[God] has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.
21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, 23 if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister. – Colossians 1:13-23
I’ve noticed something about the way my wife and I deal with leftovers differently. It may have to do with our unique personalities and approaches to life. Her’s is decidedly more reserved than mine. That’s not a critical remark. In fact it may be a complement. I might could learn something from her. What has that to do with dealing with leftovers? I’m inclined to eat the last two tablespoons of the roasted veggies, or piece of salmon. She’s more inclined to save them for tomorrow’s veggie omelette or salad. Or when we do put them in containers, I’m often choosing a smaller one than she would. “It’ll fit in this one,” I’ll remark.
Which brings me to this delightfully mysterious truth in verse 19. All the fullness of the deity was pleased to dwell in Jesus. This is another way to say, “The Word became flesh.” This is another way of saying that Jesus is not just the son of Mary, but the Son of God, from eternity true God, and for a while true man on earth.
I am struck by the idea that God put himself into human flesh. He took on bodily form. He became one of us. He did not remain aloof. He did not wipe out the world that he had created, even though man had corrupted it by his waywardness and rebellion. He came to deliver us. He came to reconcile all things to himself through the cross of Jesus. It took a man to redeem lost mankind. And God put himself fully to the task of it.
“Two mighty words; ‘fullness’a substantial, comprehensive, expressive word in itself, and ‘all,’ a great little word including everything. When combined in the expression, ‘all fullness,’ we have before us a superlative wealth of meaning.” (Spurgeon)
Even more importantly I note that God was pleased to do this. Reconciling us and all things to himself. Doing it through the cross. Coming to earth and dwelling in bodily form. Making all this happen through the cross – the death of His own son. God was pleased to do this. The Greek word, εὐδόκησεν, is an expression of God’s pleasure and indicates that God was not begrudging in this act of reconciliation and salvation. The word has the same root as is used at Jesus’ baptism, “This is my Son, with him I am well pleased.” It enlarges God’s heart to see us redeemed, reconciled, restored, and rescued.
God is all in for us, and pleased to be so. Where do we need to reflect that today?