Table of Contents
The Epistle of St Paul
to the Colossians
The 1st Chapter
Paul an apostle of *Jesu Christ by the will of God, and brother Timotheus.
To the saints which are at Colossa, and brethren that believe in Christ.
Grace be with you and peace from God our father, and from the Lord Jesu Christ. *Jesu: Hebrew for Jesus
We give thanks to God the father of our Lord Jesus Christ, always praying for you since we heard of your faith which you have in Christ Jesu, and of the love which you bear to all saints for the hopes sake which is laid up in store for you in heaven, of which hope you have heard before by the true word of the Gospell, which is come unto you even as it is into all the world, and is fruitful, as it is among you, from the first day in the which you heard of it, and had experience in the grace of God in the truth, as you learned of Epaphra our dear fellow servant, which is for you a faithful minister of Christ which also declared unto us your love which you have in the spirit.
For this cause we also, since the day we heard of it, have not ceased praying for you, and desiring that you might be fulfilled with the knowledge of his will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding, that you might walk worthy of the Lord in all things that please being fruitful in all good works and increasing in the knowledge of God, strengthed with all might, through his glorious power, unto all patience and long suffering with joyfulness giving thanks into the father which has made us meet (worthy) to be partakers of the inheritance of saints in light.
Which has delivered us from the power of darkness, and has translated us into the kingdom of his dear son, in whom we have redemption through his blood, that is to say, forgiveness of sins which is the image of the invisible God, first begotten of all creatures. For by him were all things created things that are in heaven, and things that are in earth: things visible and things invisible, whether they be majesty or lordship, either rule or power. All things are created by him, and in him and he is before all things, and in him all things have their being.
And he is the head of the body, that is to wit (know) of the congregation: he is the beginning and first begotten of the dead, that in all things he might have the preeminence (above all others). For it pleased the father that in him should all fullness dwell, and by him to reconcile all things unto himself, and to set at peace by him through the blood of his cross, both things in heaven and things in earth.
And you (which were in times past strangers and enemies, because your minds were set in evil works) has he now reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to make you holy unblameable and without fault in his own sight, if you continue grounded and stablished in the faith, and be not moved away from the hope of the Gospell, whereof you have heard, how that it is preached among all creatures which are under heaven, whereof I Paul am made a minister.
Now joy I in my sufferings which I suffer for you, and fulfil that which is behind of the passions of Christ in my flesh for his bodys sake which is the congregation where of I am made a minister according to the ordinance of God, which ordinance was given me unto you ward, to fulfil the word of God that mystery hid since the world began, and since the beginning of generations: but now is opened to his saints, to whom God would make known the glorious riches of this mystery among the Gentiles, which riches is Christ in you, the hope of glory, whom we preach, warning all men, and teaching all men in all wisdom, to make all men perfect in Christ Jesu. Wherein I also labour and strive, even as far forth as his working works in me mightily.
The 2nd Chapter
I would you knew what fighting I have for your sakes and for them of Laodicia, and for as many as have not seen my person in the flesh that their hearts might be comforted and knit together in love, and in all riches of full understanding, for to know the mystery of God the father and of Christ, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. This I say least any man should beguile you with enticing words. For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I present with you in the spirit, joying and beholding the order that you keep, and your steadfast faith in Christ. As you have therefore received Christ Jesu the Lord, even so walk, rooted and built in him and steadfast in the faith, as you have learned: and therein be plenteous in giving thanks.
Beware least any man come and spoil you through philosophy and deceitful vanity, through the traditions of men, and ordinances after the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily, and you are complete in him which is the head of all rule and power, in whom also you are circumcised with circumcision made without hands, by putting off the sinful body of the flesh through the circumcision that is in Christ, in that you are buried with him through baptism, in whom you are also risen again through faith, that is wrought by the operation of God which raised him from death.
And you which were dead in sin through the uncircumcision of your flesh, has he quickened with him and has forgiven us all our trespasses and has put out the handwriting that was against us, contained in the law written: and that has he taken out of the way and has fastened it to his cross, and has spoiled rule and power and has made a show of them openly, and has triumphed over them in his own person.
