Colossians 3:13 (AMP and RVR 1960)
Paul is writing to the church in Colossae, one he did not establish and one which seems to have mixed pagan culture with Christian teachings; where they worship angels and Christ, teach that self discipline (of food and drink especially) are the keys to spirituality all distracting from the truth of the Gospel (Ch.2).
He gets into Chapter three v.1-9 encouraging the church at Colossae to grow in Christ, to put on the new man, that who has been born of the shed blood of Christ. Forget about all these old teaching, forget about the old ways, seek ye first Christ.
In v.10-12 Paul calls the transformation a Renewal of Life, reminding the believers that they have been chosen and set apart by God Himself to be Holy.
I love the KJV of the Bible, while most have gone to some modern English version ( I usually use the AMP here for clarity sake) I read the KJV daily. I do so for a couple of reasons; one I love its poetic verbiage and secondly all those “difficult” or archaic words make me look things up 2 timothy 2:15 which is a biblical commandment.
I say all that just for the opening line of our main text:
Forbearing one another, – When was the last time you used the word forbearing in a sentence 🙂 yeah me too. But it is a great word; it means: ‘to put up with graciously’. Listen I have yet to find any verse in the bible that says I have to LIKE everyone. Yes it says we are to LOVE our neighbors but that is not the same as liking them. I have lived next to folks that drove me crazy, could not wait to move but I always treated them with neighborly love and respect, I put up with them graciously.
This is doubly the case in a local church. I know I can rub folks the wrong way ( I am a not so soft spoken ex-military type A personality) and there are some whom rub me the opposite. We forbear each other.
and forgiving one another, – OUCH! You mean I have to forgive that jerk who did such and such. Yes in deed, read the book ( a reminder God not man is the Author) God calls His true followers, His Chosen, to be forgivers this is especially true in the context here where there have been disagreements in the church.
if any man have a quarrel against any: – Are disagreements going to happen, of course we are all Sinners (and hopefully in the church setting at least) Saved By Grace. It is human nature to argue, fight or have disagreements.
even as Christ forgave you, – Brothers and Sisters there is only ONE EXAMPLE we need be concerning ourselves with that is Christ and Him Crucified. What Christ did at Calvary Ephesians 1:7 was for the forgiveness of sins, OUR SINS, He is our example.
so also do ye. – Harboring something anything against another person is a sinful act. It breeds anger, resentment, and a host of other ill feelings. That is why Paul here commands us to be like Christ and forgive. Elsewhere in Ephesians 4:26 we read “…let not the sun go down upon your wrath:”
One thing that we have not discussed is bringing the issue to the attention of the other person. I will mention briefly that you have two options; for minor things I usually recommend just letting things go and forget about it. If it is a big enough deal and you need to bring it to the attention of a brother (or sister) Matthew 18:15-17 is pretty clear on how to handle things. Remember all actions are to be done in the Love of Christ.
It is easy to get upset even mad with things going on in everyday life. Maybe you have been effected by the COVID-19 in someway, or the Chaos of the Violent Riots has your blood boiling. Maybe you neighbor dropped a tree on your new fence and is refusing to pay for it or maybe no one in your church has visited you in years.
No matter the issue, hanging on to them only breeds deep rooted anger and resentment. That is why Paul encourages the church at Colossae and us, to keep renewing the new man in Christ. In doing so we shift the focus from the problem to our Savior.
I came across this and thought you might like it:
I Forgive You ~
God forgives me,
and you, I do too
though I’m not happy
with the things, you do.
But, by His grace,
and mercies ever tender
a forgiving heart to you
I am willing to render.
God forgives me,
I am not without sin
daily over kindness
there’s a battle, to win.
But, in His strength,
I fight off the attack
turning to Jesus for
the meekness, I lack.
God forgives you,
for what you’ve done
I forgive you too . . .
because of His Son!
King James Version
“Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another,
if any man have a quarrel against any:
even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.”