Colossians 3:15-17 / The Work of Love

Posted on September 6, 2015


This is the seventeenth in a verse by verse exposition of the book of Colossians. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on the evening of September 6, 2015. This message deals primarily with the workings of love (the result of love, how to learn love, and how to practice love). This post contains an audio recording of the sermon, as well as my sermon notes (sermon notes are not necessarily a complete transcript).

Col 3:15-17


v.15: The result of love:

Once you put on love, you can truly have peace. However, you cannot put on the love of Christ until you’ve received the salvation of Christ.

Peace here, refers to both the call of God to salvation and consequent peace with God.

  • Romans 5:1

This type of peace is a reconciliation with God. It comes because our sins are forgiven. Being reconciled with God, gives us peace with Him. This peace cannot come by man-made means, it can only come after justification by faith. With salvation comes God’s love, with that comes an incomprehensible peace.

  • Philippians 4:7

Peace with God will also promote peace among believers. Peace is to rule in our hearts, which means that in conflicts, peace, whenever possible, should win out. A peaceful heart will be more inclined to thankfulness then one who is in constant strife and conflict. Conversely, if you make it a point to be thankful, you will have more peace.

v.16: How to learn love:

Though we receive God’s love through salvation, if we are to use that love, we need to learn how to love. This is learned through the Word of God. We must let the Word of God dwell in us richly (abundantly).

  • Psalm 119:11

To do this, we need to study His word.

  • 2 Timothy 2:15

It will provide wisdom and perfect us for His work, which includes teaching and admonishing.

  • 2 Timothy 3:16-17

Although the early Christians had access to the Old Testament and freely used it, they did not yet have the New Testament. Their stories and teachings about Christ were memorized and passed on from person to person. Sometimes the teachings were set to music, and so music became an important part of Christian worship and education. Singing, when theologically sound, becomes an important part of praise, worship, and even teaches us (if we pay attention to what we sing).

v.17: How to do love:

After we learn love, we can do love. We can become a vessel of God’s love, sharing it with others in various ways. Everything we do and say, should be done in the name of the Lord. We can share God’s love by the things we do, and we can share God’s love by the things we say.

  • 1 Corinthians 10:31

All that we do, we do as representatives of Christ. Therefore, we are to conduct ourselves in ways that are consistent with Him. We should also be thankful to God in all that we undertake.

  • Philippians 4:6
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:18

If we know the love of Christ, we have the peace of Christ, and we can be thankful. If we allow the Word of Christ to dwell in us, we will not only be recipients of God’s love, but givers of it. In this we will truly be acting in the name of Jesus, and for that we can give thanks to the Father. If you know Christ, what reason do you have not to be thankful?

Posted in: Sermons