COLOSSIANS CHAPTER ONE

Introduction 1:1-8

A. Salutation, 1:1,2.

B. Thanksgiving expressed for them, 1:38.

VERSE 1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ (Pau/loj [n.m.s., Human author sent from prison in Rome 61AD] avpo,stoloj [n.m.s., station in the plan of God] Cristou/ [g.m.s. Cristo,j] VIhsou/ [g.m.s| VIhsou/j]) through the will of God and Timothy our brother (dia. qelh,matoj [g.n.t.s. qe,lhma, will, dia w/gen. expresses agency] qeou/ [g.m.s. Qeo,j] kai. Timo,qeoj [n.m.s.] o` avdelfo.j [n.m.s.]).

SUMMARY: VERSE 1

  1. Paul is his nickname (cognomen) meaning "little" because of his physical stature (cf. 2Cor.10:10).
  2. He became Judas' replacement (not Matthias) as the 12th apostle on the roster.
  3. He was the greatest of the apostles and the least deserving (Eph.3:8; cf. 1Cor.15:9).
  4. Paul cites his rank due to the fact:
    1. He had never been face-to-face with them.
    2. But especially due to the heretics in the area.
  5. The term apostle is used 3 ways in the N.T.
    1. Entirely in a general sense of a messenger (2Cor.8:23).
    2. Sometimes technical but broader in scope of one closely associated with an apostle (Act.19:14).
    3. Sometimes in a very restricted sense of the twelve chosen personally by Jesus (Lk.6:13; cp. Mk.3:14,15 [note the verb apostello]; Mt.10:2).
  6. There are also references to false apostles (2Cor.11:13; Rev.2:2).
  7. Paul had to constantly establish his title against detractors (he became known as the apostle "par excellence").
  8. To be an apostle a person had to:
    1. Be an eyewitness of the resurrected Christ (1Cor.10:1) (his was irregular).
    2. Be personally hand picked and commissioned by Jesus Himself.
  9. Paul was specifically commissioned to go to the Gentiles (Gal.1:7,8 et al.).
  10. Paul was independently and directly commissioned by the risen Lord.
  11. Hence, he is an apostle of Jesus Christ in whose interest he serves (considering the preeminence of Christ accorded Him in this epistle, especially this chapter. Paul served in a most favored capacity).
  12. Paul did not run without being sent. He was an apostle by divine sanction and decree.
  13. In places where his authority was in question he so wrote of his commission (1Cor.1:1; 2Cor.1:1; Gal.1:1; Eph.1:1; cp. 1Tim.1:1; 2Tim1:1). Paul regularly so introduces his rank (1Cor.1:1,2; 2Cor.1:1; Gal.1:1; Eph.1:1; cp. 1Tim 1:1; 2Tim 1:1).
  14. Paul does not accord the designation "apostle to Timothy or to Epaphras" in vs.7.
  15. Paul alone was their apostle even if he had never visited them in person.
  16. Timothy and Epaphras, however much he honored them as "fellow-servants", were his lieutenants, commissioned by him to aid him.
  17. In 1Thess.2:6, he links Timothy and Silas with himself as "apostles of Christ", a term used in a wider or semi-technical sense.
  18. Apostleship used in this sense is not based on an immediate commissioning of Christ.

  19.  

     
     

    Description of the Recipients

    VERSE 2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ at Colossae (toi/j a`gi,oij [d.m.p.adj. a[gioij] kai. pistoi/j [d.m.p.adj. pisto,j] avdelfoi/j [d.m.p. avdelfo,j] evn Cristw/|( [l.m.s.] evn Kolossai/j [l.f.p. Kolossai,]): Grace to You and peace from God our Father (ca,rij [n.f.s.] u`mi/n [d.p. su,] kai. eivrh,nh [n.f.s] avpo. qeou/ [abl.m.s. Qeo,j] patro.j [abl.m.s. path,r] h`mw/nÅ [g.p. evgw,|]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 2

  20. Paul gives a twofold description of those he sends this letter to.
  21. The designation "saints" is a Ph1 characterization, not a Ph2 (experiential).
  22. The term "saint" denotes someone set apart to God from the rest of mankind.
  23. All who have believed in Christ are so designated.
  24. "Saint" is strictly a Ph1 or positional title.
  25. It does not follow that all saints will effectuate Ph2 sanctification.
  26. As saints, we have special privileges and a blessed hope.
  27. The second designation "faithful" characterizes the Ph2 of the believers at Colossae.
  28. The term modifies "brethren" so it cannot be used in a Ph1 sense (as in Act.10:45 "believers", pistoi,).
  29. The epistle is addressed to positive believers at Colossae (position of definite article).
  30. The non-faithful non-positive there are not included in the salutation or greeting.
  31. The word "faithful" is regularly used of positive, committed believers in Scripture (*Num.12:7 - Moses; Neh.7:2; Ps.31:23; cp. 78:8; Prov.28:20; Mt.25:21,23; Lk.16:10,11,12, 17; 1Cor.4:17; Eph.1:1; 6:21; Col.1:1,7; 4:7,9; 2Tim.2:2; *Heb.3:5; Rev.2:13).
  32. The believers there were a set apart and dedicated brotherhood.
  33. Paul uses the familiar formula "in Christ" to describe Christians as being incorporated in Christ.
  34. We are as closely united with him as parts are with the body.
  35. "In Christ" is technical for positional truth (see Doctrine of).
  36. Geographically the believers and the local church were at Colossae.
  37. God has a right local church and geography for you.
  38. He sends them his usual greeting.
  39. Both grace and peace come from God to positive vessels.
  40. Grace denotes that which, strictly speaking, we do not deserve.
  41. All categories of grace pursue positive volition.
  42. All of the provisions, blessings, opportunities, deliverance, forgiveness, etc. constitute the grace of life.
  43. Peace is primarily a reference to the inner peace of Phil.14:7.
  44. Such peace comes from the FHS and isolation of the STA (Gal.5:22).
  45. It is multiplied to us via knowledge (and application) of doctrine (2Pet.2:2).
  46. This is not the peace the cosmos offers (Jn.14:27; 16:33).

  47.  

     
     

    Paul's Thanksgiving for their Positive Volition (faith)

    VERSE 3 We give Thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Euvcaristou/men [p.a.i.1p. euvcariste,w, offer thanks] tw/| qew/| [d.m.p. Qeo,j] patri. [d.m.s. path,r] h`mw/n [g.p. evgw,] tou/ kuri,ou [g.m.s. kurio,j] VIhsou/ [g.m.s. Vihsou/j] Cristou/ [g.m.s. Cristo,j]), praying always for you (proseuco,menoi [pres.dep.pt.n.m.p. proseu,comai] pa,ntote [adv., always] peri. u`mw/n [g.p. su,]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 3

  48. Paul follows his usual pattern (one that is typical of non-Christian letter writing of the time) of expressing his thankfulness for them (in every letter except Galatians (also 1&2Tim.).
  49. "We" refers to Paul and his close assistants.
  50. All prayer is to be offered to God the Father.
  51. He is thanked for bringing them into the plan and establishing them in doctrine (cp. vss.12-14).
  52. He is the Father of our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ, for which we should especially be grateful.
  53. He assures them of his continual prayers on their behalf.
  54. Thanks is God's will (Eph.5:20; Col.3:17).

  55.  

     
     

    Reasons for Thanksgiving and Prayer (vss.4,5)

    VERSE 4 Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus (avkou,santej [ao.a.pt.n.m.p. avkou,w, part is casual - states grounds for action of the main verb] u`mw/n [g.p. su,, our] th.n pi,stin [ac.t.s. pi,stij] evn Cristw/| [l.m.s. Cristo,j] VIhsou/ [l.m.s. VIhsou,j]) and the love which you have for all the saints (kai. th.n avga,phn [ac.f.s. avga,ph|] h]n [ac.f.s. o[j] e;cete [p.a.i.2p. e;cw] eivj pa,ntaj [ac.m.p. pa,j] tou.j a`gi,ouj [ac.m.p.adj. a[gioj]).

    VERSE 5 because of the hope laid up for you in heaven (dia. th.n evlpi,da [ac.f.s. evlpi,j] th.n avpokeime,nhn [p.dep.pt.ac.f.s. avpo,keimai, be stored away, 4X: Lk.19:20; 2Tim.14:8, "crown of righteousness"; Heb.9:27] u`mi/n [d.p. su,] evn toi/j ouvranoi/j [l.m.p. ouvrano,j]) of which you previously heard in the word of truth that is the gospel ( h]n [ac.f.s. o[j, "of which"] prohkou,sate [ao.a.i.2p. proakou,w, hear before] evn tw/| lo,gw| [l.m.s. lo,goj] th/j avlhqei,aj [g.f.s. avlh,qeia] tou/ euvaggeli,ou [g.nt.s. euvagge,lion, gen. of apposition?]).

    SUMMARY: VERSES 4,5

  56. Paul now lists his reasons for thanksgiving and prayer.
  57. Note the familiar triad of faith, love and hope seen elsewhere in his letters (1Thess.1:3; 5:8; 1Cor.13:13).
  58. Their faith is their positive volition in the sphere of Christ (cp. Philm.5; 1Thess.3:16).
  59. The verse indicates the sphere of faith, not Christ as the object (prep. is evn not eivj) (Eph.1:15; 1Tim.1:14; 3:13; 2Tim.1:13; 3:15).
  60. Ph2 faith toward doctrine is in view (evn can be used where Christ is the object, Gal.3:26).
  61. The faith of positive volition, which they have, is as people who are "in Christ Jesus".
  62. Ph1 faith in Christ as the only object of faith placed them "in Christ".
  63. They possessed a Ph2 faith to compliment their Ph1 faith.
  64. Eph.1:15 is parallel to vs.4.
  65. Paul was also grateful for the application they had in that they demonstrated love for all believers.
  66. They had faith plus love.
  67. Note that the object was other believers (prep. is ei;j).
  68. They fulfilled the imperatives (requirements) of Scripture towards each other.
  69. They had been taught well and applied the royal imperatives toward each other.
  70. Paul heard of a community of positive believers who practiced the CWL as it pertained to each other.
  71. The basis for their faith and love is the Ph3 hope they came to embrace (dia w/acc. indicates the reason).
  72. The hope laid up for them in heaven is the blessings associated with a productive Ph2.
  73. The awareness or knowledge of SG3 stimulated them to press on in faith (intake) and love (application).
  74. Awareness of Ph3 hope motivates us to continue to exercise faith in doctrine and application toward one another.
  75. Ph3 hope is laid up in heaven for the faithful (cp. 2Tim.4:8; 1Pet.1:4; Heb.11:16).
  76. It (SG3 hope) is associated with Christ and His appearing; that is why He is called our hope (cp. 1:27; 1Tim.1:1).
  77. "Hope" includes all that is promised believers for the future with emphasis on SG3.
  78. The reality is in heaven, hence it is "hope" (unrealized).
  79. Hope realized is no longer hope (Rom.8:24).
  80. Christian hope was first introduced to them when they first heard the gospel (cp. Eph.1:12).
  81. In the gospel, they heard of immortality, resurrection, and Ph3.
  82. They continued to grow with respect to their understanding of this hope.
  83. The Ph2 aspect was realized.
  84. Paul describes the gospel as the word of truth (cp. Eph.1:13).
  85. Apart from which there is no reality of Ph3 hope.
  86. BD prepares us for our eternal future.
  87. This hope explains their continued faith and love.

