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Changed by the Gospel

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A Sermon on Colossians 1:3-8

Thanksgiving and Prayer

We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth, just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf and has made known to us your love in the Spirit. (ESV)

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To begin his sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones reads the encouraging words of Paul in Colossians 1:3-8. The apostle describes a summary of the Gospel for the church in Colossae. However, Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out what the Good News has done to this early church. The Gospel has changed them. Paul praises their faith in Jesus Christ, but he also celebrates their love for their Christian brothers and sisters. This new spiritual fruit is no doubt from the power of the Gospel, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says. For once the believer has placed his or her faith in Christ, they are a new creation. God opens their eyes to the sin in their life, and moreover, gives them the power to change. Of course, that person is not perfect, and will still stumble. But the believer no longer loves old habits. That person loves Christ instead. He or she would much rather be with believers than the highest company. This, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says, is one of the marks of a saved person. That person’s life is different than it was before Christ. The old life is dead, and God has made a new creation within, a new life that reflects the mercy and grace of The Lord.


Additional Scripture Translations

Colossians 1:3-8, New American Standard Bible

3We give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, 4since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and the love which you have for all the saints; 5because of the hope reserved for you in heaven, of which you previously heard in the word of truth, the gospel 6which has come to you, just as in all the world also it is bearing fruit and increasing, even as it has been doing in you also since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth; 7just as you learned it from Epaphras, our beloved fellow bond-servant, who is a faithful servant of Christ on our behalf, 8and he also informed us of your love in the Spirit.

Colossians 1:3-8, King James Version

3We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, 4Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, 5For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; 6Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth: 7As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ; 8Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit.


About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.