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A Fond and Friend-Filled Farewell, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Cross Radio
April 11, 2022 7:05 am

A Fond and Friend-Filled Farewell, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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Today on Insight for living from Chuck Swindoll.

Think of the importance of friendship. I think of companionship. I think the remodel model are shared with you on a number of occasions sure Joy is a double joy shared sorrow is the secret is in the sharing the value of a friend is a person sharing the joy and sorrow chosen a great because Chuck Swindoll was beginning the final message in his brand-new study in Colossians and as we arrive in the final verses of Paul's letter written to his friends while in prison, we discover several verses that are dripping with sentimental affection and today on Insight for living Chuck helps us understand the context of Paul's personal remarks and what they teach us about relationships today. Chuck titled the spinal message in the teaching series of bond and friend field farewell word of God is alive and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the dividing soul and spirit, joints and the marrow, and it is a discerner is a critic of the thoughts and the intentions of the heart. There is no book like the book of God, nor the book to read your intention can penetrate to your soul to your spirit nor the book remains alive, regardless of where you may turn in its pages is relevant is in touch is penetrating Israel. We are learning in our study of the Scriptures are valuable. These pages. These writings these truths can be in the subjects are so very, for example. Who would've thought that as we in the study in Colossians. The subject would be friendships would be friends, but in 12 verses as Paul wraps up his thoughts and the end of chapter 410 people are named, some of whom you will never read anywhere else in the Bible, but each one is a friend of the apostle Paul and played a significant role in his life just as you and I could name to this group here, our friends, and most others would not know most of them. If any of them. So it was with the apostle and God's word tells us about these friends who were going to meet today and we realize as we hear about them. The same could be said of some of our friends and hopefully would be said of them.

I call this a fondant and friend filled farewell. You'll see why we made that as we read the passage for you.

Turn, if you haven't already, to Colossians chapter 4 in the word that is alive and active in sharp and let us hear it read together beginning in verse seven of Colossians 4 to the end of the letter to Cust will give you a full report about how I'm getting along. He is a beloved brother and faithful helper who serves with me in the Lord's work. I have sent him to you for this very purpose to let you know how we are doing and to encourage I'm also sending an SMS a faithful and beloved brother one of your own people key and ticket costs will tell you everything that's happening here. Aristarchus who is in prison with me sends you his greetings and so does Mark. Barnabas's cousin as you are instructed before make Mark welcome.

If he comes your way. Jesus, the one we call justice also sends his greetings.

These are the only Jewish believers along my coworkers. They are working with me here, for the kingdom of God and what a comfort. They have been oppressed, a member of your own fellowship and a servant of Christ Jesus sends you his greetings. He always prays earnestly for you, asking God to make you strong and perfect fully confident that you are following the whole will of God. I can assure you that he prays hard for you and also for the believers in Laodicea and horribleness Luke, the beloved doctor since his greetings and so does Dimas. Please give my greetings to our brothers and sisters at Laodicea enter in them fought in the church that meets in her house after you have read this letter, pass it on to the church at Laodicea so they can read it to you should read the letter I wrote to them, and Cesar Campos. Be sure to carry out the ministry, the Lord gave you. Here is my greeting in my own handwriting. Paul remember my chains. May God's grace be with you. I have a friend who after reading through this passage of Scripture said he could divide the group of people up into those friends who stayed in the one who prayed and another who strayed on you to think for a few moments about your circle of friends how I pity you. If you haven't circle of them. You may not even know now how much you need them. But one day you will realize and you will miss if you have not cultivated them. Some will be very significant deep intimate friends there will only be a few.

A number of those friends will be people you know fairly well you know something of their lives and they have yours.

A larger circle would be acquaintances how important it is that we realize the value when we are at death's door. We will all know we will all know how important friend to download his searching the Scriptures. Studies by going to Insight and now the message from Chuck called, of bond and friend filled farewell word pictures are wonderful.

They move us from our presence setting to another scene entirely and in our imagination. We can picture them as they unfold and they take on dimensions that we would otherwise miss.

Recall Sandberg was writing his four volume work on Lincoln the war years. He came to the 75th chapter in the fourth volume and search for a title for the chapter happened to be the chapter that cover the events related to those hours and days that followed the assassination of our 16th president is a tumultuous time as all of you are aware, Lincoln was criticized in them in a maddening way during his presidency as people saw him in this way and that way and only a few really emerged as close friends but when he died when he died.

