I am really late in getting this posted, and I am wishing that I had a laptop to take to the conference. I noticed several people with laptops at the conference, so if you are one of those people and you blog, please let me know because we would love to know what you thought.
We have all been eagerly awaiting to hear from our brother Jeff Noblit this year and he did not disappoint us. Bro. Jeff was under the weather and we thought that there may be a chance that he may not make it. However, the Lord was gracious to us and to Jeff to allow him to come and you would have never known that he was sick at all.
Bro. Jeff preached on Colossians 2:8-15 and he titled it “Jesus Paid it All.” It was an exposition on one of my favorite passages from Colossians. I think that this passage ought to be required to be preached from at every pastor conference at least once.
Although the nature of God is not so obvious in this passage, Noblit reminded us that the nature of God can only be understood in the cross of Christ. He also reminded us that the philosophy that Paul warns us not to taken captive or “cheated” by is the religion of man. The man-made, man-centered religion that we are to be so careful to avoid has been alive and well in many “Bible-believing” churches today. He explained that there is a difference in using the Bible to teach a lesson and in preaching the Bible. We have depended so much on programs and plans of a man-centered approach that we have lost the gospel in the process. As Noblit coined, “We have concentrated on the plan of salvation and what we need to do is concentrate on the Man of salvation.” Christ is God’s exclusive provision. In Him we have been made more than better than we were, we have been made complete.
Circumcision was the symbol of being in the covenant with God and removing the flesh of offense which was the symbol of sin. Why would we want the symbol when we have the real thing? Christ is the effectual surgeon. He marks us as His and He is able to remove the sin and not just symbolically.
Christ brings us new life when we were still dead. Noblit pointed out that death reigned and continues to reign in the human race. However, Christ makes us alive with Him.
Noblit painted a disturbing picture of what the “certificate of debt” that Paul refers to in verse 14. He said that if he had the liberty to imagine what the certificate would say, he would imagine that it probably said, “You shall have no other gods before me – Guilty! You shall appear before the white throne judgment to receive just condemnation for violating the law of a holy God.” Noblit went through the entire 10 commandments repeating the same verdict and punishment. It had a tremendous affect upon us all. Nevertheless, it did not have as much affect as the last part when Noblit describes Jesus taking the certificate and dipping his pen in His own blood and crossing out the document and signing His own name and writing “Paid in Full!” It is a very powerful thought indeed.