Rescued and Transferred


Look this morning at Colossians 1:13-14 and consider these thoughts. What Paul does here is continue to show how incomparable Christ is and what He has done for believers. Ultimately Paul is putting forth the truth that believers are complete in Christ, which was an issue that the Gnostic opponents of Paul opposed.

To begin making Paul's point that Christ's work is totally sufficient and that believers were complete in that work, Paul offers us these truths here in verses 13-14 to consider:

Believers have been RESCUED from the domain of darkness and TRANSFERRED to the kingdom of Christ. This is what salvation does, redemption and the forgiveness of our sins. We literally now exist in a new realm, new family, new country with new citizenship. Total new existence. All through faith in Christ's completed work. 

The word “transferred” here in the day Paul wrote this pointed to the action of a king who would transplant a people group into another country or region. That is the picture Paul uses here. Christ now our king. We exist in a new realm and under a new rule. Huge truths here.

Do we see ourselves in this way? Do we see ourselves as being "OTHER WORLDLY"? This would certainly harken any Jew's mind back to the Exodus story in Ex. 6:6-8 where we find almost the exact language.

Delivered, rescued, redeemed, transferred to a new existence and realm. Christ is our exodus. All thru faith in the gospel. Do you see why we never wander from the gospel? And just like Israel, we have been delivered not to serve self and live for self, but to serve God by giving our lives to Him and His glory. Look at Ex. 8:1; 9:1. Compare that with 1 Peter 2:9-10. Why did God rescue them? That we would serve Him. Worship. That we would proclaim His excellencies.

Everything makes sense when we grasp the gospel, when we understand and appropriate the gospel to our lives thru the power God works in us thru the gospel and understanding it. And letting everything flow from this understanding.

Our life and identity flow from a right understanding of the gospel. You and I are not supreme and the focus, not even in salvation. We are a part of a salvation that is so much bigger than us. We must step back and realize that we are a part of a wider redemptive plan that is centered on God’s glory and not our own.

See this in Ex. 15:11-13; Is. 45:22-23. This is where Paul is drawing truth from. Paul is reminding believers here of the centrality of the glory of God. We cannot let individual deliverance replace God as the center of our concerns. We were ransomed to serve the one that ransomed us. Delivered to serve the deliverer. Transferred to serve the king over the new territory in which we reside. Rescued to serve the rescuer. We exist for the glory of God, our king. Our living of lives that are worthy of and reflect this redemption and rescue is in itself an act of worship and submission in response to God’s acts on our behalf to His glory. Our submission is grounded in our having been delivered and rescued.

The gospel is the basis for everything. Understanding the gospel makes everything make sense.

Rest secure in the gospel. Find your identity in the gospel and who we are in Christ. That’s verses 13-14. Don’t be persuaded by another message. Christ is enough, sufficient, unrivaled. We have been delivered. Done. Secure. It is what Paul says in 2 Thess. 2:13-15, where he commands believers to hold fast to this confession and the truths we have been taught surrounding it.

May this be us even under these circumstances. Rest assured in the certainty of the gospel no matter what we face. Source our identity in the gospel no matter what happens. All to the glory of the one who saved us and protects and keeps us.


The gospel is the basis for everything. Understanding the gospel makes everything make sense.