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Free Books » Bonar, Horatius » Light & Truth: The Lesser Epistles

Chapter 24 - Colossians 1:10 - A Christian Life Light & Truth: The Lesser Epistles by Bonar, Horatius




A Christian Life.


"That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God."

-Colossians 1:10.



     Such is the outline of a Christian life! It is like Enoch's, a 'walk;' not a motionless resting and retirement from our fellows, but a moving about in the midst of them; a coming into contact with our neighbors; a going to and fro upon the highways of earth. 'Walk,' says the apostle; not 'live' merely, but 'walk.' And this walk is not merely for your own benefit, but theirs. You will be seen on all sides, before and behind,-at all times; keep this in mind. There are many eyes to look on you,-many ears to hear you,-men and angels, the world and the Church. Walk well, walk wisely, truly, uprightly. But let us mark the kind of walk.

     I. Worthy of the Lord.-Let the servant be worthy of his Master, and the disciple of his Lord. (1.) Live as the Lord Jesus would have you live. (2.) Live as He lived. (3.) Live so as not to dishonour Him. (4.) Live so as to glorify Him. (5.) Live so as to reflect Him to others. We often hear it said, Don't bring discredit on your family and country; or, Be a credit and an honour to your family and country. How much more forcibly may this be said to the Christian, Don't dishonour Christ; nay, do everything to honour Him, and to lead others to honour Him,-especially in a world like ours, where He is everywhere either unnoticed or reproached. Be followers of the Lord; let men see whose you are; let no man mistake you!

     II. Unto all pleasing.-We are so to walk as to please God,-thoroughly and well. In order to this, our walk must be-(1.) A believing walk; for without faith it is impossible to please God. (2.) A decided walk. No compromise nor half heartedness; we must be Christians out and out; no divided heart, nor service of two masters. (3.) A consistent walk. Not in word or profession, but in deed; not one part of our life contradicting the other, but all in harmony; each contributing its separate testimony. (4.) A persevering walk. Not a running well at times, and then a halting or fainting; but a constant pressing forward. Only in these ways shall our walk be 'unto all pleasing.' Do you seek to please Him? Not merely to avoid displeasing; but is it your aim in all things to please God, and in pleasing Him, to cast a pleasant light upon all around? Please God!

     III. Fruitful.-Not a barren walk, a useless life, filled up with idle words and deeds; but a fruitful life. Universal fruitfulness is to be its characteristic. A barren walk is-(1.) A very inconsistent one; for we are expected to work for God. (2.) A very unhappy one; for conscience will always be pricking us, reminding us of our idleness. (3.) A very unprofitable one to ourselves. It is not merely that we are useless, doing no work for God or for the Church; but we get no reward: at the most we are saved, barely saved; but we win no crown. Our whole life turns to nothing, ends in a blank. It is wasted in all respects. Let us be fruitful-very fruitful; every branch, every twig on our tree laden with fruit; bringing forth our fruit every month,-nay, every day. Live a fruitful life. Be not useless disciples. Do not throw away time and thought and life. Use your being well. Live to some purpose. Do your work bravely and fully. Be not fearful or slothful. Ye are not your own; live like redeemed men; men with the blood upon them, and the Holy Spirit in them, and the crown before their eyes. Cultivate life; till your fields; water them every moment; aim at an abundant harvest.

     IV. In our walk we are to increase in the knowledge of God.-We know Him so little; and there is so much to be known. We begin with knowing Him-'acquaint thyself with God;' we go on to know Him-each day is to add to our stores. An increase of knowledge will help our walk; and our walk will help our knowledge. To this end we must study the word more; for how small a portion of it do we know! We have never gone beneath the surface, nor surveyed even the tenth part of that surface. We study other books much; this very little. We increase in the knowledge of other things, little in this. The proper study of mankind is not man, but God. 'This is life eternal, that they might know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent.' Learn the heavenly lessons daily. Make fresh discoveries everywhere. Sink new shafts in this mine of heavenly gold. Bring up new pearls from the depth of this vast ocean. Grow rich in the knowledge of God!