Colossians 1:9

That we might be Filled with the Recognition of His Will in all Wisdom and Spiritual Understanding

"For this cause, namely, that you have 'recognized' the grace of God 'in reality' and are manifesting this recognition by fruit-bearing and increase, we do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that you might be filled, and this fullness is none other than the 'recognition' of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding." (Col. 1:9) Authors' translation according to usage.

This prayer is very much along the lines of that found in Ephesians 1:15-19 where the Apostle prayed that in the sphere of this acknowledgment or recognition, the spirit of wisdom and revelation would be granted. At the close of the prayer, he reverts to this "recognition," and once again, we must carefully examine the original. We must note that there are several readings of the text of Colossians 1:10.

The Received Text reads eis ten epignosin, "unto the knowledge," but the bulk of the best texts read simply te espignosei, the dative case, without either the prepositions eis or en. Some of these readings can be seen in the footnotes of various editions of the Greek New Testament. The Companion Bible notes a few, but textual criticism is a specialized study; consequently, we translate Colossians 1:10: "Being fruitful in every good work, and increasing by the recognition, or acknowledgment of God. "

It is "by" the acknowledgment of God that we both "bear fruit" and "increase," and apart from that acknowledgment or recognition, growth ceases, sight becomes dim, and the keenness that once characterized our pursuit of The Truth of The Mystery wanes.

We believe that the Apostle in Ephesians 1:17 is not concerned with "knowledge"; he, in effect, says, "We must pause for a while. In the charter of The Church, there is enough knowledge to last a lifetime - what is needed is the grace and the willingness to acknowledge the wondrous truth." It is just here that so many fail. We have met those whose intelligence was bright enough for them to see very clearly that with the passing of Israel, a new dispensation was called for. They saw only too well that there were exceedingly different conditions in The Mystery from those obtained during the Acts. They drew back, not because they did not see, but because they saw only too well and realized that a heavy price would be exacted by Christendom if they dared to step out into the full light and liberty of The Mystery.

So, failing to "acknowledge" what they had seen, they soon failed to recognize The Truth and are now quite content with the ordinances and their appropriations of Pentecost. The fear of man bringeth a snare, and "repentance unto the acknowledging of The Truth" (2 Tim. 2:25) is the only means of deliverance.

In Colossians 1:9, the Apostle Paul expresses his heartfelt prayer for the believers in Colossae. He desires that they may be filled with the recognition of God's will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding. This recognition, or acknowledgment, is not simply intellectual knowledge but a deep understanding that leads to practical fruit-bearing and growth in the Christian life.

Drawing parallels with Ephesians 1:15-19, where Paul prays for the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of God, we see the importance of this recognition. It is not just about acquiring knowledge but about truly grasping and acknowledging the truth of God's will.

In Colossians 1:10, there are different readings of the text, but the essence remains the same. By recognizing and acknowledging God's will, we are empowered to bear fruit and increase in every good work. This recognition is not a one-time event but an ongoing process that fuels our growth and spiritual development.

Without this acknowledgment, our growth stagnates, and our spiritual vision becomes dim. The enthusiasm and fervor we once had for pursuing the truth of The Mystery revealed by God waned. It is through recognizing and acknowledging God's Truth of The Mystery in contrast with dogma and rituals that we experience ongoing transformation and become fruitful in our Christian walk.

However, many believers struggle with this acknowledgment. They may have a clear understanding of the changes brought about by the new Dispensation, but they hesitate to fully embrace the light and liberty of God's Church. Fear of societal and religious pressures and the potential consequences of standing firmly on The Truth of The One Body hold them back.

Soon, failing to acknowledge what they have seen and understood ultimately leads to a loss of truth. They settle for religious rituals and the comfort of familiar traditions, missing out on the fullness of God's calling in Christ. Being steadfast, with a renewed mind and a willingness to acknowledge The Truth, is the key to deliverance from this snare.

In conclusion, the acknowledgment of God's Dispensation of The Mystery in all wisdom and spiritual understanding is vital for our growth and fruitfulness as believers. It goes beyond mere head knowledge and requires a humble and willing heart to embrace This Truth. Let us strive to continually acknowledge and recognize God's Word by living according to the knowledge of the church in Heavenly Places where Christ Jesus is Head over all things and allowing it to guide and transform us into the image of Christ.

  • The Word of God makes known The Lord Jesus Christ; Who declares to the Believer our Heavenly Father that we might know Him. God has revealed Himself not according to religious viewpoints but reveals Himself by the written Word.  The Light that illuminates our path makes it possible for all who are willing to walk with Him and to see His clear instructions to live victorious lives in Christian Faith and Practice.
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