  88. VERSE 6 which has come to you (tou/ paro,ntoj [p.a.pt.g.nt.s. pa,reimi, be present, "come"] eivj u`ma/j [a.c.p. su,]) just as in all the world also it is constantly bearing fruit and increasing (kaqw.j [comp.adv., just as] kai. evn panti. [l.m.s. pa,j] tw/| ko,smw| [l.m.s. ko,smoj] evsti.n [p.i.3s. eivmi,] karpoforou,menon [p.m.pt.n.nt.s. karpofore,w, bear fruit, 8X: Mt.13:23, parable of sower and good soil; also Mt.4:20; Lk.8:15, synoptic parallels; see Rom.7:4,5; Col.1:6,10] kai. auvxano,menon [p.p.pt.n.nt.s. auvxa,nw, increase, grow, spread, 22X: growth of plants, Mt.6:28; 13:32; physical growth of people, Lk.1:80; 2:40; WOG to positive volition, Act.6:7; 12:24; 19:30; spiritual growth, Eph.4:15; 1Pet.2:2; 2Pet.3:18}]) even as it has been doing (not in Greek) in you also since the day you heard of it (kaqw.j [compar.] evn u`mi/n [l.p. su,] kai. [also] avfV h-j [abl.f.s. o[j, "which" not transl. ado = since] h`me,raj [afl.f.s. h`me,ra] hvkou,sate [ao.a.i.2p. avkou,w]) and understood the grace of God in truth (kai. [and] evpe,gnwte [co.a.i.2p. evpignw,skw, understand] th.n ca,rin [ac.f.s. ca,rij] tou/ qeou/ [m.s. Qeo,j] evn avlhqei,a|\[l.f.s. avlhqei,a\]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 6

  89. In due course and at the right time the gospel reached Colossae.
  90. The point of Paul's addition in vs.6 is the greatness of Christianity.
  91. They need to be reminded that its range is worldwide.
  92. What was true in their midst was a microcosm of the world at large.
  93. This is in contrast to the little Judiastic sectlet that surfaced in their city.
  94. The gospel is bearing fruit and growing in the entire world as it has among them since the day they first heard it.
  95. The expression "in all the world" is not hyperbole.
  96. The Greek construction (periphrastic) emphasizes that fruit-bearing and growth are in full force, ever progressing, never stopping with any country or era.
  97. The whole world is the field for the gospel.
  98. The fruit bearing Paul refers to is the divine good production among them.
  99. It was so used in the parable of the sower (Mt.13:23; Lk.8:15).
  100. The term "increasing" emphasizes their expanding productivity.
  101. Both result where evangelism is followed by sound teaching.
  102. Paul's emphasis here is not an increasing in numbers as some suppose.
  103. The N.T. evidence is in favor of spiritual growth and productivity (cp. vs.10).
  104. Something that had been progressing among them since day one.
  105. They were a microcosm of the Christian world at large.
  106. They should not allow themselves to be influenced by an alien non-grace approach.
  107. They must avoid the narrow non-Biblical sectarian heresy.
  108. The reason for mentioning the gospel (Ph1 information) with production is that the gospel is our introduction to the faith.
  109. The seed in the parable of the sower in each instance is the gospel plus Ph2 doctrine.
  110. The Colossians received accurate Ph1 doctrine followed by correct Ph2 information.
  111. The two are essential to production.
  112. They were productive from the start and steadily increased.
  113. From day one they heard what they needed and understood the content (hit the ground running).
  114. The content is referred to as "the grace of God in truth".
  115. What they heard in advance was the truth, apart from which they are separated from grace.
  116. The gospel and doctrine is a grace message.
  117. All else is not grace and truth.
  118. Let them listen to nothing that is not pure grace.

  119.  

     
     

    Paul Pays Tribute to Their Immediate Spiritual Leader (vs.7)

    VERSE 7 just as you learned it from Epaphras (kaqw.j [comp.] evma,qete [ao.a.i.2p. manqa,nw, learn] avpo. VEpafra/ [ab.m.s. VEpafra/j]), our beloved fellow bondservant (h`mw/n [g.p. evgw,] tou/ avgaphtou/ [ab.m.s. avgaph,toj, adj.] sundou,lou [ab.m.s. su,ndouloj]), who is a faithful servant of Christ on our behalf ( o[j [n.m.s.] evstin [p.a.i.3s. evimi,] pisto.j [n.m.s.] dia,konoj [n.m.s.] tou/ Cristou/ [g.m.s. Cristo,j] u`pe.r u`mw/n [g.p. su,]).

    VERSE 8 and he informed us of your love in the Spirit (kai. [and] o` dhlw,saj [ao.a.pt.n.m.s. dhlo,w, make clear] h`mi/n [d.p. evgw,] u`mw/n [g.p. su,, "your"] th.n avga,phn [ac.f.s. avgaph,] evn pneu,matiÅ [i.nt.s. pneu/ma]).

    SUMMARY: VERSES 7,8

  120. The communicator from whom they first heard the message of grace was Epaphrus (short form of Epaphroditus but not the same one as in Phil.).
  121. He had gone to Colossae (and perhaps other cities of the Lycus Valley) as Paul's representative.
  122. This individual had evangelized and taught them the doctrine that had brought them thus far.
  123. Paul refers to him in terms of affection and praise.
  124. He had maintained loyalty to the authority and doctrine taught by the apostle all these years.
  125. His appearance in Rome demonstrated his fidelity to Paul's ways.
  126. "Beloved" is a term of Christian endearment.
  127. The closest of all ties for Paul is with men who share his philosophy and approach to the ministry.
  128. He was a fellow servant with Paul in his apostolic canon.
  129. The churches of the Lycus Valley, Hieropolis, Laodicia and Colossae testified to the character of his work.
  130. His visit in Rome was to inform Paul of how the churches were doing.
  131. Faithfulness characterized his ministry.
  132. He served on behalf of Paul's missionary team.
  133. Regarding the good news from the Colossian church, he reported on their "love in the Spirit" (only direct reference to the HS in Col.).
  134. That is to say, the love planted in their hearts by the HS.
  135. The HS dwells in us and teaches us how to relate to one another.
  136. In vs.4 Paul spoke of their mutual love for one another.
  137. Love includes all the applications, mental attitude and overt, that the HS fosters in us.
  138. They flourished in these things.

  139.  

     
     

    Paul's Prayer for Their Spiritual Progress (vss.912)

    VERSE 9 For this reason also (Dia. tou/to [ac.nt.s. ou-toj] kai. [also. The idea here is reflected in the phrase "that in fact is why" or "that is precisely why". Hearing specifics about them precipitated this kind of prayer content)], since the day we heard (of it) ( avfV h-j [abl.f.s. o[j from, which] h`me,raj [abl.f.s. h`me,ra same construction as in vs.6] h`mei/j [n.m.p. evgw,] hvkou,samen [ao.a.i.1p. avkou,w since Epaphras' report]), we have not ceased to pray for you (ouv pauo,meqa [pres.m.ind.1p. pau,w] proseuco,menoi [p.dep.pt.n.m.p. proseu,comai] u`pe.r u`mw/n [g.p. su,]) and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will (kai. aivtou,menoi( [p.m.pt.n.m.pl. aivte,w] i[na plhrwqh/te [ao.p.subj.2p. plhro,w] th.n evpi,gnwsin [ac.f.s. evpi,gnosij] auvtou/ [g.m.s. auvto,j his] tou/ qelh,matoj [g.n.t.s. qe,lhma]) in all spiritual wisdom and understanding (evn pa,sh| [l.f.s. pa/j] pneumatikh/| [l.f.s.adj. pneumatiko,j, spiritual, pertaining to the spirit. Goes with both nouns. Occurs at the end of the Greek phrase] sofi,a| kai. sune,sei [l.f.s. su,nesij, understanding, insight]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 9

