wholesome teaching instead.


God was manifested in the flesh

1 Timothy 3


And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.

This verse is one of many that shows us that Jesus and God are one and the same. God was manifest in the flesh, and eventually, received up into glory. How could He have been received up into glory, unless He, at one point, left His glory and came down in the flesh (in a physical body as a human), as Jesus did? After Christ died and rose up from the dead, He ascended up to heaven and was received back up into glory. Therefore, Christ must be one and the same with God.


God wants all people saved

1 Timothy 2


Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

We should be bold to preach the gospel to everybody, because the Lord wants everybody to be saved.


Titus 3 - Key


[This is] a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.

It is true and important to remember that we are saved by faith, not by good works. However, that does not mean that good works don't do any good. Now that we have believed on the Lord, it is still good and important for us to keep doing good works.


Sometimes I get tired, resisting temptation and trying to do much serving. In those times, I'll remember this passage, that I need to maintain good works in order to be fruitful.


Philippians 4 - Key


Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, [my] dearly beloved.

This time, I really noticed that this verse says to stand fast in the Lord. It's easy to get weary from battling against temptation, and from doing much serving, but when we feel that way, we should remember this chapter.


I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

When I feel like giving up on doing what I should, I'll remember that Christ enables me and trust Him to help me repent from the sins that are behind, and then forget them and press forward toward what He wants me to do, in prayer.

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.


Titus 3 - Outline

remind people to have this excellent behavior
remember that we were just as bad as other people, so we shouldn't behave arrogantly against them
remember that we didn't save ourselves by our own good works, but God saved us as a free gift, by His love and mercy--so we should treat other people the same way, despite their sin
even though good works are not what saved us, they are still very good and important for us to teach and do
avoid strivings and heretics
fellowship, hospitality, and greetings

Philippians 4 - Outline

stand fast, be of the same mind, and help the fellow-laborers
rejoice and show moderation
don't worry, pray about everything, give thanks, think on good things, and follow Paul's example-- and the Lord will guard your thoughts with His peace
through Christ we can be content in any situation
it is good to give to the needs of those who live for the gospel
a great promise that God will supply all of our needs, through Christ
glory, greetings, and grace


truly Christ came to save sinners

1 Timothy 1


This [is] a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

It said this is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation. Does that sound like he was exaggerating or being sarcastic to you? It sounds to me like it is good wholesome words, and that he meant what he said.

Of course, it doesn't mean anything like that it would be just fine and inconsequential to continue on being sinners. The wages of sin is death. What it does mean is that is what Christ came and died on the cross for. Those of us who know this, now that we have received it by faith, it ought to change our lives.

But what it does mean, is that we shouldn't say, I can't talk to you about God now, because I have been sinning. I can't come to God now. No, that is what Christ came for! The Lord knows that we have been sinning, He loves each one of us anyway, and He gave His life to lift us up from our lost state, and save us, and give us everlasting life.

Even this writer in the Bible had sinned. He said it was a faithful saying that he was the biggest sinner of all--but Christ came to save sinners, and Christ saved Him. So, next time you feel like saying you don't want to hear about God or pray because you have been a sinner, even a big sinner, know that Christ is there for you. That's what He came for. He will save you for your sins if you just come to Him.


the problem of wasting time in Bible times

2 Thessalonians 3


For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.

According to Thayers, busybodies means, to bustle about uselessly, to busy one's self about trifling, needless, useless matters. Wow, how that hits the nail on the head, describing our problem with laziness today.

I don't know about you, but with the pervasion of modern entertainment media (videos, online news, Facebook, surfing the web, etc.) wasting inordinate amounts of time with these inconsequential vanities can definitely be a sin that so easily besets me. I group my wasting of time into the following categories:

entirely vain or counterproductive activities
fine things to do, but mis-prioritized and at the wrong time (too early, too late, etc.)
fine thing to spend a little time on, but a vain or counterproductive amount of time to spend on it at this time

As a practical application from this passage, I'll generate a report of how I've used my time, from my time-tracking system, and give the report to the accountability partner I've gotten to help me with my problem with wasting time.


established in every good word

2 Thessalonians 2


Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God...

Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.

This teaches us that we should be established in every good word and work.

It is interesting that it says every good word. That reminds me of how we should be bold to speak the things we should.


Titus 2 - Key


Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

It doesn't just say, denying some ungodliness, so, instead of being satisfied with repenting from most sins and doing most things right, this points toward a new way of zeal for victory over our sins and to live righteously.


Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

This says that he might redeem us from all iniquity, so, I'll be zealous to go after a couple particular hard and big issues in my life.

Titus 2 - Outline

speak wholesome teaching
how certain groups of people should behave:
older men should be sound in faith
older women should be holy
young women should take care of their families
young men should be sober minded
you yourself should be a good example and speak good teachings
servants should show fidelity
grace teaches us to live righteously
speak these things with authority


grow in faith and love

2 Thessalonians 1


We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;

This is the way we should be. We should grow abundantly in faith, and in love toward every one of each other.

So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:

We should also be patient and have faith when we suffer for His kingdom. When we are patient and have faith through suffering, that is evidence that God is righteous to count us worthy of His kingdom.

Even when we suffer and have a hard time, let's be patient and grow in faith and love. Especially work on showing the love of the Lord, abundantly, to all of the other believers.

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