December 5, 2019

A Polarizing Person

Colossians 1:15–20

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The Preeminence of Christ

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by1 him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.


[1] 1:16 That is, by means of; or in

A Polarizing Person

Key Verse | Colossians 1:19-20

For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

Bio | Jonathan Pokluda

Hi! I'm Jonathan to some, JP to many, Lovey to one, and Daddy to three. It has been a privilege to serve on staff at Watermark for over 13 years and watch God start a movement through Young Adults called The Porch. When I understood who Jesus is, everything in my life changed. How I talk changed. Who I hung out with changed. The way I dated changed. What I did for fun changed. What I read changed. The way I treated people changed. How I saw the world changed. And eventually, what I do for a living changed.

[Editor's Note: JP left Watermark staff in December 2018 to become the senior pastor at Harris Creek in Waco. He wrote this devo before he left Watermark staff, and we are running it to say thanks for his many years of faithful service at Watermark. JP is doing well, and we miss him!] 

Central Truth

Jesus is who the Bible says He is. 

Devotional | Colossians 1:15–20

Remember that dress from years ago that divided our country? Some saw blue and black, and other really brilliant people saw white and gold (#TeamWhiteandGold). Be it politics, denominations, or the...

Remember that dress from years ago that divided our country? Some saw blue and black, and other really brilliant people saw white and gold (#TeamWhiteandGold). Be it politics, denominations, or the right way to face the toilet paper roll—we have plenty to argue about. None of these is more polarizing or more important than who Jesus is. Since He showed up in a manger 2,019 years ago, people have disagreed about who He is, and it really matters. Some say He's just a man, others say He's a prophet. Colossians 1 clears this all up and leaves no questions.

1. He is the visible image of the invisible God. Jesus is the representation and manifestation of God. (John 14:9)
2. He is firstborn over creation. Jesus existed before and is sovereign over all of creation. 
3. He created and sustains all things. Abraham Kuyper said, "There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, MINE!" (John 1:3; Hebrews 1:2)
4. He is the head of the Church. Our head tells our body what to do. Likewise, Jesus is the head over His body, the Church. We do as He pleases. 
5. He is the firstborn from among the dead. He not only was resurrected from the dead, but He is seated in "the highest place" and has been given "the name that is above every name." (Philippians 2:9, NIV)
6. He is fully God. Enough said. (Colossians 2:9)
7. He is the reconciler of all things. Imagine a movie where a child is taken from his or her family. Then, someone with special skills is hired to go and find the child and bring him or her back to the father. This is Jesus in the gospel. Jesus turns the enemies of God into friends by His blood shed on the cross. He paid a price for our sins, purchasing us back to the Father. That's good news!

I don't care what you saw in the dress, but make sure you know who Jesus is. 

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Discussion Questions

1. Who do you think most people believe Jesus is?

2. How would your life look different if you actually believed Him to be the Creator God? 

3. What does Colossians 1:19 mean? 

4. How are you doing at being the hands and feet of Jesus?

9 Comments available

Jonathan Pokluda about 1 year ago
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Thanks friend!

Kelly Nix about 1 year ago

Welcome Back dear friend (if only for Advent)! He is the Head of the Church…Don’t we know that! What a joy to witness the Advent message spread from Camp prayers to Dallas, Ftw, Waco, NYC, S.Africa, S.Dallas and beyond. He still confirms a foundation secure. So glad to be on His journey with y’all!

Patricia Simmons about 1 year ago

The Word of God from Genesis to Revelation points to Jesus. Fully God, fully man…promised, delivered and coming again. God in the flesh came to dwell with man so that through Him we are made right before a Holy and Righteous God. The incarnation of Christ is the pivotal event that changed everything. Men may argue who He is or even His very significance, but this is only the lunacy of man. Jesus is who He says He is or He is a fraud. There is no debating anything in between. I’m going all in on who He says He is because like you, JP a radically change life is the best example of His work amongst us. We miss you terribly here at Watermark but know God is using you in Waco. May The Lord bless and keep you as you spread The Good News of our Savior!

Tyler Cupit about 1 year ago

JP I miss you and you did a great job at the porch and being a campus pastor for watermark. I sure enjoyed your devo talked about Jesus did die for our sins and he is a friend of enemy’s and he also said,”love your enemies.” I will do all I can to love on people just like Jesus does.

Lindsey Driscoll about 1 year ago

JP great to read your words on this passage in Colossians today! Praying for you and the body at Harris Creek! I love how Paul clears up who Christ is for the people in Colosse. A “let me set the record straight” description of Christ. Verses 19-20 note that God was pleased to reconcile himself to man through Christ’s blood shed on the cross. As a new mom, looking at my son day after day it’s hard to fathom The fullness of Gods love that he would sacrifices his only son for us, to restore peace with mankind.

Sue Bohlin about 1 year ago

Well OF COURSE your devo would be one of my favorites of the whole year! As usual, Nailed. It.

I love that this passage was chosen for an Advent reading. The juxtaposition of the crazy HUGEness of God-in-the-flesh with the image of Baby Jesus asleep in the hay is mindblowing. Especially your key verse. The shepherds, looking down at the Baby in the manger, couldn’t possibly have begun to scratch the surface of what it meant to gaze on the fullness of God dwelling in that little one with the pleasure of the Father smiling down on Him.

Sort of like us in our earthbound puniness trying to wrap our minds around Jesus. There is SO much to learn and grow to appreciate in the years and eternity ahead of us!

Still praying for you, dear JP.

Love, Pearl

Bobby Crotty about 1 year ago

JP, awesome devo! Grateful for the way you pointed many to a relationship with Jesus at Watermark and now are continuing to do that in Waco at Harris Creek. Thankful for ALL the fun we had together at Watermark.

Miss you, pal. BC

Hugh Stephenson about 1 year ago

GM J.P.! Thank you for being His hands and feet.

I link your Central Truth to my key Bible verse, Matthew 16:15. When I engage others about the faith I ask them to tell me who they says Jesus is. Sometimes just using the word “is” rather than “was” is enough for a really good convo.

These two verses grab me -

“…the first born of all creation…”

“…the first born of the dead…”

Constable notes that “firstborn” could mean "…priority in time or supremacy in rank…or both”.

In Advent we are focusing on His birth as a human. He got tired, cold, hungry and had every hassle or inconvenience I do. But He never used His divinity to ease hardship or pain. The comparison with His divinity, supremacy and preeminence is stark.

This passage makes the unbreachable chasm in the Bridge diagram even more so.

Michael Scaman about 1 year ago

Some things that jumped out to me

Creation was made FOR Jesus. “…all things were created through him and FOR him…” The world was made by Jesus and for Jesus.

Jesus is ‘firstborn’ of creation. Firstborn means several things, first, heir first in rank. in"… firstborn over all creation…" but, second, also means “…firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent…” Jesus was the first to be raised with an indestructible eternal body which was fit to worship God through eternity and the church baptized into his death (Romans 6:3-5 says) into Christ to follow.

And “…God was pleased…” to reconcile the world to Himself in it all.

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