The Letter from Paul the Apostle to the Colossians


Paul, apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and brother Timothy, to the holy and faithful brothers in Christ who are of Colossae: 2 Grace to you, and peace, from God our father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

3 We give thanks to our God and father of the Lord Jesus Christ always about you when we pray, 4 for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and the love which you have toward all the holy people, 5 because of the hope laid aside for you in heaven, of which you have heard in the word of the truth of the gospel, 6 which has come to you as to all the world, and bears fruit as also in you, from the day you heard it, and have known the grace of God in truth, 7 as you also learned from Epaphras our beloved fellow-servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ Jesus for you, 8 and who described to us your love in the spirit.

9 Because of this, we too, since the day we heard it, have not ceased to pray for you, and to desire that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will, in all spiritual wisdom and prudence, 10 that you may walk worthy of the Lord, to be pleasing by all things, in every work well bearing fruit, and growing in the knowledge of God, 11 in all power made powerful, according to the power of his glory, in all patience and long-suffering with joy, 12 giving thanks to God the father, who has made us worthy in the part of the inheritance of the holy in light, 13 who has delivered us from the power of the darkness, and brought us forth into the kingdom of the son of his love 14 (in whom we have redemption by his blood, the remission of sins) 15the image of the unseeable God, the first-begotten of all creation, 16 for by him all things were created which are in heaven and earth, which can be seen and which cannot be seen, be they thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities.

17 All things were created by him and in him, and he is before all things, and all things have their existence through him; 18 and he is the head of the body, of the community, being the very first first-begotten from the dead, that he may himself be the holder of the first things in everything, 19 for in him the father was pleased for all fulness to dwell, 20 and by him to reconcile each to himself, pacified by the blood of his cross for each one, be they in earth or in heaven.

21 And you who were once alienated, and enemies of mind in evil works, 22 he has now reconciled in the body of his flesh by death, so that he may present you holy and blameless and guiltless in his sight, 23 if you shall remain in the faith founded and steadfast, and unmovable from the hope of the gospel which you have heard, which was preached to all creation that is under the heaven, of which I, Paul, have been made minister.

24 Now I rejoice in my afflictions for you, and fill up that which lacks of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body, which is the community, 25 of which I have been made minister according to the delegation of God, which is given to me in you, fulfilling the word of God, 26 the mystery which has been hidden from ages and generations, but is now revealed to his holy ones, 27 to whom God wished to make known, which things may be the riches of the glory of this mystery in the nations, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, 28 which we proclaim, admonishing all people, and teaching all people, in all wisdom, that we may present all people perfected in Christ Jesus, 29 to which I toil, striving according to his effectiveness working in me in power.


For I want you to know how much conflict I have of you and those who are of Laodicea, and as many as have not seen my face in the flesh, 2 that their hearts may receive consolation, being bound together in love, and in all riches of certainty of persuasion, understanding in knowledge of the mystery of God, both the Father and Christ, 3 in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge concealed.

4 And I say this lest any deceive you in probability of words. 5 For I may be absent in the flesh, but in the spirit I am with you, rejoicing and seeing your order, and the firmness of your faith in Christ. 6 Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, in that way walk in him, 7 rooted and built up in him, and confirmed in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it, in giving of thanks. 8 See that there be no one who might prey on you with philosophy and empty deception according to the tradition of people, after the worldly element, and not according to Christ. 9 For in him inhabits all the fulness of Godness bodily; 10 and you are complete in him, who is the head of all principalities and authorities, 11 in whom also you are circumcised with a circumcision which is not of hands, as you doff the body of fleshly sins in the circumcision of Christ, 12 buried together with him in baptism, in which also you have been resurrected together with him by the faith of the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

13 And you, having been dead in your faults, and by the uncircumcision of your flesh, he has brought to life together with himself, having forgiven you all faults, 14 erasing that handwriting of decrees which were against us, which were contrary to us, and bore them out of the midst, pinned to the cross, 15 having disarmed principalities and authorities, he showed them openly, triumphing over them in itself. 16 Therefore may no one judge you in food or in drink, or in regard to festival days or new moons or sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of the future; but rather the body of Christ. 18 May no one steal your reward in humility and the superstition of angels, intruding in those things which he has not seen, being vainly puffed up by the mind of his flesh, 19 and not holding up the head, from which the whole body, fed by joints and ligaments, and bound together, increases with the increase of God. 20 Therefore if you are dead with Christ from the worldly element, why do you hold to decrees as if living in the world? 21 “Do not touch, do not taste, nor handle”— 22 all of which shall perish from use according to the commandments and teachings of people, 23 which indeed have reason of wisdom in superstition and humility of soul, and neglect of the body, not in any honor to the filling of the flesh.


