“Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving” (Colossians 2:6,7).
PAUL’S COUNSEL TO THE COLOSSIANS IS ONE THAT APPLIES TO ALL OF US WHO HAVE OBEYED THE GOSPEL. He said, “As you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him.” Having accepted Christ, we need to live like persons who have actually done that.
We often hear people talk about having “accepted Jesus as their Lord” when a quick look at their lives makes us wonder if they even know the definition of the word lord. Jesus said, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you?” (Luke 6:46). Jesus Christ is not truly our Lord if it is not His will that governs us.
In Colossians 2:7, Paul used the analogy of a plant. Those who have received Christ must be “rooted and built up in him and established in the faith.” This echoes Jesus’ teaching about the kinds of soil into which the seed of God’s word is sown. The seed must not only germinate; it must send down roots deep enough that the plant grows to maturity and produces fruit (Matthew 13:1-9,18-23). So we must not only accept Christ initially; we must accept Him for the rest of our lives — in our hearts and our deeds.
But let’s make it personal. What would your next step be if you wished to accept Christ? If you still stand outside of God’s forgiveness, not having obeyed even the initial terms of the gospel, you need to turn your heart toward God in godly sorrow and come before Him with the humble question, “What must I do?” And the answer of the gospel will be that you need to confess that you believe Jesus is the Christ (Romans 10:9,10), repent of your sins (Luke 13:3), and be baptized into Christ’s death (Romans 6:3,4), trusting in God’s promise to wash away your sins (Acts 22:16).
But if you have done these things in the past, what now? If you honestly have to admit that you haven’t kept the commitment you made to Christ, then you need to repent of that and come back to Him with a deeper love (Revelation 2:4,5). Your “acceptance” of Christ needs to be more “accepting.” And frankly, who among us (even those who have been Christians the longest) can say we don’t need to open the doors of our heart more widely to Jesus Christ?
“We get no deeper into Christ than we allow him to get into us” (John Henry Jowett).