  140. In verses 9-14 is the apostolic prayer for the believers at Colossae.
  141. Vs.9 is the actual petition.
  142. Then follows in vss.12-14 the thanksgiving.
  143. It is immensely valuable, for anybody to learn how to pray, to take careful note of the substance of this great prayer (parallels elsewhere; Eph.1:18,19).
  144. Remember Paul is praying for a positive, well-adjusted church, with an adjusted PT.
  145. The section is introduced with a statement that explains why it is Paul prays as he does.
  146. Epaphras' report of their spiritual character is why Paul prays as he does.
  147. The words "for this reason also" could be paraphrased to read "that is precisely why" (or "That, in fact, is why").
  148. Others have joined Paul in this same type of prayer ("we").
  149. Since news arrived of the condition at Colossae, Paul and company have redoubled their prayer efforts.
  150. There was no slacking up with this petition.
  151. Keep the essence of this prayer before the throne of grace.
  152. The actual petition is for:
    1. Knowledge of God's will (v.9).
    2. Issuing in conduct that is worthy of the Lord (v.10).
    3. The strength to do what it is we are supposed to do (v.11).
  153. In order for the first part of the petition to be realized, they must continue under sound teaching.
  154. They must continue as they have been under Epaphrus.
  155. The deficiency in their faith must be filled up with epignosis.
  156. Specifically, epignosis of God's will.
  157. The ministry of the local church must be devoted to teaching the entire Bible.
  158. God's will is found in His Word.
  159. We do not need to look elsewhere for information needed to relate us to God (2Tim.3:16).
  160. All matters pertaining to faith and practice should arise from the text.
  161. We are as Pastors and sheep to avoid the things that are not the product of proper exegesis.
  162. Respect for, and fear of, God is the beginning of wisdom (Prov.1:7; cf. Ps.111:10; Prov.9:10).
  163. Spiritual wisdom is that which God the HS reveals (1Cor.2:6-10).
  164. It is in contrast to the conventional wisdom of the cosmos (Jn 3:15-17).
  165. Spiritual understanding - some observations.
    1. We should pray for it (Ps.119:34,73,125,144,169).
    2. It is commanded (Prov.2:2,3,6; 4:1,5,7; 23:23).
    3. It comes from GAP (Ps.119:104,130; Prov.9:4,6,10; 15:32; 17:10).
    4. It is the source of life and blessing to those who gain it (Prov.3:13; 16:22; 19:8).
    5. It is closely linked with wisdom (Prov.7:4; 8:1,14; 14:33; 17:24).
    6. It is to be preferred over wealth (Prov.16:16).
    7. Jesus excelled in it (Lk 2:47).
    8. It enables you to be discerning (Prov.28:11; 1Pet 3:7).
    9. Negative volition does not delight in it (Prov.18:2).
    10. Positive volition accepts correction (Prov.19:25).
    11. It characterizes certain behavior (Prov.9:16; 17:27,28 illustrative of two behaviors).
    12. The Lord continually supplies it (2Tim.2:7; 1Jn.5:20).
    13. It comes as a result of application (Ps.111:10).
    14. The book of Proverbs is an excellent source of (Prov.1:2,5).
    VERSE 10 so that you may walk in a manner worthy of the Lord (peripath/sai [ao.a.infin. of peripate,w walk] avxi,wj (adv., in a manner worthy] tou/ kuri,ou [g.m.s. ku,rioj]), to please (Him) in all respects (avreskei,an [ac.f.s. avreskei,a, desire to please with a human object tends to represent a bad quality {obsequiousness as in Aristotle}. But with God as the object, it represents the ideal. Bad - see Col.3:22; 1Thess.2:4; Gal.1:10. Good - 2Cor.5:9] eivj pa/san [ac.f.s. pa,j]), bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God (karpoforou/ntej [p.a.pt.n.m.p. karpofore,w] evn panti [l.nt.s. pa,j) avgaqw/| [l.nt.s.adj. avgaqo,j] e;rgw| [l.nt.s.] kai. auvxano,menoi [p.m.pt.n.m.p. auvxa,nw, cp. v.6] th/| evpignw,sei [l.f.s. evpi,gnwsij] tou/ qeou/ [g.m.s. Qeo,j]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 10

  166. The result of right content is right conduct.
  167. The Lord is thereby pleased with our walk or conduct.
  168. Eph.4:1 and 1Thess.2:12 enjoin us to walk worthy of our calling and the One who called us.
  169. The constant perusal of the text enables us to walk worthy of Him in every respect.
  170. Every situation calls for an appropriate response.
  171. BD equips us to honor him in all we think, say, or do.
  172. The second phrase should be taken with the first.
  173. As follows "in a manner worthy of the Lord with respect to all pleasing".
  174. Hence, we are not to please Him only in part ("in everything").
  175. We are to make it our goal to implement all Scripture enjoins upon us.
  176. The participles "bearing fruit" and "increasing in the knowledge of God" explain what it means to "walk in a worthy manner unto all pleasing".
  177. A worthy walk based on GAP is manifested by:
    1. Divine good production.
    2. Continued assimilation of BD.
  178. Like a long road trip, you start with a full tank, travel awhile, and periodically stop for fuel.
  179. This cycle should characterize all of Ph2.
  180. Intake, application, intake.
  181. As you learn BD, you learn the works that please God (Heb.13:21; 2Tim.2:21; 3:16,17; Eph.2:10.
  182. God's plan is for us to bear fruit (Eph 2:10).

  183. VERSE 11 strengthen with all power (dunamou,menoi [p.p.pt.n.m.p. dunamo,w, strengthen, make strong] evn pa,sh| [instr.f.s. pa,j] duna,mei [instr.f.s. du,namij]), according to His glorious might (kata. to. kra,toj [ac.nt.s. kra,toj might, strength] th/j do,xhj [g.f.s. do,xa "the might of His glory"] auvtou/ [g.m.s. auvto,j]) for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience, joyously (eivj pa/san [ac.f.s. pa,j] u`pomonh.n [ac.f.s. u`pomonh,, w/respect to circumstances] kai. makroqumi,anÅ [ac.f.s. makroqumi,a] meta. cara/j [g.f.s. capa,]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 11

  184. Those who are the recipient of BD and who walk accordingly will be strengthened to endure all the CHPs and tests of Ph2.
  185. Divine strength comes from resident doctrine and the IHS.
  186. Resident doctrine directs, encourages, and sustains us in the A\C.
  187. Power comes from knowledge.
  188. The IHS through doctrine strengthens us on the glory road.
  189. All the power we need is there to see us through and to enable us to do God's will.
  190. This power is derived from the glory of his strength.
  191. We are given strength to overcome our natural human weaknesses.
  192. So that we can exhibit patience toward circumstances and people.
  193. So, avoid cowardice and anger under pressure.
  194. This endowment of power enables believers to stand firm in the face of opposition and every CHP that tests our faith.
  195. The believer must actively seek to apply under testing, thus tapping into the power source.
  196. There is no limit to what a positive, mature believer can endure.
  197. God's enabling power is unlimited for those who have been faithful to MPR.
  198. Anyone can cave in to the STA and human viewpoint under testing.
  199. However, the enabling power is there if we will but tap into it under testing.
  200. Patience is a product of the FHS (Gal.5:22).
  201. A quality that accompanies the believer under testing is inner happiness.
  202. +H (happiness) is a product of the FHS.
  203. We are not to exhibit an unhappy or sour expression.

  204. VERSE 12 giving thanks to the Father (euvcaristou/ntej [p.a.pt.n.m.p. euvcariste,w be thankful] tw/| patri. [d.m.s. path,r]) who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in light (tw/| i`kanw,santi [ao.a.pt.d.m.s., qualify, make capable, worthy] u`ma/j [ac.p. evgw,] eivj th.n meri,da [ac.f.s. meri,j, portion, part, share] tou/ klh,rou [g.m.s. klh,roj, lot - that which is thrown or drawn to reach a decision, share, part, place] tw/n a`gi,wn [g.m.p. a[gioj, saint] evn tw/| fwti,\ [l.n.t.s. fw/j]) (end sentence vs.9).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 12

  205. The participle "giving thanks" is parallel to the preceding ones: "strengthened", "increasing", "bearing fruit".
  206. It is used in reference to the Colossians and Paul and company.
  207. It naturally follows what we have in v.11.
  208. Patience and joy should be continually associated with thankfulness.
  209. Our thanks are directed to the Father.
  210. Because of what He has done for us in grace.
  211. The ground of our thankfulness is what the Father has done on our behalf.
  212. He has qualified us for something we are inherently unworthy.
  213. The grace, power and wisdom of God has rendered believers full participants in Ph3.
  214. Paul's language has as its background the distribution of Canaan to the people of His choice - Israel.
  215. Each tribe, family, and individual was allotted a portion of land.
  216. They enjoyed a Ph2 inheritance - the land of promise.
  217. Believers in the Church Age look for a better and eternal country.
  218. Each of us will be assigned a portion of the place called heaven.
  219. Both our salvation and Ph2 adjustments determine the nature of our Ph3 portion (cf. Act.20:32).
  220. Those who are in view are called "saints", and the realm of their inheritance is called "light" = Ph3.
  221. Our place and prestige in the eternal city will reflect our positive volition in time (cf. Col.3:24).
  222. We have much to be thankful for: the present reality of our placement in the plan of God (vs.13,14).

  223. VERSE 13 For He delivered us from the domain of darkness ( o]j [n.m.s., "He"; no "gar"] evrru,sato [ao.dep.i.3p. r`u,omai, deliver from danger, 18X; cp. 1Thess.1:10; 2Tim.14:17; 2Pet.2:7,9 h`ma/j [ac.p. evgw,] evk th/j evxousi,aj [abl.f.s. evxousi,a, authority; cp. Heb.2:14; noun is kra,toj; also 1Jn.3:8, "works of the devil"] tou/ sko,touj (g.n.t.s. sko,toj]), and transferred us to the kingdom of His much beloved Son (kai. mete,sthsen [p.a.i.3s. meqi,sthmi, remove, bring into, 5X: Lk.16:4; Act.13:22; 19:26; 1Cor.13:2] eivj th.n basilei,an [ac.f.s. basilei,a] auvtou/( [g.m.s. auvto,j] th/j avga,phj [g.f.s. avga,ph, the Son of His Love] tou/ ui`ou/ [g.m.s. ui`o,j]),

    VERSE 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins ( evn w-| [loc.m.s. o[j] e;comen [p.a.i.1p. e;cw] th.n avpolu,trwsin( [ac.f.s. avpolu,trosij] th.n a;fesin [ac.f.s. a;fesij] tw/n a`martiw/n\ [g.f.p. a`marti,a]).

    SUMMARY: VERSES 13,14

  224. What God has done for them is stated in terms of a change of dominion.
  225. Their pre-salvation situation was one of peril and hopelessness.
  226. The "jurisdiction of darkness" refers to their pre-salvation bondage to Satan's rule of darkness.
  227. This description of the cosmos (realm of darkness) occurs in Lk.22:53 (account of Jesus' betrayal and arrest).
  228. This domain is ruled by Satan who keeps mankind under his lies and propaganda.
  229. Mankind, being spiritually dead and ruled by the STA, is an easy captive.
  230. The peril comes from the fact that this domain is under God's wrath (Eph.2:3).
  231. Spiritual death perpetuated into eternity equals the second death.
  232. They lived under the twin dangers of temporal wrath (personal sins Rom.1:18).
  233. At salvation, they were rescued from these ever-present dangers.
  234. Now we are in a conflict with the forces of darkness that once held us in bondage (Eph.6:12).
  235. We were following Satan our ruler to the Lake of Fire.
  236. Now we are a part of a kingdom that ensures us a totally different outcome.
  237. While still in the devil's world for the moment, we are citizens of the kingdom of Christ.
  238. Here, all things are new.
  239. We no longer reside in spiritual death, or no longer have to be manipulated by satanic propaganda or lusts.
  240. The ruler of this kingdom is Christ, who has secured the victory over Satan at the First Advent.
  241. The forces of evil had only a brief moment of opportunity against the Son of God (Lk.22:53ff).
  242. He overcame death and the grave.
  243. He can now rescue positive volition form Satan's rule
  244. Believers presently are a part of the kingdom of light.
  245. So within Satan's realm is a kingdom within a kingdom.
  246. This kingdom has in fact always existed; it is now in the Church Age phase.
  247. Ultimately it will totally replace the realm of darkness when we rule with Christ on earth.
  248. As of salvation, we are in the cosmos, but not of it.
  249. As He was once in the world, so we are (1Jn.4:17).
  250. The cosmos is totally hostile to the believer's best interests (1Jn.2:16).
  251. The world system is on its way out (1Jn.2:17).
  252. The world did not honor or recognize Jesus; neither will we get any respect (1Jn.3:1).
  253. The cosmos marches to a different drummer (1Jn.4:5; cp. vs.6).
  254. Salvation enables us to overcome the world's fall (1Jn.5:4).
  255. Those who are genuinely positive listen to us (1Jn.4:6).
  256. In Christ, we have been ransomed from the slave market of sin.
  257. We have redemption and its corollary forgiveness of sins.
  258. This is not something we get later. We have it now.
  259. This redemption is in His blood - the purchase price of our freedom.
  260. When a person believes in Christ, past sins are forgiven.
  261. All sins were judged (1Jn.2:2).
  262. Christ entered the realm of darkness to redeem via His work on the Cross.
  263. Only those who believe in him receive the grace benefits.
  264. Act.26:18 constitutes a striking parallel in thought to these verses.

  265.  

     
     

    Paul's Christology, vss.15-23

    Christ is the Head of All Creation (vss.15-17)

    VERSE 15 And He is the image of the invisible God ( o[j [n.m.s.] evstin [p.a.i.3s. eivmi, With these two words, Paul abruptly launches into a new subject. Though Jesus Christ is the subject in vs.14, the long doctrinal section begins in vs.15] eivkw.n [n.f.s., image, cf. Rom.8:29; 1Cor.11:7; 2Cor.3:18; 4:14] tou/ avora,tou [g.m.s. avo,ratoj, invisible] tou/ qeou/ [g.m.s. qeo,j]), the firstborn of all creation (prwto,tokoj [n.m.s., firstborn 9X; 7X of Christ: {a}. birth, Mt.1:25; Lk.2:7; Heb.1:6; 1X of the firstborn of Israel, Heb.11:28; 1X of believers, Heb.12:23; {b}. creation, Col.1:15; {c}. resurrection, Rom.8:29; Col.1:18; Heb.12:23 (pl) (of believers in Him), Rev.1:5] pa,shj [g.f.s. pa/j] kti,sewj [g.f.s. kti,sij]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 15

  266. The following section contains one of the greatest Christology passages in Scripture.
  267. Vss.15-23 comprises the section.
  268. This is perhaps the most striking of Paul's expressions of conviction of the status of Christ.
  269. Remember that these words apply to one who was crucified some 30 years prior.
  270. Paul begins by describing Christ as bearing the image of the unseen, invisible God.
  271. This is to say that the very essence of God is perfectly revealed in Him.
  272. The invisible has become visible.
  273. John declared this truth in Jn.1:18; Jesus declared it in Jn.14:9.
  274. Paul, in Rom.1:20, states that through creation, God's divine attributes may be perceived.
  275. But in Christ a surpassing manifestation of the divine attributes and graces has been given.
  276. In Heb.1:3, the author expressed the same truth in another form: "And He (Christ) is the radiance (avpau,gasma effulgence) of His (God's) glory (essence), and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power."
  277. In 2Cor.4:4,6, Christ is the image of God in whom the gospel is revealed.
  278. Man is said to have been created in the image of God (Gen.1:26ff).
  279. This image was defaced in the fall.
  280. Yet man still reflects God's glory and image (1Cor.11:7).
  281. We are told in this epistle that when we are "in fellowship", we reflect that image as it was intended from creation (Col.3:10).
  282. And is epitomized in the incarnation.
  283. Now Christ's humanity exhibits an undiminished display of God's unseen attributes.
  284. The Son of God perfectly mirrors what the unseen God is all about. (Nothing is held back. In His person the wisdom, knowledge, power, and grace is revealed.)
  285. Jesus Christ then has the ability to display God's total glory because He is the God-Man.
  286. Paul, through vs.17, discusses Christ's celebrityship as it relates to the creation.
  287. The term "firstborn" implies He was here before the creation was and is supreme over it.
  288. "Firstborn" should be understood in light of the ancient Law of primogeniture.
  289. This tradition practiced by the Jews (divine sanction) granted certain privileges to the firstborn male of the family (cf. Gen.4:7).
  290. The term is used of the person of Christ respecting:
  291. a. His deity (Col.1:15).
  292. b. His birth as a man (Mt.1:25).
  293. c. His resurrection (Col.1:18).
  294. The idea is here that His deity predated original creation.
  295. The context and other Scripture makes it clear that He was NOT the first of all created beings.
  296. This false doctrine has been espoused by gnosticism and various cults and religions (Mormonism).
  297. His relationship to the Father is that of eternal generation.
  298. The point here is that He existed as God before the creation.
  299. His eternal preexistence is affirmed in various passages and ways.
  300. If He is equal with God, then eternal preexistence is demanded.

  301. VERSE 16 For by Him all things were created ( o[ti [causal] evn auvtw/| [instr.m.s. auvto,j] ta. pa,nta [n.nt.p. pa/j] evkti,sqh [ao.p.i.3s. kti,zw]), both in the heavens and on earth (evn toi/j ouvranoi/j [l.m.p. ouvrano,j] kai. evpi. th/j gh/j( [g.f.s. gh/]), visible and invisible (ta. o`rata. [n.nt.p. o`rato,j, visible] kai. ta. avo,rata( [n.nt.p. avo,rata(]) whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities (ei;te [conj.] qro,noi [n.m.p. qro,vnoj] ei;te kurio,thtej [n.f.p. kurio,thj, dominion or authority, 4X: Eph.1:21; 2Pet.2:10; Jd.8] ei;te [conj.] avrcai. [n.f.p.] ei;te evxousi,ai\ [n.f.p. evxousi,a, cp. Lk.21:53; 12:11, human; also. Rom.13:1]) all things have been created through Him and for Him (ta. pa,nta [n.nt.pl. pa/j] e;ktistai\ [pf.p.i.3s. kti,zw] diV auvtou/ [gen.m.s. auvto,j] kai. eivj auvto.n [ac.m.s. auvto,j]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 16

  302. Christ, then, is prior to all creation; and as the firstborn of God, is heir of it.
  303. Remember that the firstborn was the principle heir.
  304. By Him all things were created, Christ is the agent by which the work of creation takes place.
  305. The preposition "through " is also used of Him as the agent (cf. 1Cor.8:6; Heb.1:2; Jn.1:3; and our verse, vs.16).
  306. Here, Paul's reaching is corroborated by the writer to Hebrews (1:2) and in John's pointed manner (Jn.1:3).
  307. Paul's doctrine reflects Gen.1.
  308. With special regard to the Colossian heresy, Paul goes on to emphasize the extent all things were created by Him.
  309. He created those spiritual powers, which received such prominence in that heresy.
  310. Included in the scope of His creative work were the entities of the invisible spiritual order.
  311. All angels, elect and fallen.
  312. Also included are those of the visible material realm.
  313. In view of the situation at Colossae, the hostile powers are what Paul has in mind.
  314. In chapter 2, he vanquished them.
  315. Paul distinguishes four classes of angelic beings.
  316. They probably represent the highest orders of the angelic realm.
  317. The variety of ways in which the titles for them are combined is against any attempt to reconstruct a fixed hierarchy (as in 2:10,15; Eph.3:10; 6:12).
  318. There is a hierarchy in the angelic order.
  319. All were created by Him and are subject to Him.
  320. They cannot do anything to jeopardize the plan of God.
  321. Christ is also the creator and director of human society and governments.
  322. The human or establishment chain of command is subject to Him.
  323. He establishes rulers and nations (Dan.4:24,25,34,35; Act.17:26; Rom.13:1ff).
  324. Christ is not only the agent of creation ("through Him") but also the goal of creation ("for Him").
  325. Christ is the Father's heir.
  326. He inherits as firstborn all things (see Eph.1:10; Heb.1:2).

  327. VERSE 17 And He is before all things and by Him all things hold together (kai. auvto,j [n.m.s., "He"] evstin [p.i.3s. eivmi,] pro. pa,ntwn [g.nt.p. pa/j] kai. ta. pa,nta [g.nt.p. pa/j] evn auvtw/| [instr.m.s. auvto,j] sune,sthken( [pf.a.i.3s. suni,sthmi, hold together]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 17

  328. In this verse, Paul summarizes the teaching of vss.15,16.
  329. He reaffirms Christ's preexistence and abiding relationship to creation.
  330. Christ's preexistence emphasizes that attribute of eternal life.
  331. Jn.1:1 tells us that no matter how far back we go into eternity past, the Son of God, as God, existed.
  332. Micah 5:2 declares, in the prophecy of his human birth, that eternally He preexisted.
  333. Paul declares His priority to the universe, as well as His primacy to it.
  334. Paul, in the second statement of this verse, adds a thought.
  335. He maintains or supports what He brought into being.
  336. This, along with the initial act of creation, emphasizes omnipotence.
  337. This truth of His sustaining power is seen in Heb.1:3.

  338.  