It was remarkable what happened around the world through the wire came messages and through the lips of friends and those who had held back, came words that all described with a man he had been and how great his character Sandberg realizing all of this chose. Interestingly, a word picture from a woodsman's proverb familiar to those in that day and you title that 75th chapter.

A tree is best measured when it's down the word picture is obvious you cannot measure a tree at its full height, not really. It has to fall and then you're able to measure written study and see it up close as those in that day realize and did after the death of Abraham Lincoln. When I read those words again, I was reminded of the line from Samuel Taylor Coleridge's great work. Though not known by many title youth and age, it is the polling not care this body for winter weather. When youth and I lived in it together and then a little later on he inserts a word picture somewhat similar to the Sandberg quote friendship is a sheltering tree same word picture different. Think about a large stately tree a massive oak staying in the trunk. She owes you shelter you from the wind blows in the harsh blizzard of winter, and then the leaves that appear on the branches that reach out. The tree becomes a sheltering thing shelter shoe from the blistering raisin summer sun friendship is like that.

It's a sheltering tree. My heart goes out to any of you who haven't friends I made a circle of friends that meet many needs in the realms of your life that a family member can't meet someone who gets to know you because you allow that and you in turn get to know them. They know your weaknesses.

They know your struggles. They understand the times when you Put thoughts into words and other times when you say more than you should and you don't want anyone else to hear them, but a friend hears all of that is like a piece written by Dina Creek all the comfort of the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all right out just as they are traffic green together, certain that a faithful hand will take them and sift them, keeping what is worth keeping and with the breath of kindness blow the rest away. Friends do that but I think of the importance of friendship.

I think of companionship I think of comfort member model model. I've shared with you on a number of occasions sure joy is a double joy shared sorrow is half sorrow. The secret is in the sharing the value of a friend is a person with whom you can share it with joy and sorrow, and then there is along with that comfort that comes when we have reached the end of our rope. I was waiting for my car to be serviced. This past weekend and while sitting in a little waiting room, I noticed there was a Wall Street Journal lying there on the table in front of me and I just reached over and pulled up one of the sections in the lead article of that section was written by a man who tells the story true story of the dying years of his father. His father was suffering from Alzheimer's and little by little the shades were drawing day by day. The distance was increasing.

Between this man and his daddy, and he drops a line in the article.

I wish I would've written it, but I failed to do so, where he describes the importance of a friend. He says there were friends who came not even know my father had and what a comfort. They were what I hope companion. They became to my day who finally died. I thought about that.

I thought about men who are notorious for not cultivating friends Ella Lloyd McGinnis in fine book title the friendship factor rights in this I discovered that friendship is the springboard to every other love people without friends usually have a diminished capacity for sustaining a succession for sustaining any kind of love they tend to go through a succession of marriages, they tend to be estranged from various family members.

They have trouble getting along well with people that were then he heads some of America's leading psychologists and therapists were asked how many men have real friend. The bleak replies were not nearly enough, and too few most guest at 10%, 10% of the men who had been a part of their practice had friends, then he adds few males have been allowed the luxury of openness and vulnerability in a relationship they're not aware of the gaping void in their emotional life. Think of it.

If McGinnis is right 90% of us men have not cultivated friends. Paul would've been in the 10% is a matter of fact the friends in Paul's life, or sort of saved up to the end of his letters when you get to the end of Romans. There were 30 or more names mentioned most of whom you don't know we not read about their well known to the apostles this little letter of Colossians is written of the majesty of Christ, and he is are all in all in the and the significance of our Savior, and the importance of his presence as we work our way through life and then he gets to the end and he gets very personal, almost nostalgic as he names 10 individuals men and women in these 12 versus and again we we look at them and we blink and we think where had they been.

It's as if you are were to tell everyone in this listening audience are our friends, most of them I think for some none of them would be known by others, but the known by us and they play an invaluable role as our sheltering tree and when our tree is down, and then measure us.

It will be interesting to know the importance of friendships as we lived our lives. I can tell you without hesitation that some of the people I would name would be the reason I stand where I stand today and I have the ministry that I been granted today. Those men poured themselves into my life.

