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Colossians

Author: Paul of Tarsus Date Written: 61 AD Paul wrote this letter from prison in Rome to the congregation in Colossae, a small city in present-day Turkey. Tychicus and Onesimus (4:7, 4:9) carried the letter to the church and its leader, Archippus. They simultaneously carried the letter to Philemon. Epaphras had originally evangelized the Colossians after hearing Paul's preaching in Ephesus, which is only about 100 miles away. But now Epaphras is imprisoned with Paul and unable to return to Colossae (Phlm 23). Paul writes this letter to oppose heretical teachings in the Colossian church. Heretical teachers were infecting the congregation with philosophies and "empty deceit" (2:8). They insisted on various religious practices like abstaining from particular foods, celebrating certain holidays, worshipping angels, circumcision and the possession secret knowledge (2:11, 16-18, 21). Scholars disagree over the exact doctrine of these heretical teachers, but it appears to be a combination of extreme Jewish thought and pre-Gnostic concepts. Paul rejects their teaching and upholds the hope of the gospel (1:23). In order to stand against the false teachers, Paul charges the Colossians to "continue in the faith, stable and steadfast" (1:23). He prays for their strength and endurance (1:11), yet he rejoices over the "firmness of their faith" and exhorts them to walk in the Lord, "rooted and built up in him" (2:7). Paul's insistence on the Colossians' firmness and rootedness illustrates God's desire for his people to know their faith and to hold it strongly. The Colossians can only avoid deception if they hold fast to the faith just as they were taught (cf. 2:7). In baptism, they were buried with Christ and have also been been raised up with him so that they are incorporated into the mystery hidden for ages (2:12, 1:26). Throughout the letter Paul conveys a tone of thanksgiving. He prays and writes with thanks to God (1:3, 12) and he also encourages the Colossians to do everything with a spirit of gratitude, "giving thanks to God the Father" through the Lord Jesus (3:17). This important theme strikes a paradoxical note because Paul is writing from prison (4:18). Paul reiterates that our hope is "laid up" for us in heaven (1:5).

Jesus was not just a great man or a super-creature.Therefore gratitude to God for our salvation should constantly characterize the life of a Christian who seeks the things that are above even in unfortunate circumstances (3:1). 2:9). Paul continually argues for the transformative power of the gospel message. we owed God an amount that we could never pay. Paul refers to Jesus' sacrificial death and resurrection. the life. The gospel message. Colossians also focuses on the divinity of Jesus. Paul teaches that the "fullness of God" dwelled in him (1:19. but God himself. For more on Jesus' divine nature refer to CCC 464-483. By Mark Giszczak . suffering and death of Jesus. He calls it the "word of truth" (1:5) and identifies it as the heart of Christianity by referring to the "hope of the gospel" (1:23). He uses the image of a "record of debt" which is cancelled by Jesus' death as it is nailed to the cross (2:14). but Jesus cancelled our promissory note by his blood and so we share in his triumph by baptism (2:15). Because of sin. is indeed the "revelation in Jesus Christ of God's mercy to sinners" (CCC 1846).

Christ. 2 that their hearts may be encouraged as they are brought together in love. according to the elemental powers of the world 3 and not according to Christ. abounding in thanksgiving. rejoicing as I observe your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ. 8 See to it that no one captivate you with an empty. by stripping off the carnal body. to have all the richness of fully assured understanding. yet I am with you in spirit. for the knowledge of the mystery of God. '10. seductive philosophy according to human tradition. 10 and you share in this fullness in him. 6 So.com/showthread. as you received Christ Jesus the Lord. 11 In him 5 you were also circumcised with a circumcision not administered by hand. 5 For even if I am absent in the flesh. It seems to be denouncing all pleasure whatsoever.catholic. 1 For I want you to know how great a struggle I am having for you and for those in Laodicea 1 and all who have not seen me face to face.http://forums. 4 2 I say this so that no one may deceive you by specious arguments. 12 You were buried with him in baptism.php?t=514947 Nov 23. 12:36 pm Join Date: May 18. . with the circumcision of Christ. in which you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God. walk in him. who is the head of every principality and power. 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. who raised him from the dead. 9 For in him dwells the whole fullness of the deity 4 bodily. 7 rooted in him and built upon him and established in the faith as you were taught. 2010 McatholicN Regular Member Posts: 555 Religion: Catholic How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? I found this chapter to be very confusing.

