Colossians Chapter 4

April 4, 2013

This Preaching in Shorts Bible study is on Colossians. Each chapter is read verse by verse with the major points highlighted and discussed.

You can listen to the study by clicking here

Colossians 4:1-18 (NIV)
1 Masters, provide your slaves with what is right and fair, because you know that you also have a Master in heaven. 2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. 7 Tychicus will tell you all the news about me. He is a dear brother, a faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord. 8 I am sending him to you for the express purpose that you may know about our circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts. 9 He is coming with Onesimus, our faithful and dear brother, who is one of you. They will tell you everything that is happening here. 10 My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.) 11 Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews among my fellow workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me. 12 Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. 13 I vouch for him that he is working hard for you and for those at Laodicea and Hierapolis. 14 Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings. 15 Give my greetings to the brothers at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house. 16 After this letter has been read to you, see that it is also read in the church of the Laodiceans and that you in turn read the letter from Laodicea. 17 Tell Archippus: “See to it that you complete the work you have received in the Lord.” 18 I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.

Colossians 4:1

Verse 1 ties in to chapter 3 and reminds us that a life of holiness is not about what role or position we have in life, it is understanding that every relationship providesd an opportunity for us to walk out our lives in holiness. A life which was modeled for us by Jesus in the way that he loved people.

Colossians 4:2-6

The naturally supernatural life that Paul describes in Colossians can only take place as we are connected to the source. Paul emphasizes the importance of prayer in our lives in Christ. We need to connect with and depend on the Lord ourselves, and encourage others to focus on Him.
We are going to talk more about this in just a moment.

Colossians 4:7-18

Paul finishes the letter with a greeting to his friends.

Since Paul emphasizes the importance of prayer I thought we should spend a few minutes on the subject.

Colossians 4:2 (NIV)
2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

Matthew 6:9-13 (NIV)
9 “This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’

There are two sets of petitions in what is often called the Lord’s Prayer. Actually, it is a model for the disciples to use in their prayers. The first set, petitions one and two, are concerned with the establishment of God’s purpose on a cosmic scale. The second set, composed of the last three petitions, regards the personal needs of the disciples. All five petitions are imperatives. Remember, the basic background of the teaching of Jesus is that of the invasion of God’s rule into the kingdom of Evil One. This provides an adequate key for understanding what Jesus is teaching. The first petition is the hallowing of God’s name, which means not only reverence and honor given to God, but also to glorify him by obeying his commands. Let your name be hallowed. We can speak to God about allowing us to act in such a manner that his reputation is not slandered.

The second petition is that God’s Kingdom would come and be practiced on earth as it is in heaven. At some point in past time, the Evil One was cast out of heaven along with a host of beings. The war which arose in heaven had been cast down to earth. Jesus was teaching his disciples and us to ask the Father: “Just as you have expelled Satan from heaven, establishing your rule there, that you continue to bring about that same rule on earth.” Everything was now all right in heaven, the Evil One was cast out—now the battle continues on earth.

Let your kingdom come, your will be done. Pray for God’s Rule in our life, work, children, family, recreation.

The third petition comes in verse 11. Give us today our daily bread… This unfortunately is an inadequate translation. It could better read, …Give us today the bread of tomorrow….

Give us today the bread of tomorrow. We can pray for the specifics which we need in our lives. We can pray for spiritual, emotional, physical, financial and social needs.

The fourth petition is …forgive us our debts as we have forgiven our debtors. This is a prayer for the forgiveness of sins. This is the arena to pray for forgiveness of our sins.

The fifth petition is …And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Here again a better translation could be: Do not let us succumb to the attack of the evil one, but deliver us from the evil one and his attacks.

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