Please explain Colossians 2:16-17.

Paul is dealing with some basic principles arising from false teachings. For a better understanding of these two verses it is necessary to include verses 18-20 as well. Someone is telling stories! Someone is trying to rise above averyone else because of his/her so-called visions or revelations.

This refers to a person puffed up by his human way of thinking, says Paul, and not holding on to Christ. This person wanted to set the rules for everyone, but this cannot be done in the fellowship of free Christians. No one should make (new) rules about what to eat or to drink or about the holy days. The holy days, Paul says, pointed to what was to come: Easter and Pentecost have already found fulfilment in the death and resurrection of Christ and in the bestowing of the Holy Spirit on the members of the body of Christ.

The weekly Sabbath was glorified as the day of redemption and re-creation by the resting Saviour in the tomb. There is ample reason therefore to celebrate and to keep holy days that have received a new meaning by the redemptive work of Christ! Allow no one to condemn you, says Paul.

You are a free person in Christ. Shadows, however, should never be mistaken for the real thing.



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