Parkview CHURCH of CHRIST

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COLOSSIANS: INTRODUCTION



Introduction:


1. Colossae was located in Asia Minor on the Lycus River approximately 120 miles southeast of Ephesus.  It formed a triangle with Hierapolis, 13 miles to the northwest, and Laodicea, 10 miles more to the west of Colossae.


2. Colossae was known for a wool dyed purple, known as Colossinus.


3. Paul probably did not preach personally in Colossae, but helped establish the church there through men such as Epaphras who probably heard in the two years Paul preached in Ephesus (Acts 19:10).

a. Paul “heard” of their faith (1:4, 9).

b. Some had not seen Paul’s face (2:1).

c. Epaphras had proclaimed he message of God’s grace to the Colossians (1:6-7).

d. Archippus was left to work with the church (4:17).


4. AUTHOR: “Paul,” “I Paul,” “me Paul”

a. Three times the writer calls himself Paul (1:1, 23; 4:18).

b. Like the Epistles of Philippians, Philemon, I and 2 Thessalonians, Timothy joins in the salutations.


5. DATE AND PLACE OF WRITING: A.D. 62

a. Written from a prison in Rome (4:10, 18; Acts 28:30-31)

b. The other letters written at this time were Ephesians, Philippians and Philemon.


6. THEME AND PURPOSE OF THE BOOK:

a. Theme: The Pre-Eminence of Christ

b. Purpose:

(1). To fill the saints with the knowledge and spiritual understanding that is found only in Christ (1:9).  

(2). To encourage the saints to walk worthily of the Lord (1:10)

(3). To guard the saints from a false, but intellectually appealing doctrine (2:8-23).


7. ARRANGEMENT OF THE BOOK: AN OUTLINE


I.    Introductory salutations and thanksgiving for the saints’ faith (1:1-8)


II.  The Completeness Enjoyed By Knowing The Fullness Of Christ (Chapters 1-2)

A. Paul prays for saints to be filled with Christ, and manifest the fruits of saving knowledge (1:9-14)

B. Know Christ as Creator (1:15-18)

C. Know Christ as Redeemer (1:9-23)

D. Know Christ as Head of the Church (1:24-2:7)

E. Know Christ as expressing God fully (2:8-23)


III. The Worthy Walk (Chapters 3-4)

A. Walking as individuals alive from the dead (3:1-11)

B. Walking with brethren (3:12-17)

C. Walking as families (3:18-21)

D. Walking as servants and masters (3:22-4:1)

E. Walking before the world (4:1-6)


IV. Personal Greetings (4:7-18)