The Book of Colossians

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Colossians Chapter 1

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Greeting from Paul and Timothy
  1. Paul, an apostle of Jesus the Anointed through the will of God, and Timothy our brother,
  2. to the saints and faithful brothers in the Anointed at Colossae; grace and peace to you from God our Father.
  3. We always give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus the Anointed while praying about you,
  4. since we’re hearing of your faith in Jesus the Anointed and the love that you have for all the saints
  5. because of the hope being stored for you in the heavens, which you previously heard in the word of truth; the gospel.
  6. The gospel which is present in you, just as it’s bearing fruit and growing in all the world, even as it was among you from the day you heard and recognized the grace of God in truth.
  7. Just as you learned from Epaphras – our beloved fellow servant – who is a faithful servant of the Anointed on our behalf,
  8. and the One who revealed your love(1)The Greek word here “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference.  In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”.  In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel.    It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings.  (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) to us in the Spirit.
  9. And because of this, we didn’t stop praying and asking for you from the day we heard, so you might be filled with accurate knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding,
  10. for you to walk worthy of the Lord; pleasing to Him in everything, in every good work; bearing fruit and growing in the accurate knowledge of God;
  11. being empowered with all strength according to His glorious might, into all endurance and patience with joy;
  12. giving thanks to the Father; the One who made you fit for a portion of the inheritance of the saints in light.
  13. He who rescued us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of His beloved Son,
  14. in whom we have the ransom payment which freed us(2)“ransom payment which freed us” is one word in Greek.  It specifically refers to “a release effected by payment of ransom”. and the forgiveness of sins.
Jesus’ Authority
  1. He who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over(3)“firstborn over” In Jewish culture, “firstborn” was as much a title as an indication of birth order.  This can be seen in 1 Chronicles 26:10, 1 Chronicles 5:1, Genesis 48:17-20, and God Himself declares someone who was not born first to be His firstborn (of Israel) in Jeremiah 31:9.  Thus, “firstborn” can – and did – sometimes indicate rank among brothers instead of the birth order.  While Jesus wasn’t “born first” because He is uncreated, (John 1:1), Christians are called His “brothers” and this Jesus could rightly be called “firstborn” in the sense or preeminence and authority. This is consistent with its 1st century usage and immediate context of the passage. all creation,
  2. because all things in the heavens and on the earth were created by Him, the visible and the invisible; whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities; all things were – and are – created through Him and for Him.
  3. And He is before all things and in Him all things did – and do – hold together.
  4. And He is the head of the body (the church) who is the beginning; the firstborn from the dead, so He might become the One having preeminence in all things,
  5. because it pleased God for all fullness to dwell in Him,
  6. and through Him to fully reconcile all things Himself – whether the things on the earth or the things in the heavens – making peace through Him, through the blood of His cross.
  7. And you were formerly alienating yourselves and being enemies in your mind and wicked works,
  8. but now He fully reconciled you by His body of flesh through death, to present you holy and unblemished and blameless in His sight,
  9. if indeed you remain in the faith; having been – and being – firmly established and steadfast, and not removing yourself from the hope of the gospel you heard, the gospel which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, of which I Paul became a minister.
The Mystery of the Gospel
  1. Now, I rejoice in my sufferings on your behalf, and I fill up in my flesh what lacks in afflictions of the Anointed for the sake of His body, which is the church.
  2. Of which I became a servant according to the stewardship from God, which was given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God;
  3. the mystery which was – and is – concealed from the ages and from the generations, but now was revealed to His saints.
  4. To whom God willed to make known what is the glorious richness of this mystery among the gentiles, which is the Anointed in you; the hope of glory.
  5. He who we proclaim; admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom so we might present every man perfect in the Anointed.
  6. And for this I exhaust myself working; striving according to His power, which works powerfully in me.

