Union and Unity
The interesting expression “knit together” occurs twice in the Epistle to the Colossians, and these occurences picture two separate pictures of God’s people; the first, the phalanx as formed by the ancient Macedonian army; the second, the human body.
It is not difficult to envisage these, and this we shall do, but in an inverted order, the body first and then the phalanx.
The body suggests an organic union, the phalanx an operative unity. The body suggests a union in Christ; the phalanx, a unity for Christ. The body emphasizes the union of life in Christ; the phalanx, the unity of love through Christ.
The Spirit of God uses the picture of the body correctively to rectify what was wrong at Colosse, and He uses the picture of the phalanx defensively to protect the saints from further danger.
At Colosse there were those who were not holding Christ as Head of the Church. These were attempting to beguile God’s people; therefore, Paul shows the importance of acknowledging the Headship of Christ. As the head is necessary to the body, even so is Christ to the Church.
Paul mentions Christ as Head, and then mentions the Body in all its parts knit together. He explains that sustenance flows from Christ the Head into all parts of the Body, the Church, through all the joints and unions of the many several parts. Finally, he states that it is in this way that the Body grows.
The head is the centre of the entire nerve system of the human body. Through the sensory nerves the head knows exactly what is going on in any part of the body; through the motory nerve system it directs the movements of any member. In like manner, the Church is dependent upon Christ her Head for comfort, blessing, growth, and guidance.