he brought you to life along with him. 20 If you died with Christ to the elemental powers of the world. 14 6 obliterating the bond against us. then. 23 While they have a semblance of wisdom in rigor of devotion and self-abasement (and) severity to the body. they are of no value against gratification of the flesh. 8 17 These are shadows of things to come. taking his stand on visions. supported and held together by its ligaments and bonds. pass judgment on you in matters of food and drink or with regard to a festival or new moon or sabbath. why do you submit to regulations as if you were still living in the world? 21 "Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!" 22 These are all things destined to perish with use. 9 inflated without reason by his fleshly mind. 2:36 pm Matorin Join Date: June 3. 2010 . they accord with human precepts and teachings. which was opposed to us. but this seems to be saying do away with the world altogether. with its legal claims. I know that the Church teaches moderation. the reality belongs to Christ. 7 16 Let no one.13 And even when you were dead (in) transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh. 15 despoiling the principalities and the powers. 18 Let no one disqualify you. '10. he also removed it from our midst. delighting in self-abasement and worship of angels. McatholicN View Public Profile Find all posts by McatholicN #2 Nov 23. 19 and not holding closely to the head. leading them away in triumph by it. from whom the whole body. having forgiven us all our transgressions. he made a public spectacle of them. nailing it to the cross. achieves the growth that comes from God.

Catholics would say no. seductive philosophy according to human tradition. '10. then. If you died with Christ to the elemental powers of the world. they are of no value against gratification of the flesh. Let no one. 2010 McatholicN Regular Member Posts: 555 Religion: Catholic . according to the elemental powers of the world and not according to Christ. but should we interpret this more modernly? Most Evangelicals would say yes. 2:58 pm Join Date: May 18. that essentially Paul is speaking out against penance here. that rules like abstaining from meat on Fridays. they accord with human precepts and teachings. mandatory fasting during Lent. These are shadows of things to come. Matorin View Public Profile Find all posts by Matorin #3 Nov 23. that Evangelicals are misinterpreting this and that he's talking about something else. etc.New Member Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Posts: 98 What? "See to it that no one captivate you with an empty. pass judgment on you in matters of food and drink or with regard to a festival or new moon or sabbath. This specifically is Paul talking about the Mosaic Law. the reality belongs to Christ. why do you submit to regulations as if you were still living in the world? ((What are these regulations? It's what he was just talking about: "Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!" )) These are all things destined to perish with use. While they have a semblance of wisdom in rigor of devotion and self-abasement (and) severity to the body.

Paul had probably heard from Epaphras. The main outlines of their errors are.htm Why written "Colossians was written as a warning against certain false teachers. which . McatholicN View Public Profile Find all posts by McatholicN #4 Nov 23. III. Judaizing Christians.Revert Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Have you checked New Advent? http://www. Epicureans by St. I. Clement of Alexandria. They have also been called Chaldean magicians.org/cathen/04131b. his "fellow-prisoner" and the founder of the Church of the Colossians. 2010 Barbkw Banned Posts: 5. Introduction. or varying combinations of all these (see Jacquier. The most diverse opinions have been held regarding these seducers. heathen followers of Pythagoras by Grotius. 316.Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? So is this saying the opposite of what I thought? This chapter is confusing me. Ebionites. Cornely.newadvent. Histoire. 514). Essenes. Jews by Eichhorn. stated with sufficient clearness in the Epistle.927 Religion: Cradle Catholic . '10. Cabbalists. about whom St. Gnostics. They were called philosophers by Tertullian. however. 3:10 pm Join Date: August 18.