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Colossians Chapter 2

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Walk in the Lord
  1. For I want you to know how great a struggle I have on behalf of you, and the men in Laodicea, and as many as didn’t – and don’t – see my face in the flesh,
  2. so their hearts might be encouraged, having been knit together in love, even into all the wealth of the full assurance of understanding, to full knowledge of the mystery of God: the Anointed,
  3. in whom all the treasures of knowledge and wisdom are hidden.
  4. I say this so that no one uses false reasoning to mislead(4)“uses false reasoning to mislead” is one word in Greek, with that exact meaning. you by persuasive words.
  5. For even if I’m absent in the flesh, yet I’m with you in spirit; rejoicing and seeing your order(5)“order” This Greek word is a military terms which refers to soldiers in a disciplined and orderly military formation. and the steadfastness of your faith in the Anointed.
  6. Therefore, just as you’ve received the Anointed Lord Jesus, walk in Him:
  7. having been – and being – firmly rooted in Him, and being built up in Him, and being established in the faith just as you were taught, and overflowing in thanksgiving.
  8. Watch out, lest someone will carry you off like spoils of war through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men or according to the principles of the world and not according to the Anointed.
  9. Because all the fullness of Deity dwells bodily in Him,
  10. and in Him you were – and are – being completed.  He who is the head of every ruler and authority,
  11. in whom also you were circumcised in a circumcision done without hands, by the removal of the body of flesh in the circumcision of the Anointed,
  12. having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised with Him through faith in the work of God, the One who raised Him from the dead.
  13. And you – being dead in your sinful slip-ups and the uncircumcision of your flesh – He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven all our sinful slip-ups,
  14. having blotted out the handwriting in the decrees against us, which was hostile to us.  And He did – and does – remove it from our midst, having nailed it to the cross.
  15. And having completely disarmed the rulers and the authorities, He made a public show of them, having triumphed over(6)“having triumphed over” is one word in Greek.  It properly refers a victor parading around to celebrate their victory, and displaying the defeated enemy as part of the procession. them by the cross.
  16. Therefore, don’t let anyone judge you by your food and by your drink, or by your participation in a festival, or a new moon, or Sabbaths,
  17. which are a shadow of what’s about to happen; but the substance is the Anointed.
  18. Let no one defraud you of your reward with wrong judgement,(7)“defraud… …of your reward with wrong judgement” Is one word in Greek.  It properly refers to an incorrect judgement call made by an umpire, referee, or arbiter which disqualifies someone, and hence robs them of their rightful prize or reward. delighting in false humility and the worship of angels, detailing what he did – and does – claim to see; being vainly puffed up his mind of flesh,
  19. and not holding fast to the Head; from whom all the body – being supplied and knit together through the joints and ligaments – grows in the growth from God.
  20. If you died with the Anointed to the elementary principles of the world, why do you submit yourselves to regulations as if living in the world –
  21. “don’t handle” and “don’t taste” and “don’t touch”
  22. (which are all things that perish with use) – according to the precepts and teachings of men?
  23. These things are indeed reported as having wisdom in self-made religion, and false humility, and severe treatment of the body – but have no value against the indulgence of the flesh.

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Colossians Chapter 3

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Seek the things above
  1. Therefore, if you were raised with the Anointed, seek the things above where the Anointed is: sitting at the right hand of God.
  2. Set your minds on the things above, not on the things on the earth.
  3. For you died and your life was – and is – hidden with the Anointed in God.
  4. When the Anointed (who is your life) is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
  5. Therefore, put to death your earthly parts: fornication, impurity, depraved passion, wicked craving and covetousness (which is idolatry).
  6. Because of these things, the wrath of God comes on the sons of disobedience,
  7. in which you also once walked when you were living in them.
  8. But now, you must also cast off all these things: wrath, outbursts of anger, malice, and foul language from your mouth.
  9. Don’t lie to one another, having completely stripped off the old man with his practices
  10. and having clothed yourselves in the new man; the man who is being renewed in full knowledge according to the image of the One who created him,
  11. where there is no Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, or free; but the Anointed is all and in all.
  12. Therefore, clothe yourselves as God’s chosen, having been – and being – loved(8)“having been – and being – loved” The Greek word used here is “ἀγαπάω” (agapao), which is the verb form of “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference.  In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”.  In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel.    It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings.  (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) and holy, with inward compassion, benevolence, humility, gentle strength,(9)“gentle strength” is one word in Greek.  It comes from the root “pra-” which is typically translated “meek”  It more accurately refers to power that’s exercised gently, without harshness.  Our English word “meek” lacks the Greeks word’s blend of gentleness, reserve, and strength. and patience,
  13. bearing with one another and forgiving yourselves.  If anyone has a complaint against someone, then just as the Lord forgave you, in this way also you should forgive.
  14. Yet above all of these, clothe yourselves in love,(10)The Greek word here “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference.  In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”.  In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel.    It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings.  (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) which is a bond of maturity.
  15. And let the peace of the Anointed arbitrate(11)“arbitrate” This Greek word properly refers to someone acting as an umpire or referring in the games.  i.e. the one who acts as an arbiter, making a call when two sides are opposed. in your hearts, into which you were called in one body.  Also, be thankful.
  16. Let the word of the Anointed dwell in you richly, teaching in all wisdom and admonishing yourselves in palms, hymns, and spiritual songs; singing in grace to God in your hearts.
  17. And everything – whatever you might do in word or deed – do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus; giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
Conduct for Christian households
  1. Wives, submit yourselves(12)“submit yourselves” the endings for the middle and passive voice for this Greek verb are the same, so either could’ve been intended.  In the middle voice, it contains reflexive force (“subject yourself”) and thus has the connotation of voluntary obedience, so “wives must obey” is perhaps more accurate to the intended sense (though less literal).  In the passive voice it could be translated “wives must be submitted”.  The passive voice is less likely intended because then it could indicate that their submission/obedience is being done to them (i.e. they’re being made to submit). to your husbands as is proper in the Lord.
  2. Husbands, show preference(13)The Greek word used here is “ἀγαπάω” (agapao), which is the verb form of “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference.  In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”.  In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel.    It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings.  (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) to your wives and don’t be harsh or embittered(14)“harsh or embittered” is one word in Greek.  In the middle voice, it means to become embittered, in the passive voice it means to be harsh.  However, the middle and passive endings are the same for this particular Greek word, so either could’ve been intended and it’s likely that both were intended.  Therefore, both were included. toward them.
  3. Children obey your parents in everything, for this is pleasing in the Lord.
  4. Fathers, don’t provoke or exasperate your children to anger,(15)“provoke or exasperate… …to anger” is one word in Greek, with that exact meaning., so they won’t be broken in spirit.
  5. Slaves, obey your masters of flesh in everything.  Not only while the master watches(16)“only while the master watches” is one word in Greek, which literally means “eye-service”.  That is, only providing good service while the master watches. like people-pleasers do, but in purity of heart; reverently fearing the Lord.
  6. Whatever you might do, work from the soul as for the Lord and not for men,
  7. having known – and knowing – that you will receive the reward of the inheritance from the Lord.  You serve our Lord the Anointed.
  8. For the man who does wrong will be repaid for what he did wrong, and there is no partiality.

