1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, and Timothy our brother, 2to the saints and faithful brothers in Christ in Colossae. Grace to you and peace from God our Father.
Thanksgiving for the Colossian Believers
3We give thanks always to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ when we#*Here “when” is supplied as a component of the participle (“pray”) which is understood as temporal pray for you, 4since we#*Here “since” is supplied as a component of the participle (“heard about”) which is understood as causal heard about your faith in Christ Jesus and the love that you have for all the saints, 5because of the hope reserved for you in heaven, which you have heard about beforehand in the word of truth, the gospel, 6that has come to you, just as also in all the world it is bearing fruit and increasing, just as also among you from the day you heard about and understood the grace of God in truth, 7just as you learned it#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation from Epaphras, our dear fellow slave who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf,#Some manuscripts have “on your behalf” 8who also made clear to us your love in the Spirit.
Prayer for Maturity Based on Christ’s Preeminence
9Because of this also we, from the day we heard about it,#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation did not cease praying for you, and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual insight, 10so that you may live in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please him in all respects#Literally “to all pleasing”, bearing fruit in every good deed and increasing in the knowledge of God, 11enabled with all power, according to his glorious might, for all steadfastness and patience with joy, 12giving thanks to the Father who has qualified you for a share of the inheritance of the saints in light, 13who has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us#*Here the direct object is supplied from context in the English translation to the kingdom of the Son he loves#Literally “of his love”, 14in whom we have the redemption, the forgiveness of sins, 15who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all#*Translated as a genitive of subordination (Wallace, GGBB, 104) creation, 16because all things in the heavens and on the earth were created by him, things visible and things invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers, all things were created through him and for him, 17and he himself is before all things, and in him all things are held together, 18and he himself is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he himself may become first in everything, 19because he was well pleased for all the fullness to dwell in him, 20and through him to reconcile all things to himself, by#*Here “by” is supplied as a component of the participle (“making peace”) which is understood as means making peace through the blood of his cross, through him, whether things on earth or things in heaven.
21And although you were formerly alienated#Literally “and you formerly being alienated”#*Here the participle (“being”) is understood as concessive and enemies in attitude, because of your evil deeds, 22but now you have been reconciled#Some manuscripts have “he has reconciled you” by his physical body#Literally “the body of his flesh” through death, to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, 23if indeed you remain in the faith, established and steadfast and not shifted away from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.
Paul’s Suffering and Stewardship
24Now I rejoice in my sufferings on behalf of you, and I fill up in my flesh what is lacking of the afflictions of Christ, on behalf of his body which is the church, 25of which I became a minister, according to God’s stewardship which was given to me for you, to complete the word of God, 26the mystery which has been hidden from the ages and from the generations, but has now been revealed to his saints, 27to whom God wanted to make known what is the glorious wealth of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, 28whom we proclaim, by#*Here “by” is supplied as a component of the participle (“admonishing”) which is understood as means admonishing every person#Literally “man,” used here in a generic sense to refer to persons of either gender and teaching every person#Literally “man,” used here in a generic sense to refer to persons of either gender with all wisdom, in order that we may present every person#Literally “man,” used here in a generic sense to refer to persons of either gender mature in Christ, 29for which purpose also I labor, striving according to his working which is at work powerfully in me.