says there was an ancient heresy of some who said that we should not call on Christ for help or access to God. Abbott (Eph. heat. at that time. . 2-13. cold. but only the philosophy of those false teachers (Hort. who required to be taught the superiority of Christ. would place Christ high above the angels. and Coloss. hail. Col. whom they regarded as equal or superior to Christ. Dr. but on the angels. . Here. days of the year. seasons months. in the two books just mentioned. . etc. 268): "Zonaras . Jud.. . (3) Under the false pretence of humility they inculcated the worship (threskeia) of angels.. however. and there can be no doubt that it was applied so in Coloss. winds. a candid nonCatholic scholar. p. and Coloss. many Jews held that all material things had special angels.K. that the words of the Epistle against the superstitious worship of angels cannot be taken as condemning the Catholic invocation of angels. T. Jerome that all these errors were of Jewish origin. It may be noted in passing. This latter view. The best modern commentators. and therefore cannot have been that of Colossians.g. the Testament of the Twelve Patriarchs. e. . frost. new moons. 248) says that "the term properly used of the elements ruled by these spirits might readily be applied to the spirits themselves. The Essenes held the most exaggerated ideas on Sabbath observance and external purism. has a very pertinent passage which bears on this point (Eph. Lightfoot." .. clouds etc.contains a two fold refutation of them: first. and they appear to have employed the names of the angels for magical purposes (Bel. Abbott. by a direct statement of the true doctrine on Christ. by a direct polemic in which is laid bare the hollowness of what they put forth under the specious name of "philosophy". In the Book of Henoch and the Book of Jubilees we read of angels of the stars. as. 118). philosophy in general is not condemned. At any rate angels play an important part in most of early apocryphal books of the Jews. but according to the "tradition of men". some of its details are given in 16-23: (1) The false teachers wished to introduce the observance of Sabbaths. Catholic and non-Catholic agree with St. Josephus and Philo apply the word "philosophy" to Jewish teaching. Jud. by which the very foundations of their erroneous teaching are shown to be baseless. p. and secondly. (2) They forbade the eating and drinking and even the very tasting and touching of certain things. II. This was not "according to Christ". and was in keeping only with the very alphabet of worldly speculation (kata ta stoicheia tou kosmou — see Galatians 4:3). and other such days. ii. and Dissertations). especially as there was no other convenient term". vii. the Book of the Secrets of Henoch. Many scholars are of opinion that the "elements of this world" (stoicheia tou kosmou) mean elemental spirits. Chr.

The statement that the vain philosophy was in accordance with "the tradition of men" is not any disparagement of Apostolic traditions. 3:14.927 . dealing with the errors (ii. 14:33. 23) is considered one of the most difficult passages in the whole of the Scriptures. in Coloss. — See also 2 Thessalonians 3:6." The last words of this verse have given rise to a multitude of the most conflicting interpretations. "Now I praise you. and Peake (Exp. that the correct reading of this verse became irrevocably lost. They have been taken as a condemnation of bodily mortification. Paul himself speaks as follows: "Therefore brethren. and hold the traditions which you have learned. '10. 11:23. the very last verse.. Finally. 2 John 1:12. viz. stand fast. Modern commentators devote much space to an enumeration of the many opinions and to an exhaustive study of these words without any satisfactory result." Barbkw View Public Profile Find all posts by Barbkw #5 Nov 23. Another difficulty may be mentioned in connection with this portion of the Epistle. 14. in very early times. Galatians 1:8. 3 John 13). whether by word or by our Epistle" (2 Thessalonians 2:14). is clearly and completely refuted by Estius (Comm. Haupt. and as an exhortation to it. and not sparing the body. There can be little doubt that the opinion of Hort. 2:2. 2010 Barbkw Posts: 5. "Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in superstition and humility. in transcription.The objection sometimes brought from a passage of Theodoret on the Council of Laodicea. Greek Test. brethren that in all things you are mindful of me: and keep my ordinances as I have delivered them to you" (1 Corinthians 11:2. 18).. 2 Timothy 1:13. 1 Corinthians 7:17. 3:11 pm Join Date: August 18. 2 Corinthians 1:18. not in any honour to the filling of the flesh. 7. Colossians 2:6. of which St. 535) is the right one. II.