     
     

    Christ as the Head of the Church (vs.18)

    VERSE 18 He is also head of the body, the church (kai. [also] auvto,j [n.m.s., emphasis] evstin [p.i.3s. eivmi,] h` kefalh. [n.f.s.] tou/ sw,matoj [g.n.t.s. sw/ma] th/j evkklhsi,aj\ [g.f.s. evkklhsi,a]); and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead ( o[j [n.m.s.] evstin [p.ind.3s. eivmi,] avrch, [n.f.s.] prwto,tokoj [n.m.s.] evk tw/n nekrw/n( (abl.m.p. nekro,j, adj.]); so that He Himself might come to have first place in everything ( i[na [purpose] auvto.j [n.m.s.] ge,nhtai [ao.dep.subj.3s. gi,nomi] prwteu,wn( [p.a.pt.n.m.s. prwteu,wn, to have first place] evn pa/sin [l.n.t.p. pa/j]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 18

  339. Thus far, Paul has set forth the doctrine of Christ in terms he shares with other N.T. writers.
  340. Now he goes on to make his own contribution.
  341. The metaphor that Christ is "the head of the body, the church".
  342. Christ and believers are viewed together as a living unit.
  343. Christ is the head exercising control and direction.
  344. Believers are His body individually, His limbs and organs, under His control, obeying His direction, performing His work.
  345. Believers often do not do what the head wishes through no fault of the head (the body through injury or disorder can fail to serve the head).
  346. In 1Cor.12:12-27, Paul says the believers are Christ's body: "Now you are Christ's body, and individually members of it" (vs.27).
  347. Here Paul teaches that, while there is a diversity of parts and a difference in function, that all should function for the mutual benefit of the whole.
  348. No part should despise or be jealous of another.
  349. Our position in the body varies according to our pre-assigned gift (cp. 12:28ff).
  350. Again in Rom.12:4ff Paul states the diversity of function of the many parts, while at the same time declaring our mutual interdependence.
  351. There is a variety of services rendered by the diverse members of the Church in accordance with their respective gifts, all for the benefit of the whole.
  352. In these earlier epistles (Cor. and Rom.), Paul uses the metaphor to teach how the various parts are to serve the whole.
  353. The emphasis is on their relationship to each other.
  354. But in Colossians and Ephesians, he focuses on the relationship the body bears to Christ, the head (versus constituent parts) (Eph.1:22,23; 4:15).
  355. When we speak of the Church as Christ's body, we think of it as the instrument through which He carries out His work on earth.
  356. Proper relationship to the head demands each believer comes under the communication gifts (Eph.4:11,12; cp. vs.15,16).
  357. Each believer becomes a part of the body via the BHS at salvation (1Cor.12:13; cp. Gal.3:26-28).
  358. The word "church" here refers to the whole body of believers.
  359. As the risen Head of His body the Church, He receives the titles "the beginning" and "the firstborn".
  360. These titles are also used in creation as well.
  361. He is the beginning of a new creation.
  362. With His resurrection, He stands as the head of a new creation (2Cor.5:17).
  363. After His triumph, a new entity comes into existence.
  364. As its beginning He is:
    1. Superior to it in rank.
    2. Before it in time.
    3. The origin of its existence.
  365. The Church is His new creation whom He will prepare a new physical creation.
  366. As to the original creation he stands as "the beginning":
    1. As to rank.
    2. As to time.
    3. As to first cause.
  367. He is the firstborn from the dead; His resurrection marks a new era for man.
  368. No one else can be so designated.
  369. He stands as the first man to be resurrected, signaling victory for all who are His (Rom.8:11).
  370. Future resurrection is anticipated in this title.
  371. By His relationship to the Church and creation, He has preeminence in all that pertain to both.
  372. He has the power and authority to reign supreme over it all.

  373.  

     
     

    Christ as Reconciler of All Things (vss.19,20)

    VERSE 19 For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the (divine) fullness to dwell in Him (o[ti [causal - for] euvdo,khsen [ao.a.i.3s. euvdoke,w be pleased, take pleasure in. What is the subject of the verb? Is it God, Christ, or all the fullness? Because of what is the subject of vs.20, "Christ" is unlikely. It is somewhat difficult to take qeo,j as the subject since vs.13 is the last verse where qeo,j is the subject of a verb. In 2:9 pa/n plh,rwma is certainly the subject of the verb "dwell"] pa/n [n.nt.s. pa/j] to. plh,rwma [n.nt.s., 17X: used in the synoptics of a patch on a garment, Mt.9:16; of the leftover pieces of food which filled several baskets after the miraculous feedings, Mk.6:43; 8:20; in Rom.13:10 of love "fulfilling" the Law; in Rom.15:29 of the "fullness" of divine blessing with which Paul hopes to visit Rome. In 1Cor.10:26 it appears in a quotation from Ps.24:1 of the fullness of the earth. In Gal.4:4 and Eph.1:10 it is used of an appointed period of time that has arrived. In Jn 1:16 it is used of the "fullness" of Christ of which we have all received. In Eph.3:19 we have "the fullness of God" which fills believers - development of the inner man; in Eph.4:13 of the "fullness of Christ" in the sense of Christian maturity; in Eph.1:23 it is used of the church, His body; and in Col.1:19 and 2:9 it refers to the divine attributes or essence which resides in Christ] katoikh/sai [ao.a.infin. katoike,w, dwell, reside; cp. 2:9] evn auvtw/| [l.m.s. auvto,j, Him - Christ]),

    SUMMARY: VERSE 19

  374. The statement that Christ is preeminent over every order of created thing is further amplified.
  375. The terms used were probably calculated to appeal to the Colossians in their present situation.
  376. The term "fullness" was probably employed by the heretical teachers at Colossae as a technical term.
  377. To denote the sum total of divine emanations or intermediaries through which men had contact with God.
  378. Gnostics taught that any communication with God was through a vast network of intermediary powers.
  379. Paul uses their term to refer to the sum total of divine essence.
  380. All divine attributes have taken up residency in one person, Christ.
  381. He is, therefore, all we need to establish relationship with God.
  382. Fullness = the divine attributes.
  383. Paul's similar statement in 2:9 is even more explicit.
  384. It was (the God's Pleroma's) good pleasure to enter a hypostatic union.
  385. It pleased His deity to condescend to dwell in Him in the unique sense.
  386. If God (or Father) is the subject of the verb, there is no violation of doctrine.

  387. VERSE 20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself (kai. avpokatalla,xai [ao.a.infin. avpokatalla,ssw 3X: Col.1:20,21; Eph.2:16; intensified form of katallossw appearing in Rom.5:10 {twice}; 2Cor.5:1820; 1Cor.7:11, but not in a theological sense; its cognate noun katalagh is used in Rom.5:11; 11:15; 2Cor.5:18,19. This verb is not used before the N.T. occurrences in Ephesians and Colossians] diV auvtou/ [g.m.s. auvto,j] ta. pa,nta [ac.nt. pa/j] eivj auvto,n( [ac.m.s. auvto,j, if rough breathing = "Himself" = e`autou/]) having made peace through the blood of His cross (eivrhnopoih,saj [ao.a.pt.n.m.s. eivrhnopoie,w, 1X, make peace; cp. Eivrhnopoi,oj, peacemaker, 1X of Mt.5:9] dia. tou/ ai[matoj [g.nt.s. ai-ma]] tou/ staurou/ [g.m.s. stauro,j] auvtou/( [g.m.s. auvto,j]); Through Him (I say) whether Things on Earth or things in heaven (ÎdiV auvtou/Ð [g.m.s. auvto,j. Some manuscripts and not others support this phrase! Majority of committee considered it valid, a minority rejected it] ei;te [conj.] ta. [ac.nt.p.] evpi. th/j gh/j [g.f.s. gh/] ei;te ta. [ac.nt.p.] evn toi/j ouvranoi/jÅ [l.m.p. ouvrano,j]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 20

  388. The resultant hypostatic union provided a person who was uniquely and fully qualified to reconcile all things to God.
  389. By being God, Christ can execute divine offices and prerogatives on behalf of men.
  390. By becoming Man, He could provide mankind with a true humanity necessary to bear sins.
  391. It pleased the fullness (or the Father) to reconcile all things to Him through Christ.
  392. "Through Him" refers to Christ; "to Himself" refers to the Father.
  393. It pleased deity to effectuate reconciliation.
  394. "All things" is the scope of reconciliation.
  395. While this reconciling activity has particular reference to human beings, it has a cosmic or natural world aspect as well.
  396. The physical creation comes under the work of reconciliation.
  397. The need for reconciliation came as a result of man's fall.
  398. Sins formed the basis for the enmity between God and man.
  399. Since the work of Christ on the Cross was toward personal sins, the basis for the enmity was removed.
  400. God's +R demanded that all sins be judged.
  401. The fall of man brought not only an estrangement between Him and God, but a curse on lower creation (Gen.3:14-19).
  402. Lower creation continues to groan under this curse (plants, animals, etc.) (Rom.8:19-22).
  403. Christ's work makes it possible for God to finally lift the Adamic curse.
  404. The curse will be largely lifted during the Millennium and totally removed in the eternal state (Rev.22:3).
  405. The estranged lower creation is also reconciled through the Cross.
  406. Christ its creator reconciles or reclaims that which was estranged in the fall.
  407. Thus becoming heir of a perfect order.
  408. As long as Satan has some claim, an unresolved issue remained.
  409. The Cross cancels Satan's illegal hold.
  410. At the Second Advent, Christ returns to claim what is rightfully His (Rev.5:1ff).
  411. Adam not only became hopelessly lost at his fall, he also lost his inheritance of the earth.
  412. Jesus Christ, the "last Adam", reclaimed the lost possession for mankind on the Cross.
  413. The actual forceful taking of the earth as His inheritance occurs in connection with the Tribulation and Second Advent.
  414. The Cross is the legal basis for it.
  415. Only the LJC can break the 7 seals that leads to the things, which effectuate His occupancy (Rev.5).
  416. Adam was impotent to redeem the lost possession.
  417. Under the Law, a kinsman may redeem lost property (Lev.25:23,24).
  418. Christ is the kinsman.
  419. To become such, He had to be born into the human race.
  420. Jesus paid the price, His blood (1Pet.1:18-20).
  421. At the Second Advent, He takes what legally, morally, and spiritually is His.
  422. Even our bodies are called His possession, redeemed at the Rapture (Eph.1:13,14).
  423. Ruth.4 illustrates Rev.5.
  424. Jesus' right to inherit and rule lies in two factors.
    1. He is the creator (Rev.4:8-11).
    2. He is the redeemer (Rev.5).
  425. Satan's claim has been nullified.
  426. Again God was pleased that
    1. All the fullness of deity dwelt in Christ (1st.ao.infin.).
    2. To reconcile all things to Him through Christ (2nd.ao.infin.).
  427. The phrase beginning with "having made peace" is subordinate to "to reconcile..."
  428. It explains the means of universal reconciliation.
  429. The blood is technical for Christís spiritual death, not His physical bleeding or his physical death.
  430. If Christ's physical death saved, then it seems He would have had to die by bleeding to death.
  431. While He bled in connection with pre-crucifixion and crucifixion, He did not shed a life-threatening amount of blood.
  432. Blood loss did not effect consciousness, much less death.
  433. Notice that Paul speaks of the blood of the Cross (gen. of place).
  434. Reconciliation is something that resulted as a result of something that occurred on the Cross.
  435. His blood does not refer to His actual bleeding at all.
  436. His blood is a representative analogy to the unique sufferings of the three hours.
  437. The physical bleeding to death of sacrificial animals illustrates the 3 hours Christ bore sins in His body on the Cross.
  438. After which He said "it is finished", and He was still very much alive.
  439. Conclusion.
    1. His physical bleeding and physical death have nothing directly to do with salvation per se.
    2. His spiritual separation and death from 12-3, in which supernatural darkness covered the earth, had everything to do with salvation.
    3. The sufferings inflicted on Him by men did not propitiate the father for sins.
    4. The sufferings imposed on Him directly by God did.
    5. The physical bleeding and dying of animals depict the agony of the 3 hours not including the crucifixion.
  440. Paul repeats that it was through Jesus the whole creation, animate and inanimate, was reconciled.
  441. It is incorrect to say that fallen angels benefited from Christ's work.
  442. His work led to their subjugation.
  443. Reconciliation cannot be applied to them in the ordinary sense (Heb.2:16).
  444. All hostile entities are reconciled through force (cp. 2:15; also 1Cor.15:28).
  445. His work of reconciliation gives Him the authority to bring into subjection all things.
    1. Peace that is freely accepted.
    2. Peace that is compulsorily imposed (fallen angels and unbelievers).
    Reconciliation as Applied to Them (RF) (vss.21-23)

