For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell;…
For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell. The apostle thus explains the headship alike of the Church and of the universe, for he says the indwelling of Deity was the ground of both.
I. THE NATURE OF THIS FULNESS.
1. It is not the mere manifestation of Godhead.
2. It is Godhead itself in the totality of its powers and attributes. It is "the complete fulness and exhaustless perfection of the Divine essence." It is elsewhere described: "In him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily" (Colossians 2:9) Christ is indeed "God manifest in the flesh" (1 Timothy 3:16). The Jedaeo-Gnostics taught that the fulness of the Godhead was distributed or dispensed among several spiritual agencies - "thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues, powers" - so as to introduce grades of angelic mediators between God and man. The apostle declares that the fulness of the Godhead rests, not in them, but in Christ as the Word of God. Thus he is no mere emanation from the Divine Being.
II. THERE IS A PERMANENTLY INDWELLING FULNESS IN HIM. "That in him all the fulness should have its permanent abode." This is the force of the original word, which is very suggestive in the light of later Gnostic heresies. The false teachers held that the fulness of the Godhead as dispersed among spiritual agencies was partial like a blurred image, and also temporary. The apostle teaches:
1. That the totality of Divine Towers abides in Christ.
2. That it abides in him permanently and remains for ever, not coming and going like a transient phenomenon. Therefore we have an inexhaustible supply for all the needs of the Church.
III. THE PRECIOUSNESS OF THIS INDWELLING FULNESS TO US.
1. It was of the Father's "good pleasure" that it should abide in his incarnate Son for the welfare of the Church.
2. We are to receive "of his fulness and grace for grace." (John 1:16.) We are to grow "unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ" (Ephesians 4:13). The standard is nothing short of the fulness of Christ.
3. The Church is his very fulness - "the fulness of him who filleth all in all," because his fulness is communicated to her (Ephesians 1:23).
IV. LESSONS TO BE DRAWS FROM THIS TRUTH.
1. Great is the mystery of godliness. (1 Timothy 3:16.)
2. Great is the comfort of the believer in virtue of this infinite fulness. There is fulness of wisdom to keep us from error, fulness of grace to subdue our sin, fulness of joy to keep us from despair, fulness of mercy and pity to succour us in our distresses. "Therefore let no man take thy crown" (Revelation 3:11); "Cast not away your confidence" (Hebrews 10:35).
3. Great is the security of the believer. It is a permanent fulness. - T. C.
Parallel VersesKJV: For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;