homosexuality. The meaning is..and such is its purpose. imposing such restraints. but only one circumstance is divine: Carnal/Secular pleasure (masturbation. humility. All are pleasurable in largely the same physical sense. etc. or to the superstitious invention of heretics. Both do incorporate the body/ies. (Challoner)" Barbkw View Public Profile Find all posts by Barbkw #6 Nov 23. prostitution. '10.Banned Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Religion: Cradle Catholic . under pretence of wisdom.. 3:35 pm Join Date: March 13.Revert See also: http://www. that Christians should not subject themselves.org/bible/col002. God is extremely picky about our sexual diet because he wants .merely the flesh. and spiritually rewarding. physically.newadvent. but nothing except marital sex is emotionally. either to the ordinances of the old law. adultery) is evil because it does not glorify God in any shape or form-. 2009 Anthony V Regular Member Posts: 894 Religion: Roman Catholic .htm "■Touch not. forbidding touching or tasting things unclean. or mortification.Discerning Priestly Vocation Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? One thing you might be confusing is carnal pleasure and divine pleasure. divine pleasure (purely marital sex) is good because it DOES glorify God through joy and procreation-.

__________________ Pray for me. Disclaimer: The views expressed by this user are personal. a sinner Anthony St.489 Religion: Catholic Quote: Originally Posted by McatholicN So is this saying the opposite of what I thought? . the Divine Truth. Anthony V View Public Profile Find all posts by Anthony V #7 Nov 24. Diocesan institution. lover of God. Thomas Aquinas. '10. 2008 Posts: 2. 8:22 am NHInsider Regular Member Forum Supporter Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Join Date: November 23.us to receive it to the fullest and most powerful extent. pray for us. and do not necessarily reflect the views of any Catholic Diocese. or Seminary.

Elsewhere he speaks eloquently of disciplining his flesh to strengthen his spiritual life. I can't swim) Tiber Swim Team Lifeguard Station NHInsider View Public Profile Find all posts by NHInsider #8 Nov 25. 12:14 Crossed the Tiber 1980 (no. and Romans 12-14. It seems to be denouncing all pleasure whatsoever.This chapter is confusing me. I think so. Read Hebrews 12 and 13. 21. and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. '10. __________________ "Strive for peace with all men. Paul is rejecting things like the statements in v." Heb. . but also to eating and drinking whatever is put before him. 2005 thistle Forum Elder Posts: 17. 6:23 am Join Date: August 23.864 Religion: Catholic Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Quote: Originally Posted by McatholicN I found this chapter to be very confusing.

which was opposed to us. having forgiven us all our transgressions. 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 13 And even when you were dead (in) transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh.1 For I want you to know how great a struggle I am having for you and for those in Laodicea 1 and all who have not seen me face to face. who raised him from the dead. 10 and you share in this fullness in him. abounding in thanksgiving. 18 Let no one disqualify you. Christ. yet I am with you in spirit. pass judgment on you in matters of food and drink or with regard to a festival or new moon or sabbath. then. taking his stand on visions. he also removed it from our midst. with the circumcision of Christ. 6 So. seductive philosophy according to human tradition. by stripping off the carnal body. he made a public spectacle of them. for the knowledge of the mystery of God. with its legal claims. 9 inflated without reason by his fleshly mind. in which you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God. 15 despoiling the principalities and the powers. as you received Christ Jesus the Lord. 5 For even if I am absent in the flesh. 7 16 Let no one. 12 You were buried with him in baptism. to have all the richness of fully assured understanding. delighting in self-abasement and worship of angels. nailing it to the cross. the reality belongs to Christ. rejoicing as I observe your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ. . he brought you to life along with him. according to the elemental powers of the world 3 and not according to Christ. walk in him. 7 rooted in him and built upon him and established in the faith as you were taught. 9 For in him dwells the whole fullness of the deity 4 bodily. leading them away in triumph by it. 8 17 These are shadows of things to come. 11 In him 5 you were also circumcised with a circumcision not administered by hand. who is the head of every principality and power. 14 6 obliterating the bond against us. 4 2 I say this so that no one may deceive you by specious arguments. 8 See to it that no one captivate you with an empty. 2 that their hearts may be encouraged as they are brought together in love.