    VERSE 21 And although you were formerly alienated (Kai. [and] u`ma/j [ac.p. su,] o;ntaj [p.a.pt.ac.m.s. eivmi,] pote [adv., formerly] avphllotriwme,nouj [pf.p.pt.ac.m.p., 3X, avpallotpio,w, be a stranger to, have no connection with, to be estranged - not in the sense of having had any other relationship with God. Cp. pt.p.pt. in Eph.2:12, as Gentiles to Covenant of Israel; 4:18 parallels our verse]) and hostile in mind, (engaged) in evil deeds (kai. evcqrou.j [ac.m.p. evcqro,j, adj., hostile] th/| dianoi,a| [l.f.s. dia,noia, mind, mental attitude] evn toi/j e;rgoij [l.n.t. e;rgon] toi/j ponhroi/j [l.n.t.p.adj. ponhro,j]),

    SUMMARY: VERSE 21

  446. The principle purpose of Christ's work of reconciliation is seen most clearly in its impact on those who have willingly subjected to the message of peace.
  447. Believers gratefully accept the amnesty, which the gospel offers.
  448. Such were the people to whom Paul wrote.
  449. Once they had been estranged from God, in revolt against His authority.
  450. They were slaves to the ISTA, making them God's enemies (Rom.7).
  451. Sinful evil behavior in the sphere of spiritual death was to live in the world without God (Eph.2:12; 4:18).
  452. They were, in their pre-salvation days, both estranged and hostile to the authority and righteousness of God.
  453. They were hostile in both their mental attitude and their external behavior.
  454. The rulership of the ISTA made them God's enemy.
  455. Evil thoughts and evil practices (STA vices) separated them from God.
  456. Their only hope was an offer of reconciliation, but they had to repent of their antagonism and accept God's terms.

  457.  

     
     

    The Final Objective With Respect to Their Reconciliation

    VERSE 22 yet He has now reconciled you ( de. ["yet"] nuni. (adv.) avpokath,llaxen [ao.a.i.3s. avpokatalla,ssw, 3X: Eph.2:16; Col.1:21,21 - intensive form]) in the body of His flesh (evn tw/| sw,mati [l.nt.s. sw,ma] th/j sarko.j [g.f.s. savrx] auvtou/ [g.f.s. auvto,j]) through death (dia. tou/ qana,tou [gen., means m.s. qa,natoj]), in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach (parasth/sai [ao.a.infin. pari,sthmi, present, expresses purpose] u`ma/j [ac.p. su/] a`gi,ouj [ac.m.p.adj. a[gioj] kai. avmw,mouj [ac.m.p.adj. a;mwmoj, without blemish, 7X: Eph.1:4 {of Ph2}; 5:27, whole Church in Ph3; Heb.9:34 and 1Pet.1:19, Christ's humanity; Jd.24, goal of Ph2 is to be presented blameless; Rev.14:5, of Ph2 of 144,000] kai. avnegklh,touj [ac.m.p.adj. avne,gklhtoj, beyond reproach, irreprehensible, 5X: 1Cor.1:8, Ph2 of believers; 1Tim.3:10; Ti.1:6,7, of deacons and PT's to be qualified to hold office] katenw,pion [prep.w/gen, in the presence of, 5X of Ph2 or Ph3] auvtou/( [g.m.s. auvto,j - with the infinitive this is clearly a reference to the Bema]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 22

  458. But as of their conversion, a great reversal has taken place.
  459. They who were alienated from God are at peace.
  460. The act of Christ bearing sins in His own body freed God to provide reconciliation.
  461. In v.20, we were told the reconciliation was won for us "through the blood of His Cross".
  462. Here we are told that reconciliation is "in the body of His flesh through death".
  463. Paul underscores the fact that it was Jesus' actual body of flesh that experienced the death for our reconciliation.
  464. Jesus did not bleed to death.
  465. He finished the work of salvation before He died physically.
  466. The death He died for sins was the 3 hours of His soulish and physical anguish in total darkness.
  467. During that time, He was judged for every sin.
  468. If physical blood and physical dying were the issue, logically He would have had to die by loss of blood.
  469. Animals died by bleeding to death under the Law.
  470. The final purpose of Christ's work of reconciliation is that believers might appear before Christ "holy, blameless and without reproach".
  471. To be reconciled Ph1 is not an end in itself.
  472. Faith in Christ secures the Ph1 benefits of reconciliation with God.
  473. There is no condemnation or alienation from God.
  474. The issue that follows has to do with the Ph2 reconciliation of the individual (cf. 2Cor.5:20).
  475. The formal presentation in view here is the Bema Seat (1Cor.3; 2Cor.5:10).
  476. The designations "holy", etc. are in this instance Ph2 attainments.
  477. "Holy" is the experiential result of adhering to God's perfect standards (cf. Rom.12:1; Eph.1:4; 1Thess.5:27; 1Tim.2:8; Ti.1:8; 1Pet.1:15; 3:5; 2Pet.3:2,11; Rev.18:20).
  478. The next term is regularly used of a Ph2 condition in the N.T. (Eph.1:4; 5:27 [Ph3 sanctification]; Heb.9:34; 1Pet.1:19 [Christ's humanity]; Jd.24; Rev.14:5; cp. avmw,mhtoj of 2Pet.3:14).
  479. The term blameless means to be without anything associated with an inward or STA blemish that would render one unfit for the prize (cp. 1Pet.1:19).
  480. The third designation is used of believerís Ph2 in an eschatological setting (1Cor.1:8). Also used of qualifications for Pastors and deacons (1Tim.3:10; Ti.1:6,7).
  481. This term means that no accusation can be brought against the believer who finishes his course (is not in violation of the rules).
  482. All three terms denote a standard, which God expects of each believer in doctrine and practice.

  483.  

     
     

    The Deciding Factor - Continuance With BD (vs.23)

    VERSE 23 if indeed you continue in the faith (ei; [conditional, if assuming you do] ge [emphatic particle] evpime,nete [p.a.i.2p. evpime,nw, remain, continue] th/| pi,stei [l.f.s. pi,stij, for BD]) firmly established and steadfast (teqemeliwme,noi [pf.p.pt.n.m.p. qemelio,w, cognate noun qeme,lion, means "foundation", cf. Eph.2:20, metaphorical; 1Tim.6:19, the verb means to lay a foundation, cf. Heb.1:10; Lk.6:48. Here the metaphorical meaning is to establish firmly. Cf. Eph.3:17, "grounded"; and 1Pet.5:10, "establish"] kai. e`drai/oi [n.m.p.adj. evdrai/oj, firm, steadfast, 3X: 1Cor.7:37; 15:58; cp. noun evdrai/wma of 1Tim.3:15, foundation, support, base]), and not moved away from the hope of the gospel (kai. mh. metakinou,menoi [p.p.pt.n.m.p. metakine,w, shift, move, dislodge, 1X: Kittle 3:718. The verb kine,w means "to set something in motion", "to propel forward". 8X: Mt.28:4; 27:39; Mk 15:29; Act.17:28 {"move"}; 24:5 {stir up}; Rev.2:5; 6:14. Cognate metakine,w is not very common] avpo. th/j evlpi,doj [a.b.f.s. evlpi,j] tou/ euvaggeli,ou [g.nt.s. euvagge,lion]) that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven (ou- [g.nt.s. o[j] hvkou,sate( [ao.a.i.2p. avkou,w] tou/ khrucqe,ntoj [ao.p.pt.g.nt.s. khru,ssw] evn pa,sh| [l.f.s. pa/j] kti,sei [l.f.s. kti,sij] th/| [l.f.s. as rel.pro.] u`po. to.n ouvrano,n( [ac.m.s. ouvrano,j]) of which I, Paul, was made a minister (ou- [g.nt.s. o[j] evgw. [n.s.] Pau/loj [n.m.s.] evgeno,mhn [ao.dep.i.l.s. gi,nomai] dia,konojÅ (n.m.s.]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 23

  484. Continuance in the faith is the necessary precondition to appearing at the Bema holy, blameless, etc.
  485. They must continue in doctrine from this day to the last.
  486. The ultimate goal of reconciliation is only realized where there is Ph2 reconciliation.
  487. Three things characterize continuance in the faith to the end.
    1. Firmly established in doctrine.
    2. Steadfast with respect to the things learned.
    3. Unmoved with respect to the faith by outside pressures.
  488. The first term has to do with laying a firm doctrinal base.
  489. This takes time but is absolutely necessary for the long haul.
  490. All the basic and essential doctrines must be inculcated.
  491. The second quality one must possess is a resolve to continue with the straight and narrow regardless of the cost.
  492. The term or idea behind "steadfastness" can be seen in 1Cor.7:3-7 and it is found with respect to the CWL in 1Cor.15:58.
  493. And finally we must not allow anything to move us away from our Ph3 hope and vindication.
  494. Pressures from without or from within must not be allowed to influence our momentum.
  495. Family, friends, jobs, avocations, pleasures, soul fainting, STA behavior that is not incidental, desire to please men, etc., are all included.
  496. Many have moved away from the Ph3 hope that first came to us in the gospel (see 1:5).
  497. The gospel, when properly presented, reveals the prospect of eternal blessedness to all who believe.
  498. The gospel offers eternal hope to all who obey it.
  499. Step 1 is salvation, which ensures that the believer is guaranteed immortality of soul and body after this life.
  500. Step 2 is all the SG3 that comes to those who, as believers, make all the right decisions so as to appear without shame.
  501. For those who strictly adhere to the whole truth comes the pinnacle of Ph3 blessing.
  502. Reversionism (to the end of Ph2) is to be moved away from the hope of Ph3.
  503. Paul once again in this chapter says that the gospel has received a worldwide proclamation.
  504. Even in his day, the gospel had made inroads to the centers of civilization, as well as remote places (see 1:6).
  505. We know that from Jerusalem, Christian Jews of the diaspora carried the gospel to the far corners of the empire.
  506. Paul is perhaps also engaging in prophetic anticipation.
  507. He then would be stating as a fact something that had not as yet fully occurred but was certain to, given time.
  508. The gospel has enjoyed universal appeal through the centuries and among the peoples of the earth.
  509. Paul states once again that he was appointed to be a servant or minister of the gospel.
  510. Paul sees his ministry as closely tied with God's plan for the world.

  511.  

     
     

    Paul's Statement of His Stewardship of the Revelation of God (vss.24-29)

    Verse 24 Now I rejoice in (my) sufferings for your sake (Nu/n [adv.] cai,rw [p.a.i.ls.] evn toi/j paqh,masin [loc.nt.p. pa,qhma] u`pe.r u`mw/n [g.p. su,], and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His Body (which is the Church) in filling up (kai. evn th/| sarki, [l.f.s. sa,rx] mou [g.s. evrgw,] avntanaplhrw/ [p.ai.l.s. avntanaplhro,w, 1X. This rare compound not found in the LXX, the a,nti denotes mutual representative or repeated "supplementing" or "replacing" with some overlapping of the specific nuances. The translation "I do my share...in filling up"] u`pe.r tou/ sw,matoj [g.nt.s. sw/ma] auvtou/( [g.m.s. auvto,j] o[ [nt.n.s. o[j] evstin [p.i.3s. eivmi,|] h` evkklhsi,a [pred.n.f.s.]) that which is lacking in Christ's afflictions (ta. u`sterh,mata [ac.nt.p. u`ste,rhma, need, want, what is lacking, deficient] tw/n qli,yewn [g.f.p. qli/yij, synonym for suffering, 45X; also translated "tribulation"] tou/ Cristou/ [g.m.s. Cristo,j]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 24

  512. At this point, Paul moves into a statement of his own application towards the Colossians (earlier he expressed his thanks for them and the resultant prayer).
  513. The hardships, sufferings, and tests he endured in the conduct of his ministry are endured for their sakes.
  514. He was even able to rejoice in the midst of his hardships because of the advantage that occurred to them.
  515. Now that Paul sees the result (fruit) of being a part of the ministry, he can rejoice.
  516. Rather than be down with respect to his sufferings, he now rejoices.
  517. These things he suffered were on behalf of those like the Colossians.
  518. His faithfulness under extreme pressure resulted in their present status in the plan.
  519. Epaphras was the fruit of Paul's ministry, which in turn led to the church at Colossae.
  520. Paul can now rejoice in his sufferings, past and present.
  521. This then should be the Pastorís perspective with respect to his sufferings on behalf of right congregation.
  522. Eph.3:13 parallels our verse.
  523. Paul also relates his present sufferings to those of Christ Himself.
  524. As he suffers in the physical body ("in my flesh"), he recognizes its benefits for them, as well as its contribution to the allotted corporate sufferings of the whole Church.
  525. He returns to the body metaphor where:
    1. Christ is the Head.
    2. Believers are the many individual members making up the body (torso).
  526. With respect to the doctrine of suffering as applied to the Church, a remarkable statement is made.
  527. Being in union with Christ means we share His temporal and eternal experience.
  528. He was prophesied to be the suffering servant of YAWEH (Isa.53).
  529. While on earth, Jesus came under an allotment of sufferings corresponding to His mission.
  530. As Jesus' disciples remain in the world, His sufferings are carried on.
  531. Paul does His share to fill up the predetermined measure of sufferings of the body.
  532. If Paul did his part, it follows each believer has his own allotment of sufferings.
  533. Those who truly suffer for righteousness sake fill up the quota of sufferings decreed for the Church.
  534. Jesus did His part and established the pattern for the Church.
  535. Paul was also established as an example for all believers to emulate (1Tim.1:16).
  536. From the beginning Paul knew he who suffered much (Act.9:16).
  537. Believers carry on the suffering begun by Christ and, in a sense, He suffers by proxy (cf. Act.9:16).
  538. Christians necessarily share Christís sufferings.
  539. Our union with Him involves our participation with His sufferings.
  540. Our entire Ph2 constitutes a tale of suffering.
  541. The continuance and completion of these sufferings is a part of the privilege of union with Christ.
  542. Sufferings, then, are something Paul welcomes.
  543. There is then a quota of suffering the corporate body is destined to undergo before the Rapture occurs.
  544. The greater one's sufferings, the greater his contribution to hastening the day.
  545. There is also a predetermined quota of persons to be added to the body.
  546. The WOG also speaks of a quota (a proportional amount or share) of evil that individuals and nations reach (1Thess.3:16 [Jews]; Gen.15:16 [Amorites]; Dan.8:23 [whole world > Antichrist]; Rev.18:5 [USA]).
  547. A definite quantity known only to God of sufferings, conversion, and evil must precede the END.

  548. Verse 25 Of (this Church) I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God (h-j [g.f.s. o[j, church] evgeno,mhn [ao.dep.i.ls. gi,nomai, "became"] evgw. [n.m.s., "I"] dia,konoj [n.m.s., servant, minister, specialized] kata. th.n oivkonomi,an [ac.f.s. oivkonomi,a, 9X. Cognates include: {a}. oivko,j, oivki,a house; {b}. oivke,w, dwell, live; {c}. oivkodome,w, build - of buildings - structures, metaphorically to edify; {d}. evpoikodome,w, to build upon; {e}. sunoikodome,w, build together; {f}. oivkono,maj, steward, manager; {g}. oivkonomi,a, household administration, cp. Lk.16:24; stewardship, 1Cor.9:7; Col.1:25, used of the apostolic office, also Eph.3:2; dispensation, Eph.1:10; syn. for the plan of God and its discipline, 1Tim.1:4] tou/ qeou/ [abl.m.s. qeo,j]) bestowed on me for your benefit (th.n [ac.f.s.w/pt.] doqei/sa,n [ao.p.pt.ac.f.s. di,dwmai, "bestowed"] moi [d.m.s. evgw,, "on me"] eivj u`ma/j [ac.p. su,]), that I might fully carry out the (communication of) the word of God (plhrw/sai [ao.a.inf. plhro,w, complete, fulfill] to.n lo,gon [ac.m.s. lo,goj] tou/ qeou/( [g.m.s. qeo,j]),

    SUMMARY: VERSE 25

  549. Paul restates what he said at the end of vs.23.
  550. But here he declares that he was called to be a servant of the Church for the discharge of a unique stewardship.
  551. The term "stewardship " is used several ways in his epistles.
    1. Of Paul's special stewardship of the mystery doctrines (Eph.3:2; Col.1:25; 1Cor.9:17).
    2. Of the special dispensation or age of the mystery doctrines (Eph.1:10; 3:9).
    3. Of God's plan administered through BD (1Tim.1:4).
  552. Paul was not just another servant of the Church. His was a special stewardship conferred on him by God.
  553. And this for their surpassing benefit (cf. Eph.3:2).
  554. Paul was fully aware of what it was he was to do and to whom he was to minister.
  555. His special apostleship was to the Gentiles such as the Colossians (cp. Eph.3).
  556. His ministry was to first evangelize them (as God led), and then to indoctrinate them into the things pertaining to the CA (Eph.3:8,9).
  557. The goal of his special office was to take doctrine to all he was supposed to, and to declare the realm of doctrine.
  558. Only when he made his final defense before Nero was his stewardship completed (cf. 2Tim.4:17).
  559. Paul fully carried out the communication of the whole realm of doctrine, enduring every hardship, at the right time and place (Ti.1:3).
  560. Compare Rom.15:14-21, where he speaks of his apostleship (cf. vs.19).

  561.  

     
     

    Paul's Special Revelation - The Mystery

    VERSE 26 (that is), the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations (to. musth,rion [ac.nt.s., mystery] to. avpokekrumme,non [pf.p.pt.ac.nt.s. avpokru,ptw, hide, keep secret] avpo. tw/n aivw,nwn [abl.m.p. aivw,n] kai. avpo. tw/n genew/n [abl.f.p. genea,]); but has now been manifested to His saints (de. [but] nu/n [adv.] evfanerw,qh [ao.p.i.3s. fanero,w] toi/j a`gi,oij [d.m.p.adj. a[gioj] auvtou/( [g.m.s. auvto,j]),

    SUMMARY: VERSE 26

  562. A faithful servant of the Church with a special stewardship, it fell to Paul to communicate the uniqueness of the Church.
  563. For him to fully carry out the communication of the WOG, he was called upon to present the mystery doctrine of the CA.
  564. The word "mystery" stands in apposition to "the WOG" - the two mean the same thing.
  565. The word mystery was used among the Greeks of a secret rite only known to a select few (its prevailing sense in the classical era was a religious one).
  566. In the present context, it is something formerly concealed and now revealed.
  567. In the N.T., the word is used of divine revelation in general that is made known to pos. vol. but hidden from neg. vol. (example: Mt.13:11; Lk.8:10; 1Cor.4:1; 13:2; 2Thess.2:7; Rev.17:5,7).
  568. It is also used in particular of the doctrine of the Church.
  569. The mystery related to the Church God chose to keep secret from previous ages and generations.
  570. No O.T. believers received any prophetic revelation concerning the specifics of our dispensation.
  571. They were not aware that there was an age and a people slated to replace Israel when she lapsed spiritually.
  572. Moses warned Israel that, should Israel sink so far into apostasy, that God would raise up another nation to replace her (Deut.32:21).
  573. What could be lower than the general repudiation of her Messiah and her complicity in Jesus' murder?
  574. Daniel prophesied the destruction and dispersion of Jerusalem by the Romans after Jesus' rejection (Dan.9
  575. Isaiah prophesied very explicitly of Israelís replacement by an unspecified people (Isa.65:1).
  576. Paul applies Hosea's words to the new dispensation (Rom.9:25), as does Peter (1Pet.2:10).
  577. When Jesus told the Pharisees they would be replaced with another nation, they were enraged (Mt.21:43; cp. vs.41).
  578. Jesus simply echoed the prophets.
  579. What previous generations could have known was that a people and age would appear between the Cross and the 2nd coming (see 1Pet.1:10-12).
  580. As to the specific people and the other particulars, it was still an undisclosed mystery.
  581. Full manifestation came with the apostles, especially Paul (Eph.3:1-10)
  582. The nation slated to replace Israel is not one unspecified Gentile nation as might be expected.
  583. But rather a nation comprised from every nation on earth, including Jews.
  584. Who could have guessed it?
  585. This is the central feature (core) of the mystery (Eph.3:46).
  586. Believing Jews are not demoted in the CA. Believing Gentiles are promoted!
  587. The Church being formed by the BHS is the new "nation" of privilege, temporarily replacing what Israel enjoyed exclusively (1Pet.2:9).
  588. We are now the most favored nation.

