Common Traits of Believers in Jesus

A few months back as Judson and I were leaving church, a friend stopped and was talking to us, and happened to mention that Judson sure has the family resemblance and told Judson he looked like me.  As we walked to the car, he said, I don’t’ look like you, rather incredulously.  I turned to him and said , you don’t think we look alike?  He said no way, daddy you are bald.  I’m not bald!
It’s pretty cool how families have certain visible similarities or mannerisms that resemble one another.  You can tell within moments in some families that they are related.  It’s no different in the family of God.  In Colossians 1:24-29, Paul teaches, that every Christian has some common traits.  

Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body, which is the church, in filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. 25 Of this church I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, so that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, 26 that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, 27 to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28 We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ. 29 For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.

  • A common trait for a believer is  you will suffer for Him and His people.
What kinds of sufferings had Paul endured?  In 2 Corinthians he recounts the hardships he had faced.  As a man who lived for the glory of Christ, he had endured much.  Paul is more concerned about fulfilling his ministry of suffering on behalf of others for the strengthening of the church.  Many of us will never suffer because of the name of Christ, but we sure can enter into the suffering of others.

  • A common trait of a believer is you will to tell others about Him.
Paul says that it’s his God given stewardship to “fully carry out the preaching of the word of God.  The content of this message from God was once stored in His unrevealed plans, but when Jesus showed up, it had been unveiled and made known to believers.
What’s this great secret that was entrusted to Paul and now to you and I?  That Jesus now dwells among and within the Gentiles.  A relationship with the Creator was once reserved only for the Jews or if a Gentile converted.  But now, in Christ all can come to know Him.  Christ in you, the hope of glory.  The revealed mystery that you and I are heralds is Jesus!  We literally have the answer to the mystery of the worlds.  We know truth, His name is Jesus.  
Think of it.  God’s saving mercy, once openly proclaimed only among the Jews through their prophets and in their Holy Scriptures is now being proclaimed far and wide among the Jews and Gentiles alike through the person and work of Jesus Christ!  The Gentiles can now experience all the benefits of being children of God.
That means you and I are now included in the glory and riches of God’s grace.   That means you and I can be redeemed, reconciled, and forgiven of our sins.  That means Christ can live in us through His Spirit, giving us hope.

  • A common trait for a believer is that you depend on Him.
This is the Christian life.  Anybody who has followed Jesus for any length of time, understands that there will be struggles.  Paul uses some strong language to get across the idea that about the struggle involved in a life of obedience.  
How does your life line up?  Do you resemble the family characteristics?  Which ones do you need to work on?
Pastor Chris Williams
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