As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.
When I read the metaphor “rooted and grounded” I think of a plant. The plant starts as a seed, germinates, grows roots, and then it is able to grow tall and branch out. That is a natural process that occurs over time given the right combination of sunlight, water, and soil nutrients.
Unfortunately, being rooted and grounded as a Christian is not a function of time. That is, there is no direct correlation between church attendance, Bible reading, or years served, and the level Christian maturity. Unlike the passive growth of a plant, we have to participate in our own growth and development.
Do you ever wonder why we have to be warned repeatedly throughout scripture not to be deceived?
Earlier in this chapter, Paul was a bit concerned that the church in Colosse would be deceived, after all, they were an indirect church plant and he did not have the priviledge of teaching them himself.
There will always be those teachers who will try to present a counterfeit, for whatever motive, including but not limited to “the god of their belly,” and, more frequently than not, they speak words we like to hear.
The way to combat deception is knowledge of the truth. This intimate knowledge comes with Bible reading, yes, but dare I say that it should be “mixed with faith” and applied to your daily life.
Discernment grows along with your spiritual maturity. Always check with the Lord as Joshua should have when dealing with the Gibeonites.
Did you hear a teaching that didn’t sound right? Be a Berean and check through the scripture yourself.
You could very well be handed a nice shiny box with nothing inside. Don’t allow yourself to be cheated.
Questions for Further Thought:
- What is your impression of this passage?
- Can you recall a time when you were deceived? How did it make you feel?
- How does that change your outlook?
- Further Study: I encourage you to look up the following verses from which the text is based.
- Ephesians 3:17
- Psalm 1:3
- Jeremiah 17:8
- Philippians 3:18-19
- Philippians 2:12
- Ephesians 4:14
- Jude 1:12
- 2 Timothy 4:2-4
- Hebrews 4:2
- Joshua 9
- Acts 17:11
- Hebrews 4:12