Showing posts with label Colossians. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Colossians. Show all posts

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Colossians 4

As a continuation from last chapter, Paul instructs Masters to remember that they do have a Master in heaven too.

Paul recommends continuance in prayer, with watchfulness and thanksgiving. Pray for the success of the gospel, and to reveal the mystery of Christ. He asked them to pray on his behalf too.

Next, Paul advises on how to react and behave when outside. He wants us to be gracious in our speech. The goal of every conversation should be to bring the best out of the other individual, never to put them down, or to cut them out.
Colossians 4:5-6 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
In his final greeting, Paul commends Tychicus and Onesimus, whom he sends to the Colossians to deliver details about Paul.

He mentions the greetings of several at Rome, sends his own greetings to those in Laodicea, and to Nymphas and the church at his house. Paul directs his epistle to be read in the church of the Laodiceans, and the epistle he wrote to the Laodiceans to be read at Colosse.

Finally, Paul reminds them about his chains, and this letter was written with his own hand.

Grace be with you.

Colossians 3

This is a good chapter on how to conduct ourselves as Christians.

In an appeal for Christian maturity, Paul encourages the church to seek the things that are above - where Christ sits on the right hand of God.
Colossians 3:2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 
He encourages to mortify earthly affections and sins – lies, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication.
Colossians 3:5-10 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 
Paul tells us what not to do, followed by what to do.
Colossians 3:12-14 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Forgive one another, even as Christ forgave us. Charity is the bond of perfectness. Sing psalms and spiritual songs, and do all in the name of the Lord Jesus.

An abbreviated version of 'Instructions for Christian Households' is given here. Husbands, wives, fathers, children, servants all have their social responsibilities – they should do all that they do heartily, as to the Lord, and not as to men. From the Lord we shall receive the reward of the inheritance.

Colossians 2

Paul expressed his concern for the church at Colosse and at Laodicea, exhorting them to steadfastness in the faith. His goal is to make them understand the mystery of Christ.
Colossians 2:2-3 My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
He asks them to watch out for hollow and deceptive philosophy and beware of being seduced by specious words.

Walk in Christ, and abound in faith and holiness. Christ is in whom the fullness of the Godhead dwells. Christ grants us spiritual circumcision; we are risen with him. God has forgiven all our sins, and the slate is now wiped clean.

Paul warns against those Judaisers who make stipulations about meats, drinks and festivals. There are also warnings about angel worship. For those of us who died in Christ, rules such as "do not handle! do not taste! do not touch!' are not applicable since we no longer belong to the world. Paul has more about such regulations:
Colossians 2:23 Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.

---------------Additional Info--------
Mystical Practices
Paul was worried by the type of worship the teachers practiced. He quotes it in
Colossians 2:18. Early Jewish mystics believed there was a way for humans to ascend into heaven and see God's throne and angels. Colossians seemed to have shared this belief. Mystics worshiped angels during their 'ascent into heaven' and encouraged others for angel worship as well.

What bothered Paul was the Gnostic teachings that infiltrated Christian churches in Colossia. Gnostic claimed to have a special revelation which they received while ascending into heavenly realms. Words such as 'mysteries' 'wisdom' and 'knowledge' were used in Gnostic followers. Paul tries his best to use those same words in the Christian context, via his letters. He wanted the Colossian church to worship Christ - the image of invisible God.


Colossians 1

This letter is from Paul and Timothy. Paul opens it with grace and peace. He has heard about their faith in Jesus Christ and their love in God's people. The truth of the gospel brings forth fruit in them and reveals to them the hope laid up in heaven. Paul has been continuously praying for them from the time he heard about them.

The Father has made us to be partakers of the inheritance of His holy people in the kingdom of light. He has rescued us from the power of darkness, and translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son.

Christ is the image of the invisible God, and the firstborn of every creature. By him all things were created; he is before all things, and he is the head of the church. He is the firstborn from among the dead. By his flesh and blood, all things are reconciled to the Father.

Hold fast to the gospel, which has been a mystery, but is now made manifest. Paul is made a minister of this gospel. We preach so that every man (including the gentiles) may be presented perfect in Christ Jesus.
Colossians 1:28 He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ.