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Colossians Chapter 1

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, and Timothy our brother,

2 to the saints and faithful brothers in Christ at Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

3 We give thanks to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,

4 having heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love which you have towards all the saints,

5 because of the hope which is laid up for you in the heavens, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the Good News

6 which has come to you, even as it is in all the world and is bearing fruit and growing, as it does in you also, since the day you heard and knew the grace of God in truth,

7 even as you learnt of Epaphras our beloved fellow servant, who is a faithful servant of Christ on your behalf,

8 who also declared to us your love in the Spirit.

9 For this cause, we also, since the day we heard this, don't cease praying and making requests for you, that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,

10 that you may walk worthily of the Lord, to please him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God,

11 strengthened with all power, according to the might of his glory, for all endurance and perseverance with joy,

12 giving thanks to the Father, who made us fit to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light,

13 who delivered us out of the power of darkness, and translated us into the Kingdom of the Son of his love,

14 in whom we have our redemption, the forgiveness of our sins.

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.

16 For by him all things were created in the heavens and on the earth, visible things and invisible things, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things have been created through him and for him.

17 He is before all things, and in him all things are held together.

18 He is the head of the body, the assembly, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things he might have the preeminence.

19 For all the fullness was pleased to dwell in him,

20 and through him to reconcile all things to himself by him, whether things on the earth or things in the heavens, having made peace through the blood of his cross.

21 You, being in past times alienated and enemies in your mind in your evil deeds,

22 yet now he has reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and without defect and blameless before him,

23 if it is so that you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the Good News which you heard, which is being proclaimed in all creation under heaven, of which I, Paul, was made a servant.

24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and fill up on my part that which is lacking of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body's sake, which is the assembly,

25 of which I was made a servant according to the stewardship of God which was given me towards you to fulfil the word of God,

26 the mystery which has been hidden for ages and generations. But now it has been revealed to his saints,

27 to whom God was pleased to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery amongst the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

28 We proclaim him, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus;

29 for which I also labour, striving according to his working, which works in me mightily.

Footnotes

Verse 2 (Brothers)
The word for "brothers" here and where context allows may also be correctly translated "brothers and sisters" or "siblings."
Verse 7 (your)
Nestle-Aland/United Bible Societies critical text Greek New Testament reads "our"
Verse 14 (redemption)
Textus Receptus adds "through his blood,"

Version: World English Bible


Colossians Chapter 1 Guide

This letter is correlative to the Ephesians, and shows the glory of the Head of the Church as at her disposal. After expressing his thankfulness for the faith, love, and hope of the saints, Paul tells them that he was praying that they might be filled with the knowledge of His will," and declares that the reason of such prayer is that they may "walk worthily of the Lord."

Provision is made for this in the twofold fact that they have been "delivered" and "translated." Set free from the dominion of sin, they are "translated ... into the Kingdom of the Son of His love." It is here that Paul set forth the glories of the Person of the Redeemer in a passage that is unique for its revealing beauty. Of the invisible God, He is the Image. As to the creation, He is the Firstborn, that is, the One who has pre-eminence both as Originator and Sustainer. As to the Church, He is the Head, and now is described as "First-born from the dead." The apostle summarized the whole truth concerning the glories of the Person of Christ in his declaration, "It was the good pleasure of the Father that in Him should all the fullness dwell."

It is the purpose of God, through Christ, "to reconcile all things to Himself." The means of reconciliation is the Cross. The issue of the reconciliation is that those who were "alienated ... enemies in your mind in your evil works" are to become "holy ... without blemish ... unreprovable." In this connection the apostle claims that to him had been committed the stewardship of the truth concerning the Church as the medium through which the glorious purpose of God would be accomplished. Therefore, the aim of this epistle, and, indeed, of all apostolic work is admonishing and teaching every man toward the realization of perfection in Christ, because that issues in the perfecting of the whole Church.

From "An Exposition of the Whole Bible" by G. Campbell Morgan.