16a Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.
What is “the word of Christ”? It refers to the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. Christ is their Author and their subject matter. The Scriptures testify of Him. Jesus said, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39).
So, when we listen to the words of the Bible, we are listening to Christ Himself. It should surprise no one that Christ has such titles as “the Word” (John 1:1, 14; 1 John 1:1-2; 5:7; Revelation 19:13), “the wisdom of God” (1 Corinthians 1:24, 30; Colossians 2:3), and “the truth” (John 14:6). He was “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14); in fact, “grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17)!
We honour Christ by honouring the Scriptures which testify of Him and His will. So Paul exhorts us, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you”. His Word must not be like a guest, a visitor, an acquaintance or a stranger with whom we cherish no special, devout and abiding relationship. His Word must not be like a friend whom we seldom meet up with, but rather, His Word should be as a resident member of our family with whom we are in constant and loving communication.
Let the Word of God dwell in you. To be sure, it is not enough for God’s Word to be on your study-tables, in your bags, in your hands or in your digital communication devices. Rather, you must yield yourselves as sacred “dwellings” to be occupied by His Word. It should be allowed to control and direct your lives at all times.
We are exhorted not only to let the Word of Christ dwell in us, but also to let it dwell richly in all wisdom. It must be allowed to teach, rebuke, correct, instruct, comfort and guide us, so much so that all its wisdom may be seen pre-eminently in all aspects of our lives.
Simply put, no other “occupant” is allowed to remain in us unless it is in full agreement with this chief dweller. Any other human thought, idea, ambition or craving that is contrary to the Word of Christ must be expelled at once. All our thoughts are to be vetted and approved by its wisdom. All our ambitions must be made hallowed by its wisdom. The wisdom of Christ’s Word must guide us all day long, and all the days of our earthly life. Christ’s Word must fully occupy us always. Let its glorious wisdom illumine us within, so that its splendour might shine through us.