he is the priority
Colossians 1:15-23 (JDV)
Colossians 1:15 He is the image of the unseen God, the firstborn over all creation.
Colossians 1:16 You see, everything was created by him, in the sky and on the land,  what can be seen and what cannot be seen, whether thrones or dominions or priorities  or authorities – all things have been created through him and for him.
Colossians 1:17 He is before all things, and by him all things hold together.
Colossians 1:18 He is also the head of the body, the congregation;  he is the priority, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything.
Colossians 1:19 You see, God was delighted to have all his fullness dwell in him,
Colossians 1:20 and through him to reconcile everything to himself, whether things on the land or things in the sky, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
Colossians 1:21 Once you were alienated and hostile in your minds expressed in your evil achievements.
Colossians 1:22 But now he has reconciled you by his physical body through his death, to present you devoted, faultless, and blameless before him –
Colossians 1:23 if indeed you remain grounded and steadfast in the faith and are not shifted away from the hope of the gospel that you heard. This gospel has been proclaimed in all creation under the sky, and I, Paul, have become an assistant of it.
he is the priority
All of life is a juggling of things that we deem important, or even urgent. We choose our friends and associations based on the things that we feel are important, and we choose who to listen to, and who to ignore based on those personal choices. The lesson of the New Testament is that Jesus himself is the priority. It was that lesson that Paul was reminding the Colossians about.
Even churches can get sidetracked here – which is why Paul had to bring this up to the Colossians.
Lord, ground us in yourself as our first priority. May we focus on keeping your covenant, following your commands, and obeying your great commission.
1 γῆ = land. Colossians 1:16, 20; 3:2, 5.
2 ἀρχή = priority. Colossians 1:16, 18; 2:10, 15.
3 ἐκκλησία = congregation. Colossians 1:18, 24; 4:15-16.