The Epistle of Paul to the
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 Warnings Against Errors

And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ.

As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;

And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ. Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,

And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God. Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh. (Colossians 2:4-23)

The Epistle of Paul to the COLOSSIANS

The town of Colosse was located on a ridge overlooking the Lycus River valley in central Asia Minor. At the time of Paul's writing, its neighboring cities, Laodicea and Hierapolis, were becoming more important while Colosse was in a period of decline. Travelers were using a newer road that went through the other two cities but by-passed Colosse. Churches were established in all three of these cities by Epaphras (Col. 4:12, 13) and Timothy, but Paul never visited the believers there personally (Col. 2:1). However, he did tell Philemon, a native of Colosse, that he was hoping to visit him (Phile. 1:22).

Paul is believed to have written to the Colossians about A.D. 60 during his first imprisonment in Rome. While most agree that it was written about the same time as Philemon, Ephesians and Philippians, it is not certain which was written first. Epaphras (also a native of Colosse; came to visit Paul in prison and gave him a report not only of the progress being made there but also of the problem with false teachers who had gained a foothold in the church. Paul sent the letter back with Onesimus (Philemon's slave) and Tychicus (Col. 4:7 -9), but for some unknown reason Epaphras did not return at that time (Col. 4:12).

Paul's purpose in writing this letter was to refute the heretical teaching that was influencing the Colossian church. Paul's references to circumcision, food regulations, and feast days (Col. 2:11-16) indicate that this heresy involved Judaistic tendencies. It differed from the heresy in Galatia in that it integrated an early form of Gnostic philosophy, which consisted of ascetic ideas (Col. 2:20 -23), and the worship of angels as intermediaries between God and man (Col. 2:18, 19). Supposedly, one could achieve perfection by progressing through a number of initiations and levels of wisdom in spiritual mysteries.

Instead of refuting the false teaching point by point, Paul shows that all things are fulfilled in the person of Christ. He stresses that all wisdom and spiritual understanding can be found in the God-Man who redeemed them and now holds authority over all things (Col. 1:9 - 2:19). He then goes on to explain the relationship of "mortifying" the deeds of the flesh to being alive through the Spirit (Col. 2:20 -3:17). Finally, he gives practical injunctions for Christian behavior (Col. 3:18 -4:6).
  [Source for Introduction of chapter: Hebrew Greek Key Study Bible KJV edited by Spiros Zodhiates, Th.D. AMG Publishers, Chattanooga, TN 37422]

Colossians 1
Colossians 2
Colossians 3
Colossians 4 
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