First Sunday after Christmas


 Sermon Text:  Colossians 3:12-17

 Other Readings: Isaiah 45:20-25 and Luke 2:25-40


  1. Colossians is an “epistle” (or a letter written to a Christians). Epistles often deal with two key teachings—justification and sanctification. Justification refers to how God declares us “not guilty” because of Jesus Christ. Sanctification refers to how we live new and holy lives in light of the gospel. Do you think this text is primarily justification or sanctification? Which phrases or words back up your choice?
  2. What three key gospel truths motivate our new lives in Christ? (See 3:12.)
  3. Where is the only place to find strength for our new life in Christ? (See 3:16.)
  4. In what ways did Simeon and Anna from our Gospel reading (Luke 2:25-40) wear the kind of Christian “clothing” which Paul describes here in Colossians?

  1. This text is definitely talking about sanctification. Since God has made us holy (3:12), this is how we now live our new and holy lives out of thankfulness for what Jesus has done.
  2. a) In Christ, we are God’s chosen people. In eternity, in pure grace, the Father picked us to be his own. b) In Christ, we are holy in God’s sight. Jesus’ holiness is credited to us as if we have had only holy thoughts and actions all our lives. c) In Christ, we are dearly loved.
  3. The only place to find strength for our new life in Christ is in God’s Word. (Let’s dig into it daily to teach and warn each other! Let’s sing it gladly!)
  4. Simeon was patient (Colossians 3:12) as he waited “for the consolation of Israel” (v. 25). Simeon also “let the message of Christ dwell [in him] richly” (Colossians 3:16) because he searched for prophecies about Christ in the Old Testament and believed what they had to say

    As for Anna – She was “thankful” (Colossians 3:15) when she saw and recognized Jesus as the Savior. She then taught others about this child, as Paul encourages us to do in Colossians 3:16.