Colossians 1:16-17 tells us, “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities — all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” NASU.
Because most Bible translations give limited clarity to the above verse, I felt to insert Jonathan Mitchell’s excellent all encompassing translation.
“16. because within Him was created (or: in union with Him is founded and settled, is built and planted, is brought into being, is produced and established) the whole (or: all things) – the things within the atmospheres and skies (or: heavens), and the things upon the earth (or: land); the visible things, and the unseen (or: unable to be seen; invisible) things: whether thrones (seats of power) or lordships (ownership systems) or governments (rulers; leadership systems; sovereignties) or authorities – the whole (or: all things) has been created and continues founded and stands framed through means of Him, and [proceeds, or was placed] into Him (or: = He is the agent and goal of all creation).
17. And He is before (prior to; or: maintains precedence of) all things and all people, and the whole has (or: all things have) been placed together and now continues to jointly-stand (stands cohesively; is made to have a co-standing) within the midst of and in union with Him, “JM.
One of the most important, dare I say “profound” words in Paul’s writings, especially in Ephesians and Colossians, is the simple word IN which usually comes from the Greek word "EN," or variants of thereof. EW Bullinger’s gives it this meaning: "a being or remaining within, with the primary idea of rest in any place or thing." Did you catch that word REST? This is what it means to be IN CHRIST. He has finished the work. This means that we REST in the finished work of Jesus Christ. Yet, many feel that they have to still do something which brings disrespect to the grace of God..
Our Father God has placed all of us IN [within the midst of and in union with] CHRIST. We were there during the death, resurrection and ascension to our Father’s right hand. We now dwell in the heavenly realm. It is from this vantage point we can glimpse the vastness of his glory, his majesty and grace as his master plan for the ages unfolds. With great anticipation we await the day when, “IN [within] the name of Jesus every knee will bow [in worship], of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is LORD, to the glory of God the Father.”
Our understanding is limited, yet, the fact remains that God is working out his purposes in the earth. He is the Supreme One and HE HAS NO EQUAL, nor does he share power with the devil! We have been conditioned to accept the false notion, both within the church and secular world, that man has a totally “free will,” with freedom of choice as a “free moral agent.” Human free will is actually viewed as superior to God’s will. This error began with the serpent in the Garden of Eden. It makes man as least as powerful as God, which was Satan’s appeal, was it not? This of course does not take away responsibly for our actions as we are accountable for them. The fact remains, God has never surrendered his sovereignty, not for one second. His will is supreme, and all else will and must bow before it!
We must be clear on the fact that the will and the purpose of God are the determining factor in ALL things. God is the beginning, the ultimate source from which all things originate and exist, and find their in Him alone. (Romans 11:36).
May our heart’s cry be, “I delight to do thy will O Lord!” Even so, let it be done. Amen!