Daily Devotions


Day 55

"A shadow of things to come..."

Text: Colossians 2:17


The Lord Himself gave to the children of Israel their religious observances. He was the One who taught the people to keep the following:-

1. Dietary laws

2. Keeping of the religious feasts

3. Keeping of the Sabbath

These laws were carefully written in the Books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy in particular. The children of Israel were commanded to keep these religious traditions.


With the passage of time, the children of Israel lost the meaning of these religious traditions. They became empty rituals that they kept without fully comprehending what they did. Prophets of old were raised up to address these problems. One such prophet was Isaiah who told the people that the keeping of traditional practices was not accepted by the Lord (Isaiah 1:11-15). God desired His people to have good and clean lives! He rejected mere ritualism performed in the name of religion!


Paul sought to help the Colossians to comprehend an important truth!

“Which are a shadow of things to come,
but the substance is of Christ.”
Colossians 2:17

1. “Which are a shadow of things to come”

a) The religious practices were not without value.
b) They may be understood as “skia” ( in Greek).
i) This word describes “a foreshadowing”.
ii) Or an “outline”.
iii) They pointed to “the things to come”.

2. “But the substance is of Christ.”

a) The word substance is most interesting.
b) It is the word that may be translated simply as “body” (The body of “Christ”).
c) Christ is the substance- the Body (that is, the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ).

3. When Christ came

a) That which foreshadows must give way to the substance.
b) That which is only symbolic be superseded by the reality that is in Christ.
c) Our spiritual reality is to be found in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.