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Colossians Chapter 4

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Continued instruction
  1. Masters, give your slaves what is right and fair, having known – and knowing – that you also have a master in heaven.
  2. Continue steadfastly in prayer, being alert in it with thanksgiving.
  3. At the same time, praying also for us so God might open a door for us to speak the word: the mystery of the Anointed (because of which I also was – and am – bound),
  4. so I might make it clear as it’s necessary for me to speak.
  5. Walk in wisdom toward the men outside, taking full advantage of the opportune time
  6. with your words always spoken in grace; having been – and being – seasoned with salt, to know how you ought to answer each one.
Personal Greetings
  1. The beloved brother, faithful servant, and fellow slave in the Lord Tychicus will make known to you all the news in regard to me,
  2. whom I sent to you for the same purpose; so you may know the news about us, and so he may encourage your hearts,
  3. together with Onesimus, the faithful and beloved brother who is one of you.  They will make known to you all the news here.
  4. My fellow prisoner Aristarchus greets you, and Mark the cousin of Barnabas (about whom you received instructions; welcome him if he comes to you),
  5. and Jesus who is called Justus.  These are my only fellow workers for the kingdom of God from the men who are circumcised, who became a comfort to me.
  6. Epaphras (who is one of you) greets you; a slave of Jesus the Anointed who’s always striving for you in his prayers so you might stand mature, having been – and being – fully convinced in all the will of God.
  7. For I testify about him, that he has much concern for you, and the men in Laodicea, and the men in Hierapolis.
  8. Luke, the beloved physician greets you, and also Demas.
  9. The brothers in Laodicea greet you, and also Nymphas and the church at [his](17)“his” there is a textual variant on this verse centering on the pronoun, here translated “his”.  Some manuscripts read αὐτοῦ (his), some read αὐτῆς (her), and still others read αὐτῶν (their, singular neuter).  The pronoun refers to Nymphas, which could either be a masculine name or a feminine name (Nympha) depending on the accent.  Unfortunately, manuscripts weren’t accented until centuries after the originals were lost, so that doesn’t help determine gender.  Manuscript evidence is divided.  The Majority Text supports the masculine reading, though the lateness of the manuscripts doesn’t make that conclusive.  Give the divided manuscript evidence, Majority Text support, and lexical definitions as masculine, a masculine pronoun was chosen. house.
  10. And when this letter is read in your presence, make it so this letter may also be read in the Laodiceans’ church, and that you may read the letter from Laodicea.
  11. And tell Archippus: “See to the ministry you received in the Lord, so you might complete it.”
  12. This greeting is by my hand – Paul.  Remember my chains.  Grace be with you.  [Amen]

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