"At one time when you had no knowledge of God, you were under the authority of gods who had no real existence. But now that you have come to know God, or rather are known by him, how can you revert to dead and sterile principles and consent to be under their power all over again? Your religion is beginning to be a matter of observing certain days or months or seasons or years. Frankly, you stagger me, you make me wonder if all my efforts over you have been wasted!"
Consider the underlying statements in this paragraph: 1) “gods who had no real existence” – Can you picture people who’ve made their own god out of their own labor and now bow down to worship it in all its false glory? “Oh, thou chair that I hast crafted and hewn with my own hands, certainly you are the god of all the planets!”
2) “you have come to know God, or rather are known by him” – Imagine that! The actual God of the universe who actually crafted the entirety of Creation! The One who saw our fallen sinful selves and wouldn’t accept our separation and, so, sent His Son to redeem us by His blood! The One who became flesh and then walked out a perfect life, giving us a glimpse of the immensity of the Godhead in human form! The One who took the penalty of our sin – tried, mocked, flogged, condemned, murdered – so that we might taste life eternal! The One who strode out of the tomb to show the power of the unquenchable Life and ascended to take His king-priestly place at the right hand of the Father! Yes, that One “knows” us!
3) “Your religion” is becoming a matter of “seasons or years” – If you and I become “Sunday-only people,” observing one day as our “season” for worship, we’re taking the enormity of our God and treating Him as befits mute idols. Essentially, we’re sitting down in the false-god Chair’s lap; we just happen to call it a pew!
You see, the greatest glory in all human history is the Eternal God conforming Himself into the form of a man to save us from our sin. But the greatest human tragedy is when we try to conform that overwhelming glory to the whims of our lifestyle. May it never be so for us, brothers and sisters!