  589.  

     
     

    Special Privilege for the Gentile Peoples (Indwelling of Christ)

    VERSE 27 to whom God willed to make known (oi-j [d.m.p. o[j, CA saints] o` qeo.j [n.m.s.] hvqe,lhsen [ao.a.i.3s. qe,lw] gnwri,sai [ao.a.infin. gnwri,zw, disclose, make known]) what is the riches of the glory of this mystery (ti, [n.nt.s. ti,j] to. plou/toj [n.nt.s. plou/toj, wealth] th/j do,xhj [g.f.s. do,xa] tou/ musthri,ou [g.nt.s. musth,rion] tou,tou [g.nt.s. ou-toj]) among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory (evn toi/j e;qnesin( [nt.p. e;qnoj] o[ [n.nt.s. o[j] evstin [p.i.3s. eivmi,] Cristo.j [n.m.s.] evn u`mi/n( [1p. su,] h` evlpi.j [n.f.s.] th/j do,xhj\ [g.f.s. do,xa, synonym for Ph3]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 27

  590. "To whom" refers to the saints of the CA.
  591. It was to them that God decreed to reveal this mystery.
  592. This mystery, unknown to previous dispensations, embraces the Gentile peoples (Rom.16:25).
  593. God's sovereign decision was to wait until the beginning of the CA to make known His secret.
  594. Paul was the principle apostle through whom this revelation was made (Eph.3).
  595. The phrase "the wealth (riches) of the glory" refers to the benefits occurring to all who are mature in Christ.
  596. "Riches" denotes not only the normal blessings associated with union with Christ, but the special blessings associated with the indwelling of Christ.
  597. Eph.1:18 has a similar statement which emphasizes Ph3 inheritance.
  598. The riches constitute what it is God will bestow upon the mature CA believer.
  599. The "glory" refers to the source of this surpassing wealth, Godís essence (cp. Eph.3:16, glory = essence).
  600. The mystery is that which enables believers to have such a calling.
  601. The mystery doc. opens the door of maximum privilege and opportunity to those peoples who were formerly "disadvantaged" (cp. Eph.2:11-22).
  602. This mystery makes it possible for God to bestow unfathomable wealth upon the CA crowd.
  603. It is maximized where the full indwelling of Christ occurs.
  604. The aspect of the mystery doctrine specified in Ephesians is God's acceptance and incorporation of Gentiles equally with Jewish believers in the body.
  605. In Colossians, it is the indwelling of Christ with respect to Gentile believers.
  606. The result of having the indwelling of Christ is that the believer has a hope with respect to a share in the Ph3 glory that awaits the manifestation of the sons of God at the BEMA (Rapture) (Rom.5:2; 1Cor.2:7; Col.3:4; 1Thess.2:12; cp. 1Pet.1:13; 1Jn.2:28; Rom.8:19).
  607. Christ is the believer's blessed hope (Ti.2:13).
  608. The question is, what is the indwelling of Christ?"
  609. The doctrine is referred to in Jn.17:23; Rom.8:10; Gal.12:20; Eph.3:17; Col.1:27.
  610. It is referred to in slightly different terms in Rom.13:14; Gal.13:27; 4:19; cp. Eph.4:24.
  611. Jesus taught this doctrine in Jn.15:47.
  612. It refers to BD, the mind of Christ, within the believer via GAP (Eph.3:16-19; cp. 1Cor.2:16).
  613. It is distinguished from the IHS (see Rom.8:10).
  614. The one is the basis for the other (Jn.14:26; 16:13).

  615.  

     
     

    The Secret of the Indwelling of Christ

    VERSE 28 And we proclaim Him (o]n [ac.m.s. o[j, "Him"; no "and"] h`mei/j [n.pl. evgw,, like Paul, Timothy, Epaphras] katagge,llomen [p.a.pt.n.m.p. katagge,llw, proclaim, 17X: 10X in Acts; 7X by Paul only]), Admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom (nouqetou/ntej [p.a.pt.n.m.p. nouqete,w , admonish, warn; 8X only used by Paul: Act.20:31; Rom.15:14; 1Cor.4:14; Col.1:28; 3:16; 1Thess.5:12,14; 2Thess.3:5. Noun nouqesi,a, 3X: 1Cor.10:11; Eph.6:4; Ti.3:10] pa,nta [ac.m.s. pa/j] a;nqrwpon [ac.m.s. a;nqrwpoj] kai. dida,skontej [p.a.pt.n.m.pl. dida,skw] pa,nta [ac.m.s. pa/j] a;nqrwpon [ac.m.s. a;nqrwpoj] evn pa,sh| [instr.f.s. pa/j] sofi,a|( [instr.f.s. sofi,a]), that we present every man mature in Christ (i[na [purpose] parasth,swmen [ao.a.subj.1p. pari,sthmi, present] pa,nta [ac.m.s. pa/j] a;nqrwpon [ac.m.s. a;nqrwpoj] te,leion [ac.m.s.adj. te,leioj, mature - of persons] evn Cristw/|\ [l.m.s. Cristo,j, for positional truth]).

    SUMMARY: VERSE 28

  616. The indwelling of Christ, then, refers to BD in the brain/soul.
  617. When Paul says we proclaim Him, he is saying we proclaim the WOG.
  618. To reach maturity is to have been taught the realm of BD, not just to be restricted to certain truths about the person of Christ.
  619. This verse provides us with a real clue as to what the mystery of Christ in you means.
  620. To proclaim Christ reaches beyond the message of salvation as seen in the expression "all wisdom".
  621. There is much to learn beyond the gospel.
  622. That is only the beginning.
  623. Maturity demands much instruction in all wisdom.
  624. To whatever extent true doctrine resides within a person, Christ can be said to indwell that person (cf. Gal.3:26,27).
  625. The process of reaching maturity (the goal of Ph2) is to have been taught and admonished under sound teachers.
  626. The repetition of "every man" carries a certain emphasis.
  627. None of Christian teaching is to be reserved for a spiritual elite.
  628. John took issue with an incipient Gnosticism that professes a special brand of knowledge for a favored view.
  629. The ordinary people were taught to believe that elementary half-truths were good enough.
  630. John says otherwise (1Jn.2:20ff).
  631. Certain teachers professed to know and teach a higher wisdom than anything taught by Paul.
  632. Those who accepted it and its jargon were regarded as intellectually and spiritually superior.
  633. Paul, in effect, says that we bring all the wisdom necessary to full spiritual maturity within the reach of all.
  634. The purpose of all this warning and teaching is to bring every person to maturity.
  635. There should be no exceptions.
  636. There are no heights beyond the reach of the grace of God.
  637. When he speaks of presenting every person mature in Christ, he has in mind the BEMA seat.
  638. This prospect is held out to all Christians.
  639. To fall short is to neglect to hear and obey the warnings and teaching of one's teachers.
  640. This is a lifelong commitment.
  641. It demands that you are taught and admonished with respect to all the wisdom in the Bible.

  642. VERSE 29 And for this I also labor (eivj o] [ac.nt.s. o[j, refers to the entire preceding sentence] kai. [also] kopiw/ [p.a.i.ls. kopia,w, a strong word suggesting labor to the point of exhaustion. Cp. 1Cor.4:12; 15:10; Gal.4:11; Phil.2:16 and cp. noun ku,pioj in 1Cor.15:58; 2Cor.6:5; 11:23,27; 1Thess.2:9; 3:5; 2Thess.3:8]), striving according to His power (avgwnizo,menoj [p.dep.pt.n.m.s. avgwni,zomai, 7X: struggle, fight, compete - athletics, Lk.13:14, see; Jn.18:36, military; 1Cor.9:25, athletic reward; Col.4:12, intense prayer life; 1Tim.6:12, PT with respect to the good fight; 2Tim.4:7, see 1Tim.6:12] kata. th.n evne,rgeian [ac.f.s. evne,rgeia, power] auvtou/ [g.m.s. auvto,j, |"His"] th.n evnergoume,nhn [p.p.pt.ac.f.s. evnerge,w, operate] evn duna,meiÅ [instr.f.s. du,namij] evn evmoi [l.s. evgw,])..

    SUMMARY: VERSE 29

  643. The phrase "and for this purpose" refers to the statement in vs.28.
  644. Paul expended all his energy to see to it that those under His charge could move on to maturity.
  645. Paul's niche was such that extreme physical exertion was the norm.
  646. He had to work at a trade just to support himself.
  647. His journeys were frequent and arduous.
  648. He experienced physical disorders, including demon attacks.
  649. Some Scriptures: 2Cor.6:4-10; 11:23-28.
  650. Paul knows that all his physical and emotional pain will be worth it in the end.
  651. He cannot guarantee their final evaluation, but he can determine his own part.
  652. Paul will have to his credit those who stayed the course.
  653. What joy will be his and theirs at Christ's appearing (1Thess.2:19,20).
  654. Paul kept the day of his and their evaluation and reward before him at all times.
  655. He also acknowledges that the strength for such unrelenting labor is not his alone.
  656. Paul says that there is a supernatural power that operates within him.
  657. God, through the spiritual gift of apostle, energized Paul to fulfill his strenuous ministry (Eph.3:7).
  658. This same power is operative within all who apply faithfully under their gift (Eph.3:20).
  659. The IHS and the spiritual gift, plus the indwelling of Christ (BD), is the inner dynamics for service under the most difficult of circumstances.
  660. This inner power carries us even when the flesh is weak (cp. 2Cor.12:10).
END OF COLOSSIANS CHAPTER ONE

JACK M. BALLILNGER



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