The portion of scripture which we are about to read, ought to be well understood and earnestly observed by us, for it pleads for the purity and simplicity of the Christian faith, and deals heavy blows at those various additions of men which, under various pretences, are tagged on to the simple gospel. We need to standfast to the plain, simple, gospel of Jesus; for to adorn it is to deface it, to add to it is to dishonour it.
Pretendedly wise men would improve the gospel: as well might they dream of adding lustre to the sun or fulness to the ocean.
What then can we need more? How can his gospel be improved?
We have all things in Jesus, and want no added rites: to all these we are dead and buried, our baptism teaches us; and by faith we are risen from all dead formalities into a new spiritual life, which requires none of the ordinances of man to sustain it. We ought to beware of those gaudy rites with which Ritualists now mar the gospel of Jesus.
Christ on the cross has vanquished sin and ended the ceremonial law; let us not return to the bondage from which his death has set us free.
From all human laws, as to holy days and fastings and ceremonies, we are free; they are vain shadows; Jesus is the true substance.
Colossians 2:18, 19
How plainly the angel-worship is here condemned! What have we to do with adoring angels when we are already members of a body which has a divine head?
Why bind yourselves with man’s commands when you are dead to them all in Christ? Jesus gives you liberty, why put upon your shoulders a new yoke?
The precepts of men as to regarding different days, and rejecting certain kinds of food, appear to be wise and to foster humility, but it is only so in mere appearance, and Christians, being under the law of liberty, should refuse to bring themselves into bondage. One is our Master, even Christ; it is enough for us to obey his will and abide in the liberty which he has so dearly purchased for us, and so graciously given to us.
In thy promises I trust,
In thy precious word confide,
I am prostrate in the dust,
I with Christ was crucified.
Jesus, lives—he fills my soul,
Perfected in him I am;
I am every whit made whole,
Glory, glory to the Lamb