Colossians #1 1-1 thru 1-2
Today we are going to start with the book of Colossians. I imagine that this teaching will take many weeks. My guess is that it will take from about 15 to 20 weeks. I think that Colossians is similar to the book of Ephesians. Colosse is a short book but contains some very powerful teachings and some of the doctrine.
I. Intro – As we can see in the very 1st V PAUL is the AUTHOR.
Greek word Pau~loj or Paulos which literally means SMALL
Originally SAUL -- Greek - Sau~loj or Saulos which means “DESIRE” (1 letter change).
A. Date: Probably around 60 to 63 A.D.
B. Where: Paul’s 3rd imprisonment at Rome. However the dates and location of writing might be early, possible as early as 55 A.D. at Epheuus.
1. Colosse was about 100 miles east of Ephesus in Asia Minor.
C. Purpose: It was to correct a very dangerous threat to the early church which was later given the term Gnosticism.
1. Gnosticism contained several characteristics.
a) Observe the Old Testament laws and ceremonies.
b) It was a philosophical teaching (spirituality meant deep knowledge.)
c) It involved the worship of angels as mediators to God. (Col 2:18)
d) It was exclusivistic, meaning those that belonged to this group were the elite.
e) It denied the deity of Jesus. (Col 1:15-16; 2:9)
2. What was in Paul’s mind when writing this book?
a) He sought to show the deity and supremacy of Christ.
b) He wanted to lead believer into spiritual maturity. (Col. 1:28; 2:6-7)
c) To correct some of the error that was the teaching of Body, Soul, and Spirit.
(1) Paul had to correct the error in doctrine that said, “The body is evil and therefore Jesus could not have come in the flesh, otherwise He would have become evil.
D. Colosse was a prosperous area, known for its fertile land (a feast the flocks). It was also known for its clothing and dye.
1. Apparently, Paul never came to Colosse, but some of his converts started the church.
2. Epaphras, who was the fellow servant of Paul, was the PASTOR of the church.
3. Primarily gentile church.
E. We said that Ephesians and Colossians is similar.
1. The theme for the book of Ephesians is “The church is the body of Christ.
2. The theme for the book of Colossians is “Christ, the Head of the Church.
II. Colossians 1:1-2
A. 1st Paul is called an “APOSTLE” Greek A-po-stol-os a)po&stoloj
1. It specifically means, “Special messenger, envoy, one sent usually for a purpose.
a) Eph 4:11-12 Says, “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”
b) To say that the Apostle is the highest or the most important in the 5 fold ministry is a little of a misnomer.
(1) The Apostle does not have control of the Pastor, and the Pastor does not have control over the Apostle.
(2) The Lord is the 1 in control.
c) The apostle brings a special message from God. Sometimes they will also stand in 1 of the other offices, i.e. when they start a church.
(1) An Apostle does not have to start churches. Again, they are sent with a message for a purpose.
(2) It is a different anointing than the other traveling ministries. (Prophet, Evangelist, Teacher)
(3) Only by the will of God.
B. “And Timotheus our brother” V1b
1. Timothy was with Paul here as he often was. It is likely that he was there to learn all that he could about the ministry.
a) Paul spent a lot of time with Timothy. He picked up Timothy on his 2nd missionary journey and now on Paul’s 3 missionary journey and possibly Roman imprisonment, Timothy is there.
2. Timothy’s father was a Gentile and his mother was a Jew.
3. Paul refers to Timothy as a BROTHER, not as a student not as 1 of his disciples, but as a brother or an EQUAL.
a) This even goes to show you that all of us in the body of Christ are equals.
b) 1 might be the hand & the other might be the foot.
(1) When we are functioning in the body of Christ, you are the most important part, just as some one else is.
IV. In Verse 2, Paul says, “To the saints.” The Greek word for “SAINTS” here is a3gioj [ hagios]. It literally means “Holy or Holy thing.”
A. You are God’s holy thing.
1. NIV says, “To the holy and faithful brothers in Christ at Colosse:”
B. Then he goes on to mention the faithful, he’s probable talking about the same people here, but there is something about those that are the called out ones, but within that group are the FAITHFUL.
1. This verse echo’s Eph 1:1 which says, “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus.”
C. He then goes on to say, “Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” (Col 1:2)
1. This is also similar to Eph 1:2, “Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.”