Let no man therefore trouble your consciences about meat and drink or for a piece of an holy day, as the holy day of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days, which are nothing but shadows of things to come: but the body is in Christ. Let no man make you shoot at a wrong mark which after his own imagination walks in the humbleness and holiness of angels, things which he never saw: causeless puffed up with his fleshly mind, and holds not the head, whereof all the body by joints and couples receives nourishment and is knit together, and increases with the increasing that comes of God.
Wherefore if you be dead with Christ from ordinances of the world, why as though you yet lived in the world, are you led with traditions of them that say? Touch not, taste not, handle not: which all perish with the using of them and are after the commandments and doctrines of men: which things have the similitude of wisdom in chosen holiness and humbleness, and in that they spare not the body, and do the flesh no worship unto his need.
The 3rd Chapter
If you be then risen again with Christ seek those things which are above, where Christ sits on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things that are above, and not on things which are on the earth. For you are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ which is our life, shall show himself, then shall you also appear with him in glory.
Mortify therefore your members which are on the earth, fornication, uncleanness, unnatural lust, evil *concupiscence, and covetousness which is worshipping of idols: for which things sakes the wrath of God comes on the children of unbelief. In which things you walked once, when you lived in them. *concupiscence: strong desire; lust of the flesh, lust of the eye, pride of goods.
But now put you also away from you all things: wrath, fierceness, maliciousness, cursed speaking, filthy speaking out of your mouths. Lie not one to another that the old man with his works be put off, and the new put on, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that made him, where is neither Gentile nor Jewe, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarous or Scythian, bond or free: but Christ is all in all things.
Now therefore as elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercy, kindness, humbleness of minds, meekness, long suffering, forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel to another: even as Christ forgave you, even so do you. Above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfectness. And the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which peace you are called in one body. And see that you be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you plenteously in all wisdom. Teach and exhort your own selves, in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs which have favour with them, singing in your hearts to the Lord. And all things (whatsoever you do in word or deed) do in the name of the Lord Jesu, giving thanks to God the father by him.
Wives, submit your own selves unto your own husbands, as it is comely in the Lord. Husbands love your wives and be not bitter unto them. Children obey your fathers and mothers in all things, for that is well pleasing unto the Lord. Fathers rate not your children, least they be of a desperate mind. Servants be obedient unto your bodily masters in all things: not with eye service as men pleasers, but in singleness of heart, fearing God. And whatsoever you do, do it heartily, as though you did it to the Lord, and not unto men, for as much as you know that of the Lord you shall receive the reward of inheritance, for you serve the Lord Christ. But he that does wrong shall receive for the wrong that he has done: for there is no respect of persons with God. you masters do unto your servants that which is just and equal, seeing you know that you also have a master in heaven.
The 4th Chapter
Continue in prayer and watch in the same with thanks giving, praying also for us, that God open unto us the door of utterance, that we may speak the mystery of Christ (wherefore I am also in bonds) that I may utter it, as it becomes me to speak. Walk wisely to them that are without, and redeem the time. Let your speech be always well favored and be powdered with salt, that you may know how to answer every man.
The dear brother Tichico shall tell you of all my business, which is a faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord, whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know how you do, and might comfort your hearts, with one Onesimus a faithful and a beloved brother, which is one of you. They shall show you of all things which are a doing here.
Aristarchus my prison fellow salutes you, and Marcus Barnabas sisters son: touching whom, you received commandments. If he come unto you, receive him: and Jesus which is called Justus, which are of the circumcision. These only are my work fellows unto the kingdom of God, which were unto my consolation. Epaphras the servant of Christ, which is one of you, salutes you, and always labors fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and full in all that is the will of God. I bear him record that he has a fervent mind toward you and toward them of Laodicia and them of Hierapolis. Dear Lucas the Physician greets you, and Demas. Salute the brethren which are of Laodicia, and salute Nymphas and the congregation which is in his house. And when the epistle is read of you make that it be read in the congregation of the Laodicians also: and that you likewise read the epistle of Laodicia. And say to Archippus: take heed to the office that you have received in the Lord, that you fulfil it. The salutation by the hand of me Paul. Remember my bonds. Grace be with you. Amen.
Here ends the epistle to the Collossians
Sent from Rome by Tychicus, and Onesimus.
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