supported and held together by its ligaments and bonds. '10. they are of no value against gratification of the flesh. 7:43 am Join Date: September 12. See the D-R Bible. they accord with human precepts and teachings. 23 While they have a semblance of wisdom in rigor of devotion and self-abasement (and) severity to the body. 2010 LPS Junior Member Posts: 211 Religion: Catholic Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Quote: Originally Posted by McatholicN So is this saying the opposite of what I thought? . Haydock Commentary on Colossians 2: http://haydock1859. I know that the Church teaches moderation. achieves the growth that comes from God. from whom the whole body.com/id213. 20 If you died with Christ to the elemental powers of the world. why do you submit to regulations as if you were still living in the world? 21 "Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!" 22 These are all things destined to perish with use.html thistle View Public Profile Find all posts by thistle #9 Nov 26. but this seems to be saying do away with the world altogether.19 and not holding closely to the head.tripod.

and 16: Let no one. nailing it to the cross. with its legal claims. Colossians 3 is a continuation with the moral part. 2004 Posts: 665 Hello McatholicN. I think maybe it is saying the opposite of what you thought. This chapter is about not being deceived by false teachers and following the Church. which was opposed to us. I don't think it is saying. 11:07 am James224 Regular Member Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? Join Date: June 30.. It's about how to live the Christian life and gives a great explanation of mortification. I hope I explained it so it makes sense LPS View Public Profile Visit LPS's homepage! Find all posts by LPS #10 Nov 26.com/id213. That is how I read this. pass judgment on you in matters of food and drink or with regard to a festival or new moon or sabbath. those are the things from which Jesus set us free! Consider what Jesus did for us in verse14: obliterating the bond against us. trying to force us to follow laws and rules and regulations . he also removed it from our midst. See below: http://haydock1859.tripod. It helps. then.. I would use the Haydock Commentary.html . Barbkw is right.This chapter is confusing me. ""Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!" but rather is saying that others are going to try to tell us those things. '10.

'10. Read Mk 7:14-23 and Lk 11:37-44.James224 View Public Profile Find all posts by James224 #11 Nov 26.com ryanoneil View Public Profile .461 Religion: Catholic Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? When Paul says Do not handle. As far as human precepts and doctrines. and it would be a worse act of defilement to readopt the very practices that Christ died to nullify. 2007 ryanoneil Forum Supporter Posts: 3. . . . lepers. . taste. . you must realize that he is making a sarcastic strike at the Jewish agitators who believed physical contact with corpses. __________________ scripturecatholic. Jesus hurled the same oracle against his Parisees in Mt 15:7-9. touch. Paul is alluding to the Greek version of Is 29:13 when Isaiah railed against the leaders of Jerusalem for pretentious worship. The purity codes have been set aside. . 3:26 pm Join Date: August 29. and unclean foods was an act of ritual defilement.

Find all posts by ryanoneil #12 Nov 26. 4:24 pm Join Date: July 21. ______________________ The Bible in a Verse But now once at the conclusion of the ages Jesus has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. '10. 2009 dtg New Member Posts: 30 Religion: Catholic Re: How should Colossians 2 be interpereted? I think it's pointing at the reality that often the way of Christ and the way of the world are different. Hebrews 9: 26b .

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