Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God.
We like the new. It’s an obsession for some. New car, new house, new clothes, new music. In fact, in many ways, our quest for new music is an issue in the church, with record companies churning out music in a quantity over quality fashion in the name of “new” but I digress.
Marketers know this. All they have to do is repackage a bottle of shampoo or laundry detergent with a big sticker that says “New and Improved” and we buy it.
Some false prophets have done the same. Knowing we have “itching ears,” they repackage and sometimes totally reinvent doctrine in order to be the latest, newest craze.
We are warned to not worship angels and an argument is given in Hebrews 1 to that end yet every so often that fad cycles back in the church like skinny jeans.
No, the gospel doesn’t need to be new and improved. It doesn’t become irrelevant. God in all of His wisdom made Christ perpetually relevant. It is His death on the cross that made the forgiveness of sins possible to every person in the last two thousand years.
Often a false teacher who wants to cheat you speaks of “taking his stand on visions [he claims] he has seen” as it says in the Amplified version of verse 19. We should be Bereans – that is, check out anything a teacher tells us.
These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so. Acts 17:11
Colossians says these teachers who try to cheat you don’t hold fast to the Head. Who is the head? Is it the pastor? No. Earlier, Paul tells us in Colossians 1:18:
And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. Colossians 1:18
If the teaching in your church, in a book, or even in a song doesn’t check out, what is the effect on the body? Just like a human body, the head is vital. The brain controls all of our thoughts and emotions as well as body functions both voluntary and involuntary.
Christ is the Head of the Body. His message does not change.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8
Questions for Further Thought:
- What is your impression of this passage?
- Have you ever left a church because of the teaching?
- Further Study: I encourage you to look up the following verses from which the text is based.
- 2 Timothy 4:3
- Hebrews 1
- 1 Corinthians 4:18-19
- 1 Timothy 3:1-7
- 2 Timothy 1:13
- Hebrews 10:23
- Colossians 1:18
- Philippians 3:18-19