Colossians 03


 
contents

Background




B.1  General

The map below gives an idea of the location of the churches in Asia  Minor at the time of the NT.

 Colossae was about 100miles East of Ephesus, and one of three cities in the  Lycus valley. The other cities being Laodecia and Hierapolis. Although Colossae had been a large town by the time of the NT it was small with a cosmopolitan population This meant that it had many cultures and religions there.



map asia minor


We note that Paul instructed the Colossian Christians to send the letter to Laodeceans so they could read it and they to read the Laodecean letter Col.4:16. The error seemed to have been among the Laodeaceans as well Col.2:1.

The letter to the Laodiceans is lost to us-- unless it was a copy of the Ephesians letter. Academics have suggested that, from internal evidence,  the Ephesian letter was in fact  a circular letter to many churches. If that be so then we only have the Ephesian copy left to us.


What we do know is that Ephesians was written about the same time as Colossians, Philippians and the personal letter to Philemon. All of which were written during Paul's first Roman imprisonment. That being so we can see, although the emphasis in each letter is different, there are many common  expressions and thoughts in them. This will be  be helpful in our understanding of Colossians. 

B.2 Outline

This outline is an alternative one to that given in the Bile books section.

I. The Supremacy of Christ

Col.1:1-2:3
Christianity is about a person, who is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Section

 

Ref.

A. The one in whom his people trust   Col.1:1-8
B. The one in whom his people are to walk   Col.1:9-11
C. The one in whom we have redemption   Col.1:12-14
D. The one in whom all the fullness dwells   Col.1:15-20
E. The one in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.   Col.1:21-2:3
 

II. The Sufficiency of Christ

Col.2:4-3:4
Warning of  4 dangers Paul shows that Christ is the answer to every one of them; there is no need for anything else for the Christian to live by.

Danger

Answer

Ref.

A. Deceived by false reasoning Walk in Christ   Col.2:4-7
B. Carried off by men's philosophy Complete in Christ Col.2:8-15
C. Legalism Christ is our head Col.2:16-17
D. Mysticism Christ is our life Co.2:18-3:4
 

III. The Substantiality of Christ

Col.3:5-4:18
If the gospel message is to mean anything, then it has to be seen to work in everyday life

Section

 

Ref.

A. In the personal life of the believer   Col.3:5-8
B. In fellowship with other believers   Col.3:9-17
C. In the domestic and work life   Col.3:18-4:1
D. To those outside of Christ   Col.4:2-6
E. In service   Col.4:7-18