Therefore, if you have risen as one with Christ, seek the higher things, where Christ is, sitting to the right of God; 2 care about the higher things, not earthly. 3 For you are dead, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, your life, shall appear, then also you shall be revealed with him in glory. 5 Therefore make dead your earthly members—fornication, uncleanness, libido, wicked lust, and greed, which is the worship of idols, 6 upon which the rage of God tends to come upon the incorrigible sons, 7 among which you walked when you were living in them. 8 But now, set aside from yourselves all these things—anger, indignation, malice, speaking evil, filthy speech from your mouth.

9 Do not lie to one another, since you have doffed the old person with his deeds, 10 and donned the new one, who is renewed in knowledge and the image of the one who created him, 11 where there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian and Scythian, slave and free, but Christ, all things in all people. 12 Be therefore clothed like the chosen ones of God, holy and beloved, the gut of mercy, gentleness, modesty, leniency, patience, 13 supporting each other and forgiving each other, if any shall have a quarrel against any other—as also Christ has forgiven you, do so also yourselves.

14 And above all these things is love, which is the chain of perfection; 15 and may the peace of God reign in your hearts, in which also you have been called in one body; and be thankful. 16 May the word of Christ dwell in you richly, in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing each other, in songs and praises, and spiritual chanting in grace, singing in your heart to the Lord.

17 And whatever you may do in word or deed, do all things in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks as well to God the father by him. 18 Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as it is fitting in the Lord; 19 and husbands, love your own wives, and do not be bitter against them. 20 Children, obey your parents in all things; for this well pleases the Lord; 21 and parents, do not provoke your children, lest their souls become despondent. 22 Servants, obey in all things your fleshly lords, not as sycophants, like pleasers of people, but in simplicity of heart, fearing the Lord. 23 And whatever you may do, do it from the soul, as to the Lord, and not to people, 24 knowing that you shall receive from the Lord the reward of inheritance, for you serve the Lord Christ. 25 But the one who sins shall receive for his sin; and there is no favoritism toward persons.


And as for you, masters, show your servants that which is just and fair, knowing that you have a master, the Lord, in heaven.

2 Continue in prayers, keeping watch in them, and giving thanks, 3 praying together also for us that God may open us a door of words, that we may speak the mystery of Christ, because of which also I am in shackles, 4 so that I may make it manifest, as I must speak.

5 In wisdom walk toward outsiders, redeeming the opportunity. 6 May your word always be in grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you should answer anyone.

7 Of all my matters, Tychicus the beloved brother and faithful minister and fellow-servant in the Lord, shall report, 8 whom I have sent to you in this very purpose, that he may know how you are doing, and console your hearts, 9 with Onesimus the faithful and beloved brother, who is of you. They shall lay out all matters to you which we are doing here. 10 Aristarchus my fellow-captive greets you, and Mark Barnabas’ nephew, of whom you have received commandments; if he shall come to you, receive him. 11 And Jesus who is called Justus—these people are of the circumcision. These alone are my coworkers to the kingdom of God, who have been a solace to me. 12 Epaphras greets you, a servant of Christ who is of you, always fervently toiling for you in prayers, that you may stand perfected and complete in every will of God. 13 For I bear witness of him that he is very studious for you and those who are of Laodicea, and those who are of Hierapolis. 14 Luke the beloved medic greets you, and Demas.

15 Greet the brothers who are from Laodicea, and Nympha and the community which is in her home. 16 And when this letter shall be read to you, see that it shall be read in the community of the Laodiceans also; and the one which was written to Laodicea, that you also read it. 17 Give this message to Archippus there: “See to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you fill it.”

18 The greeting by my own hand—Paul. Keep my shackles in mind. May grace be with you. Amen.

To the Colossians. Written from Rome by Tychicus and Onesimus.