Ark of the Covenant - Bible History Online
Bible History Online
Picture Study Bible with Maps and Background Information

Colossians 2

1 - For I desire to have you know how greatly I struggle for you, and for those at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh;

2 - that their hearts may be comforted, they being knit together in love, and gaining all riches of the full assurance of understanding, that they may know the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ,

3 - in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge hidden.

4 - Now this I say that no one may delude you with persuasiveness of speech.

5 - For though I am absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, rejoicing and seeing your order, and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ.

6 - As therefore you received Christ Jesus, the Lord, walk in him,

7 - rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, even as you were taught, abounding in it in thanksgiving.

8 - Be careful that you don't let anyone rob you through his philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the elements of the world, and not after Christ.

9 - For in him all the fullness of the Deity dwells bodily,

10 - and in him you are made full, who is the head of all principality and power;

11 - in whom you were also circumcised with a circumcision not made with hands, in the putting off of the body of the sins of the flesh, in the circumcision of Christ;

12 - having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

13 - You were dead through your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh. He made you alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,

14 - wiping out the handwriting in ordinances which was against us; and he has taken it out of the way, nailing it to the cross;

15 - having stripped the principalities and the powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.

16 - Let no one therefore judge you in eating, or in drinking, or with respect to a feast day or a new moon or a Sabbath day,

17 - which are a shadow of the things to come; but the body is Christ's.

18 - Let no one rob you of your prize by a voluntary humility and worshiping of the angels, dwelling in the things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,

19 - and not holding firmly to the Head, from whom all the body, being supplied and knit together through the joints and ligaments, grows with God's growth.

20 - If you died with Christ from the elements of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to ordinances,

21 - "Don't handle, nor taste, nor touch"

22 - (all of which perish with use), according to the precepts and doctrines of men?

23 - Which things indeed appear like wisdom in self-imposed worship, and humility, and severity to the body; but aren't of any value against the indulgence of the flesh.

Colossians Images and Notes

The Book of Colossians

Colossians 1:16 - For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether [they be] thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

Colossians 2:15-17 - [And] having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath [days]: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body [is] of Christ.

Colossians in The New Testament - A Brief Overview

Painting of the Apostle Paul by Rembrandt - 1657
Painting of Paul the Apostle by Rembrandt - 1657

Introduction to The Book of Colossians

Brief Summary. Paul had been imprisoned at Rome and received messages about heresies at the church in Colossae. Paul defended the faith by exalting the person of Jesus, and clarifying the true doctrine of Jesus Christ.

Summary of The Book of Colossians

Purpose. The purpose of Paul's epistle to the Colossians is to instruct the believers that salvation is only in Jesus Christ. The person of Jesus Christ must be understood accurately and that "He is the image of the invisible God and in Him all the fulness of the Godhead dwells in bodily form (Colossians 1:15, 19). When Jesus died on the cross he put an end to the civil and ceremonial laws of Judaism. Believers can trust in the finished work of Jesus Christ, our God and creator.

Contents. The epistle to the Colossians contains Paul's instruction about the new life in Christ which comes through a spiritual union with Christ in heaven. This new life produces a Christlike character: brotherly affection, forgiveness, peace, worship and ministry, devotion to Christ, and thankfulness in everything.

Colossae. The city of Colossae was in the heart of New Testament Asia about a hundred miles east of Ephesus, in the Lycus River Valley, in southern Phrygia  Colossae was situated on the great highway which ran from Ephesus to the Euphrates Valley, near Hierapolis and Laodicea. According to Colossians 4:12-15 the church had been established in Colossae some time earlier and was Paul sternly warns the church regarding angel-worship, especially that of Michael the Archangel.

The Church at Colossae. Paul does not name himself as the founder of the church at Colossae, yet since he passed through the region of Phrygia (Acts 16:6; 18:23) which the city of Colossae was a part of, it may be assumed that Paul came there and preached Christianity.

The Heresy. The Church at Colossae was being severely attacked by false teachers. The heresy contained many false teachings which included: a false view of the universe, matter is evil, a distortion of man, sin is physical not spiritual, abstaining from foods and asceticism, a misunderstanding of the person of Jesus Christ and the Logos, the worship of angels, and elements of Judaism mixed with Christianity.

Authorship. The epistle to the Colossians was written by Paul the Apostle and included with his prison epistles.

Date. Colossians was written from Rome during Paul's first imprisonment, about 61-62 AD.

Outline of the Book of Colossians

Jesus Christ Exalted - Chapter 1
Christianity Exalted - Chapters 2
Union with Christ Exalted - Chapter 3-4

Jesus written in Hebrew
The Name Jesus In Ancient Hebrew Text
"Yeshua" in First Century Hebrew Text. This is how the name "Jesus" would have been written in ancient Hebrew documents. The four letters or consonants from right to left are Yod, Shin, Vav, Ayin (Y, SH, OO, A). Jesus is the Greek name for the Hebrew name Joshua or Y'shua which means "The LORD or Yahweh is Salvation".

Colossians Maps and Resources

Map of the Roman Empire (14 A.D.) - This map reveals the Roman Empire during the time shortly after the birth of Jesus, in 14 AD at the time of the death of Augustus. The order which prevailed in this extensive empire, the good military roads, and the use of Koine Greek as the general language of culture throughout the area were among the factors which multiplied the rapid spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Color Map)

Map of Paul's First Missionary Journey (48 A.D.) - This map reveals the areas in Asia Minor where Paul visited in his first missionary journey. Around 48 AD, in the springtime, Paul and his companions Barnabas and Mark were sent on a mission from the church in Antioch. This would be the first of Paul's Missionary Journey's. (Color Map)

Map of Paul's Second Missionary Journey (51 A.D.) - This map reveals the areas in Asia and Greece where Paul visited in his second missionary journey. Paul re-visits a couple cities in Asia, one of which was Lystra where he was stoned and left for dead a few years earlier. He later has a vision that leads him over to Greece and Paul and his companions travel and minister in various cities in Greece (Philippi, Thessalonica, Berea, Athens and Corinth. Later Paul returns to Ephesus and finally to Caesarea and Antioch. (Color Map)

Map of Paul's Third Missionary Journey (54 A.D.) - This map reveals the areas in Asia and Greece where Paul visited in his third missionary journey. On Paul's third missionary journey he returned to the cities he had first visited on his first missionary journey. During this time he decided to remain in Ephesus for about 3 years, and this city was the main focus of his activities and an important Christian community (Acts 19). (Color Map)

Map of the New Testament World - This map reveals the "Nations" within the ancient world during the first century A.D., the time of the New Testament. The map includes the areas of Israel, Asia, Greece, and Italy. (Color Map)

Map of New Testament Asia - This map shows the cities within Asia Minor during the first century A.D., the time of the New Testament. The map includes the principal cities of Asia including Tarsus, Ephesus, and Colossae, and provinces like Galatia and Pamphilia. (Color Map)