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New Testament Notes
The Epistle to the Colossians
The following notes are intended to supplement, not replace, the readings from the Bible and the text book.
Comments or questions should be sent to: Dr. Rollinson.
Colossae was a city in Asia Minor (what is now the west coast of Turkey), inland about 100 miles from the Aegean sea. It was in or near the district called Phrygia. Though the record of Paul's journeys as given in the Book of Acts does not mention him staying in Collossae, it does mention that his second and third missionary journeys included regions of Phrygia (Acts 16:4-8, 18:23, 19:1 - Colossae was about 110 miles from Ephesus).
Paul may not in fact have visited Colossae itself, but the news of Christ may have been brought there by people who had been with Paul - Colossians 1:4 & 7 seem to indicate that Epaphras had taken the news to Colossae, and had then reported back to Paul.
It appears that after the Colossians had become Christians, some false teachers had arrived, and were telling them that they really needed to be circumcised and keep the Jewish dietary laws. In addition, the idea that angels were to be worshipped had evidently crept in from some pagan or mystery religion. Paul was probably in prison in Rome (ca. 58-60 AD) when he wrote to the Church at Colossae. On hearing of the false teaching, Paul wanted to stress that Christ alone was the "image of God" and worthy of worship, and that it was only through Christ that the Colossians had been redeemed.
- Colossians 1:1-8 : Greetings
- Colossians 1:9-29 : Thanksgiving and Prayers for the Colossians to remain true to Christ.
- Colossians, chapter 2 : Paul's prayer and warning for those he has not met - don't be misled by false teachers.
- Colossians 3:1 - 4:6 : Exhortation, and reminder of how to behave to one another.
- Colossians 4:7-18 : Farewell greetings
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Last Updated : July 12, 2014