Walking is just one step away from falling. At least that’s why I learned when our son began to take his first steps. If you have children you know exactly what I’m talking about. When they begin to walk they are stepping out on unsteady legs. It takes some time, and a whole lot of falling, before walking becomes second nature to them. But they have to begin somewhere. Those months where our son learned to walk gave me the most to anxiety in my short time as a parent. And i’m sure that when he reaches adolescence I’ll have a lot more to worry about it!
Similar to learning to walk as a child, is learning to walk as a Christian. We put our faith into practice one step at a time. Upon becoming a new Christian, there is a radically transformation that takes place. So much so, that Jesus described it as being born again. Not of flesh and blood, but by the Spirit. It makes sense then, that if we’re born again, we need to learn again how to walk. We need to learn what it means to live life differently.
When a person becomes a Christian, regardless of age, we’re all infants. And the Lord does not save us so we can remain in that stage forever. Jesus did not sacrifice his life on the cross so that we could remain apathetic or be neutral. He died so that we could live not only in eternity, but to also live for Him now. The one who began a good work in us will continue to do so until the day of competition - the day He brings us into his eternal presence.
Verses 6 and 7 of chapter two have much to teach us about walking with Christ. Now you have to keep in mind that Paul is writing out of a pastoral concern. In the same way that an overly anxious parent like myself fears their child will take a tumble, Paul is concerned that the believers in Colossae will succumb to false teaching. There’s a group causing trouble in the Colossian church. They’re trying to sell them on the idea that in order to really grow in the Christian faith they need to move beyond Christ. They need to supplement their faith in Christ with some mystical teachings - new teachings that promise to give them greater fulfillment and understanding.
And this isn’t just an issue only common to the first century. The Church has always dealt with this. As C. S. Lewis once said, “Old error in new dress, is error nonetheless.” In fact, just this week someone forwarded me a link to some website being circulated, promoting the very same heresy. The person behind the blog claims to have had a dream where he claims that the Lord was inviting him and others to “to a new level of intimacy and revealing hidden revelations this year.” And if we would only add certain things to our faith in Christ then we could experience these things. Well, that may come across as appealing to some. But first off, the Lord has already revealed what needs to be revealed to you and it is in the person of Jesus and the pages of the Bible.
The Apostle Paul combats that kind of error right here. And he does it by showcasing the supremacy and sufficiency of Jesus Christ. If Christ is truly preeminent and the reconciler of all things then we need not look anywhere else but to Him.
Here’s what you need to know more than anything else as we study these two verses: Your daily walk should never take a single step away from the gospel. In other words, the pathway to a deeper, and more fulfilling, walk in the Christian life is not to begin with Christ and move on to something else. No, it begins with Christ and remains dependent upon him every step of the way so that every time we put one foot in front of the other we are becoming more conformed to His image.