Text: Colossians 1:1–14 [ESV]
Four Ways Paul Expresses His Appreciation:
- An affectionate greeting.
“1Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, 2 To the saints and faithful brothers [and sisters] in Christ at Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father.” (Colossians 1:1-2) [ESV]
Important points in Paul’s opening greeting:
- Paul and Timothy are writing this letter.
- This letter was written to fellow believers.
- This letter was written to believers in Colossae.
- A sincere appreciation.
“3 We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, 5 because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, 6 which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth, 7 just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf 8 and has made known to us your love in the Spirit.” (Colossians 1:3-8) [ESV]
Paul has heard two things about the believers in Colossae:
- Their faith in Jesus Christ is noticeable and noteworthy.
- Their love for the saints in the church is known.
One point we are going to see again and again in Colossians is this pairing of actions with our faith in Jesus Christ.
- An affirming prayer.
“9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.” (Colossians 1:9-12) [ESV]
- As our knowledge of God increases, so too will our good works. (vv. 9 & 10)
- Being filled with this knowledge is to be strengthened. (v. 11)
- The wisdom and knowledge of God should produce joyful thanksgiving to God. (v. 12)
- An assured promise.
“13 He had delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:13-14)[ESV]