A very good morning to you my precious friends

Colossians 3:16 says “Let the word of Christ dwell richly within you, in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”

The Apostle Paul describes a life that is happy in the Lord. He says that if the Word of God dwells richly in us, then happiness will always be our lot, regardless of the circumstances of our lives.

Even when the storms of life are raging and you are being tossed to and fro from the raging strong winds and heavy floods of life, there is shelter in the Word of God.

In verses 12 through 15, Paul describes ten positive behaviour traits which Christians have (we are purified, holy, and well beloved by God Himself, tender-hearted, full of pity and mercy, kindness, humbleness, meekness, patience, and enduring.

Verse 16 offers an eleventh trait: letting the "word of Christ dwell in you richly." The "Word of Christ" refers to Christ's teachings, found in the Gospels as well as those explained by the apostles. According to Paul, the teachings of Jesus "live" within believers in a powerful way.

Verse 16 lists three specific applications of Christ's word dwelling in the life of a believer. The first two aspects are noted together: teaching and admonition. Christ's Word instructs us, which is "teaching."

Christ's Word also shows us where we are wrong. The Word of our Lord Jesus gives us guidance in how to correct mistakes in what we believe and what we do.

Thirdly, Paul encourages the singing of various types of spiritual songs. Paul never gives preference to one type of music over another. His purpose here is simply to state that all types of music were to be used to let the word of Christ dwell richly within us. This singing was to be done with an attitude of thanksgiving. Singing praise to God is largely associated with showing our gratitude to Him, rather than focusing on ourselves or our own desires.

Let the word of Christ dwell in you”- This is the only occurrence of the phrase “the word of Christ” in the New Testament. The normal way the New Testament phrases the idea of the Bible is “the word of the Lord” or “the word of God.”

Note the word “let.” The word of Christ is ready and willing to dwell in us. The only issue that remains is our choice. The word will indwell us if we let it.

The word “dwell” means to keep house. We should live in the Word of God like we live in our homes. We are familiar with our homes, where everything is kept etc.

We must thoroughly familiarize ourselves with God’s Word. It should become so familiar to us that we know it like the back of our hand. The idea is to let the Word of God dwell inside and live at home in our lives. The Word of God needs to inhabit us.

This is more than just reading the Bible. God wants us to let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts (verse 15), and the Word of Christ dwell in our hearts.

Some people treat the Word of God like a rabbit’s foot or charm. We cannot use the Bible that way. We cannot rub the Bible on warts, and they disappear. We cannot flip the pages of the Bible and blindly put our finger on a verse and claim it. The Bible is no prayer wheel or magic book. We must systematically study the Bible and memorize relevant verses to deal with any weak areas of our Christian life.

In God alone is where true happiness is found. It is in the Word of God where all wisdom, teaching and admonishing, singing, thankfulness of heart to God can be found. It is the Word of God alone that has the power to sustain us in all circumstances of life.

We are told to teach and admonish. That means that we are to teach others the Word of God through message and song. To admonish someone is to warn or reprimand them. We must warn people of what is to come if they do not accept Christ and His teachings. Both teaching and admonishing must come from the wisdom we gain by allowing the Word of God to dwell within us.

It is difficult to discuss verse sixteen without also looking at verse seventeen which says “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”

Whatever we do we must do it in the name of the Lord Christ Jesus. When we sing Psalms and hymns we must do it in the name of Christ. When we read and study the Word we must do it in the name of Christ. When we go to work we must do it in the name of Christ. Every aspect of our life must be done to give thanks to God for what He has done and will do for us in our lives.

So people of God, allow the Word of God to dwell in us richly for strength for the journey of life is indeed found in God and His Word alone. Allow the Word of God to live in us and have a home in our hearts and minds.

Let us pray:

Precious God our Father, we thank You for Your precious Word which is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path. Please help us to spend much time in getting to know You more as we really spend time in studying to show ourselves as workmen and women approved to You. May Your Word dwell richly in us as You speak to us and we become more like our Lord Jesus. We love You Lord. Amen

Much love from Maurice and Margaret