And you are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
"Complete" is carried on from ver. 9. "The fulness of the Godhead," "and ye are full (same word) in Him."
I. FULNESS IN CHRIST. If you had heard Christ speak you would have said nothing can be taken away or added to those words without diminishing their force or beauty. If you had seen Christ act you would have felt that His action came up to the fulness of which that action was capable. His heart was nothing but love; and His work, although confined to a few years, fulfilled the infinite counsel of the Trinity. The Father looked down and saw no flaw and was satisfied.
II. THIS FULNESS WAS TO BE THE ONE TREASURE-HOUSE OF THE CHURCH FOR EVER (John 1:16; Ephesians 4:7). And every believer being separately endowed, the whole Church is made His body, "the fulness of Him that filleth all in all." So we are filled, complete; and the Church is the complement of Jesus.
III. THE PROCESS BY WHICH THE COMPLETENESS IS EFFECTED IS UNION WITH CHRIST.
1. The union is a simple, positive fact once for all. The Holy Spirit enters a man's mind and unites his thoughts, feelings, desires, etc., with those of Christ, and that Spirit in both is union.
2. If there be union the completeness will follow, just as a vessel must fill itself from the fountain with which it is connected.
IV. WE NATURALLY YEARN AND STRIVE FOR COMPLETENESS, BUT FAIL EVERYWHERE.
1. No man ever yet came up to the point of which he knew his powers were capable.
2. None of those sources of gratification with which God has furnished us ever gave entire satisfaction.
3. There is not a man who has not his weak points; but above all men the Christian feels his incompleteness. The better he prays the more he feels his prayer deficient. The higher his attainments the farther off he seems from what he wants. And no Christian friend, no Church, no ordinance, no grace, is all he once expected they would be.
4. Life is one vast incompleteness.
V. WE ARE COMPLETE IN HIM.
1. From His cross our Lord said "It is finished." From the time of creation down to that hour those words could not have been spoken about any human undertaking. But He said it, and mark the consequence. You have to do with a salvation which is perfectly complete. If you think you are to do anything you detract from the completeness of Christ.
2. We have a twofold completeness.
(1) That which we draw from Christ. The whole disposal of God's gifts is delegated to Christ. In Him all things are treasured up for our sakes. Hence He will supply
(a) our temporal needs. The Christian, therefore, must not be anxious about them.
(b) Strength and wisdom for every work we have to do. The Christian, then, must not despair about his weakness and ignorance.
(c) Grace for Christian growth and comfort. The Christian must not despond when deprived of outward means and help.
(2) That in which we stand in Christ. God sees all who believe in Christ, and accepts Christ for them. Hence everything we do in faith loses itself in some corresponding thing that Christ has done. Our prayer, e.g., mingles with Christ's intercession. What is wanting He supplies, what is redundant He deducts. His perfume gives it sweetness, and so it goes to the throne, how different from when it left us, "complete." He is "made unto us wisdom and righteousness," etc.
(J. Vaughan, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: