Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Background on the Letter to the Colossians #3

     As we continue in our study of the Background of this letter, consider the purpose and the timeframe of the writing of this letter.
     Paul works to build a case that Christ is preeminent in the very beginning of this letter. He shows Christ to be preeminent in creation (1:15-18), in redemption (1:20-21), in the church (1:18), and in our personal lives (1:22). There is not given a space for Christ not to be center. As the church should be the body of Christ here on earth, Christ is that Head which directs all that we do through His Word and His Holy Spirit. If we, as Christians, would truly put Christ first, what a difference that would make in our homes, churches, communities, country, and the world around us.

     This letter is written in conjunction with the letter to the church at Ephesus. There are many similarities and contrasts that point to the connection that these “twin epistles”[1] share and develop for our benefit in understanding both the Head and the body of the New Testament Church. 

     Although Ephesus and Caesarea have been looked at as possible locations for this writing, Church tradition and critical scholarship as a whole endorse the position that this letter was written from Rome, along with the other Prison Letters. The overlapping themes and names bring validity to this conclusion.

     The date of the writing of this letter has been accepted as around 60 – 62 AD. The major discussion that appears today is on the order that the four letters were written.

Prayer: Jesus, may I seek to keep You at the center of my thoughts and actions. May I realize that I MUST put You first in ALL of my life. I can make a difference as You live through me today. Amen.

[1] Bruce Wilkinson, Kenneth Boa. Talk thru the Bible. (Nashville, TN: Nelson Reference & Electronic, 2002)

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