Colossians

Colossians

WHEN THE APOSTLE Paul spent three years at Ephesus (Acts 20), the Gospel spread inland to such towns as Laodicea and Colosse (in what is modern Turkey), and congregations of believers were formed. While Paul was a prisoner in Rome, he learned from Epaphroditus of problems which had arisen among believers at Colosse (Colossians 1:7). So he sent this Letter via Tychicus and Onesimus (4:7–9) to the ‘brothers in Christ’ (1:2), encouraging them to ‘continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard’ (1:23) and to beware of ‘philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition’ (2:8). The main problems at Colosse arose from Judaisers (Jews who insisted that Christians must follow the Law of Moses) and Gnostics (adherents of a Greek philosophy which valued special knowledge and experience). Paul rebuked those Jews who were still preoccupied with the Law of