Prepare to Listen. As you light the 1st and 2nd purple candles, let these words still your heart and mind: In him was life, and the life was the light of all people.
Prayerfully Read Colossians 1:15-20
15[Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 16for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him and for him. 17He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything. 19For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.
Paul retells the story of creation with the image of a cosmic Christ. Everything was created through him and for him. His language agrees with what we’ve been reading thus far. Christ’s role in creation is expansive, inclusive of all creation, not merely humans. Paul takes us beyond the creation lessons of Genesis 1 and John 1. In Christ, writes Paul, “all things in heaven and on earth were created… in him all things hold together.” The phrase, all things, becomes a repetitive drum beat, used five times in these few verses.
The story doesn’t stop with creation. Without missing a beat, Paul writes about redemption. Through Christ’s cross all things, on earth and in heaven, are reconciled to God, restored into full relationship with the Creator. As N. T. Wright states, the story is retold “in terms of Jesus himself, focusing on the cross as the act whereby the good creation is brought back into harmony with the wise creator.”
Once again, we have a picture of God that is all-inclusive, not limited to a few humans. God is restoring all things to their original goodness, back to perfect harmony with God in Christ. As we move towards a celebration of Christ’s Advent on Christmas Day, this cosmic image ought to create awe and wonder, which are the foundation of true worship. Through him and for him. This is the Christ we celebrate and worship today and especially on Christmas Day.
What words or phrases caught your attention? Live with them today.
Respond to Jesus
Jesus, you are the image of the invisible God. We can only know and experience God in you and through you. In you we can see God in all things. Open my eyes today to this cosmic vision of you. Amen.
Live obediently. Be awed at Christ’s work to reconcile all to God.
 Surprised by Hope. HarperOne. 2008, p. 97.