Bible: The New Testament

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The Letter of Paul to the Colossians

Full Text The Letter of Paul to the Colossians

I.  

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy the brother, 2to the saints in Colosse, and faithful brethren in Christ: Grace to you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

3We give thanks to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, 4having heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have toward all the saints, 5because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; 6which is come to you, as also in all the world, and is bringing forth fruit and increasing also in you, since the day ye heard it, and knew the grace of God in truth; 7as ye learned from Epaphras our beloved fellow-servant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ, 8who also made known to us your love in the Spirit.

9For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that ye may be filled with the knowledge of his will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10that ye may walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, bringing forth fruit in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11being strengthened with all strength, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joy; 12giving thanks to the Father, who made us meet for the portion of the inheritance of the saints in light; 13who delivered us out of the power of darkness, and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love; 14in whom we have the redemption, the remission of our sins; 15who is the image of the invisible God, the first-born of every creature, 16because in him were all things created, the things in the heavens, and the things on the earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things have been created by him, and for him; 17and he is before all things, and in him all things subsist. 18And he is the head of the body, the church; who is the beginning, the first-born from the dead; that he may become in all things pre-eminent. 19For He was pleased, that in him should all the fullness dwell; 20and through him to reconcile all things to himself, having made peace through the blood of his cross; through him, whether the things on the earth, or the things in the heavens.

21And you also, being in time past alienated, and enemies in your mind in wicked works, yet now has he reconciled 22in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and blameless and unaccused before him; 23if indeed ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye heard, which was preached in the whole creation which is under heaven; of which I Paul was made a minister.

24Now I rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body, which is the church; 25of which I was made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which was given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God, 26the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been manifested to his saints; 27to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory; 28whom we announce, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ; 29to which end I also labor, striving according to his working, which works in me with power.

II.  

For I would have you know how great a conflict I have for you, and for those in Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh; 2that their hearts might be encouraged, they being knit together in love, and unto all the riches of the full assurance of the understanding, unto the full knowledge of the mystery of God, even Christ; 3in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge hidden.

4And this I say, that no one may beguile you with enticing words. 5For though I am absent in the flesh, yet in the spirit I am with you, rejoicing and beholding your order, and the steadfastness of your faith toward Christ.

6As therefore ye received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him; 7having been rooted and being built up in him, and being established in the faith as ye were taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.

8Beware lest there shall be any one that despoils you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. 9Because in him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. 10And ye are made complete in him, who is the head of all principality and power; 11in whom ye were also circumcised with a circumcision not made with hands, in the putting off of the body of the flesh, in the circumcision of Christ; 12being buried with him in the immersion, wherein ye were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. 13And you also, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, he made alive together with him, graciously forgiving us all our trespasses; 14blotting out the handwriting in ordinances that was against us, which was opposed to us, and he has taken it out of the way, nailing it to the cross; 15despoiling principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.

16Let not any one therefore judge you in food, or in drink, or in respect of a feast-day, or of a new-moon, or of a sabbath; 17which are a shadow of the things to come, but the body is of Christ. 18Let no one defraud you of the prize, seeking it in humiliation and worship of the angels, intruding into things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 19and not holding fast the head, from whom all the body, by means of the joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and being knit together, increases with the increase of God.

20If ye died with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, 21"Handle not, nor taste, nor touch," 22(which are all to perish with the using,) after the commandments and teachings of men? 23Which things have indeed a show of wisdom in self-chosen worship, and humiliation, and neglecting of the body, not in any honor, for the satisfying of the flesh.

III.  

If then ye were raised together with Christ, seek the things above, where Christ is, sitting on the right hand of God. 2Set your mind on the things above, not on the things upon the earth. 3For ye died, and your life is hid with Christ in God. 4When Christ, our life, shall be manifested, then will ye also with him be manifested in glory.

5Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry; 6on account of which things the wrath of God comes on the sons of disobedience; 7in which ye also once walked, when ye lived in these things. 8But now, do ye also put all away, anger, wrath, malice, reviling, filthy communication out of your mouth. 9Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds, 10and have put on the new man, who is being renewed unto knowledge after the image of him who created him; 11where there is no Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bondman, freeman; but Christ is all, and in all.

12Put on therefore, as God's chosen, holy and beloved, bowels of compassion, kindness, lowliness of mind, meekness, long-suffering, 13forbearing one another, and freely forgiving each other, if any one have a complaint against any, even as Christ freely forgave you, so also do ye; 14and over all these, love, which is the bond of perfectness. 15And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which ye were also called in one body; and be thankful.

16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another, with psalms, hymns, spiritual songs, in grace singing in your hearts to God. 17And whatever ye do, in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

18Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.

19Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter toward them.

20Children, obey your parents in all things; for this is well pleasing, in the Lord.

21Fathers, provoke not your children, that they be not discouraged.

22Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eye-service, as men-pleasers, but in singleness of heart, fearing the Lord. 23Whatever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not to men; 24knowing that from the Lord ye will receive the recompense of the inheritance. Serve the Lord Christ. 25For he that does wrong will receive that which he did wrongfully; and there is no respect of persons.

1Masters, render to your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.

2Persevere in prayer, being watchful therein with thanksgiving; 3at the same time praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for the sake of which I am also in bonds, 4that I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.

5Walk in wisdom toward those without, redeeming the time. 6Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

7All my affairs will Tychicus make known to you, the beloved brother, and a faithful minister and fellow-servant in the Lord; 8whom I sent to you for this very purpose, that he may know your condition, and may comfort your hearts; 9together with Onesimus, the faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They will make known to you all the things here.

10Aristarchus my fellow-prisoner salutes you, and Mark the cousin of Barnabas, concerning whom ye received commands (if he come to you, receive him), 11and Jesus, who is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellow-workers, for the kingdom of God, who have been a comfort to me.

12Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, salutes you, always striving for you in his prayers, that ye may stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God. 13For I bear him witness, that he has much concern for you, and those in Laodicea, and those in Hierapolis.

14Luke, the beloved physician, and Demas, salute you.

15Salute the brethren in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church in his house. 16And when the letter has been read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that ye also read that from Laodicea. 17And say to Archippus: Take heed to the ministry which thou didst receive in the Lord, that thou fulfill it.

18The salutation by the hand of me, Paul. Remember my bonds. Grace be with you.