They believed in the long before I had any reason to believe in myself. They understood me they realize strengths and weaknesses in the cultivated one in the warned me about others the contribution they have made would be like to kick us anesthetists and Aristarchus of market justice in upper Freston Lucan Dimas and then by an octopus in Paul's life. Now you see why that significant work our way through these verses must, divide these names so that we have them in categories the outline I gave you provides a place for you to note that I put them in three groups two and then six and then the last two would make up the team. First there are the two friends who carry this letter to the church at Colossae there mentioned in verses 789 they were the ones because there was no Postal Service in the first century. They took the document they made sure it was safe they put it in the pouch. They carried with them literally from Rome over to the little we would call little to the town of Colossae there name for its verses 789 when you go to verse 10. The category changes to those six who remained with Paul in Rome there there to comfort and to be his companion.

The more you learn of them as we will. Today, though each biography will be painfully brief. The more you learn, the more you realize why they meant something to the apostle because remember he's trained to a Roman soldier he's under house arrest.

He hasn't the freedom to take an evening walk through the streets of Rome or to enjoy the beauty of the change of the seasons, he is in a house and and he is literally bound to a soldier who had the duty to guard this prisoner while he is awaiting trial. These six mentioned in verses 10 through 14 are the ones who stayed right there with him. One was even the fellow captives will be the minimal.

The last to know for an octopus were to live in Colossae whom the apostle and others with him. Great they will be the recipients of the letter that is sent to them and carried to them by to kick us in the Nessus the letter that Paul is written in Colossians at the end of it all is very touching moment very intimate moment for Paul personally takes the stylus in hand, and though manacled signs his name with his own signature. If we were able to have a copy of the original Greek document on which Paul wrote this letter .8, Greek, we would see that the penmanship changes at verse what we call verse 18 the end of the letter. It is Paul's own hand that he writes with his own penmanship and then adds a couple of thoughts that are so meaningful for him and the people in Colossae now with that as a background. Let's meet these 10 people. First, the two who carried the letter to kick us will give you a full report about how I'm getting along so who is to kick us. You will see three things about him. As you read on.

First, he is a beloved brother. So he's a much loved and admired friend in the faith.

Second, he is faithful see the word.

He is a beloved brother and faithful so he is consistent and loyal and trustworthy and reliable in his ministry.

That's why he would be trustworthy to take the letter from Paul in Rome and to get it all the way into Asia, where Colossae is located in the third. We notice in the same verse he is a helper who serves with me in the Lord's work is the he is a fellow servant literally a fellow dude lost sleep. We are both slaves of Christ, he is a fellow slave. Now get your will to appear because some of you are serious about Bible study. Others of you are not in your already bored but that's okay I understand.

I spent years in my life board before I realized how stupid I was to be board with the Scriptures were being taught. No offense, but for you who are on the edge of your seat loving this. You need to have in your possession a concordant concordance member. The word is a volume that includes alphabetically all of the names of people that appear in the Scriptures, and all of the words that appear so that you can see when you look up the name to kick us every time his name is mentioned in the Scriptures. I have a concordance that is about.threadbare so I have another concordance it's getting there and I just got a new concordance, a concordance is invaluable if you want to do serious study of the Scriptures. You're listening to Insight for living. To learn more about Chuck Swindoll in this ministry. Visit us well looking up a word that's included in the Bible is easy to do online, but many of us enjoy owning a tangible book that helps the search for words in the Bible as Chuck Swindoll just mentioned it's called a concordance. If you want to add a physical copy of the study tool to your collection. You be pleased to know that inside for living offers an exhaustive concordance of the new American Standard Bible version through our online store to grab yours.

Give us a call if you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888. In addition, Chuck is written the complete commentary on Colossians and this is one of the last times will mention this resource because Chuck's teaching series will conclude on Wednesday of this week. Chuck's living insides commentary on Colossians can be purchased right now when you go to will many of us have shed a few tears over the travesty in Ukraine as innocent people including our brothers and sisters in Christ to been brutally attacked. So let's continue to pray for all citizens of this region who feel oppressed and in physical danger will be encouraged to hear that the ministry up inside for living touches people who live in this part for the Bible teaching you've come to enjoy on this program to the devoted staff that live in that region of the world and through the additional resources we provide. We count it a privilege to serve Eastern Europeans as part of vision 195 Chuck's Bible teaching is translated into eight different languages including Polish and Romanian, and these ministries are made possible when you get a much needed donation to Insight for living to give a gift today. Call us if you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888 or give to give a donation today.

Visit us you to join us again next time when Chuck Swindoll continues to describe Paul's bond farewell to the Colossians on insight relive the preceding message of fun and friend filled farewell was copyrighted in 2014 and 2022 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2022 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. all rights are reserved worldwide.

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