(1) From Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, (2) to God’s holy people in the city of Colossae, the faithful believers in Christ. May God our Father bless you with grace and peace!
The Gospel in Colossae
(3) We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you (4) because we have heard about your faith in Jesus Christ and the love that you have for all of God’s holy people, (5) your faith and love that spring forth from the hope stored up (reserved) for you in heaven, which you have heard about in the true message of the gospel (good news) of Christ (6) that has come to you.
Just as the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world (Roman empire), so it has also been growing among you since the first day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth. (7) You learned about the gospel of Christ from Epaphras, who is our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, (8) and has told us about your love in the Holy Spirit.
Prayer for the Colossian Church
(9) For this reason, from the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding given by the Holy Spirit, (10) so that you will live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way—producing abundant fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, (11) being strengthened with all the power that comes from God’s glorious might, so that you will have great endurance and patience, (12) and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the blessed inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.
(13) For he has rescued us from the power (dominion) of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, (14) in whom we have received redemption—which is the forgiveness of our sins.
It is All About Jesus Christ
(15) Jesus Christ is the exact image of the invisible God, the first one (firstborn) over all creation. (16) For through him all things were created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible—whether thrones, dominions, principalities (rulers) and authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.
(17) Jesus existed before all things, and in him all things are held together. (18) And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning and the first one (firstborn) to rise from the dead, so that he would have supremacy over all things. (19) For God was pleased to have all his fullness (divinity) dwell in him, (20) and through him to reconcile (unite) to himself all things on earth or in heaven, by making peace through his blood that he shed on the cross.
Reconciled to God in Jesus Christ
(21) You were once separated from God and were hostile in your minds because of the evil life you lived. (22) But now God has reconciled you by the death of Christ’s body on the cross to present you holy in his sight, blameless and innocent—(23) if you continue in your faith, secure and strong, and do not wander away from the hope held out in the gospel (good news) of Christ. This is the gospel message that you heard and that has been proclaimed in all of creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister (servant).
Jesus Christ in You is the Hope of Glory
(24) Now I rejoice in my suffering for you, because I am completing in my flesh what is still lacking in Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body—which is the church. (25) I have become a minister (servant) of the church by the commission (stewardship) God gave me to present to you the entire word of God—(26) the mystery that was kept hidden for ages and generations (during the Old Testament), but has now (in the New Testament) been revealed to the Lord’s people. (27) To them God chose to make known among the nations the glorious treasures of this mystery—which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
(28) We proclaim Christ, warning and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we can present everyone fully mature in Christ. (29) I labor hard toward this goal, struggling with all the energy of Christ that so powerfully works within me.