t: xq87g_kb Colossians 4

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Colossians 4

Chapter Four

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER

1) To consider the importance of prayer, and proper conduct toward
   those who are not Christians

2) To appreciate the value of God's "second string", those workers in
   the kingdom who assisted key players like Paul and contributed so
   much to the spread of the gospel

SUMMARY

Paul concludes his section on "The Christian Solution" as an 
alternative to the heresies being proposed at Colosse with exhortations
to prayer and proper conduct.  His desire is that they devote 
themselves to prayer with vigilance and thanksgiving.  A special
request for prayer in his behalf is made, that God might give him an
open door for the word of God, and that he might make the mystery of 
Christ known.  Their own conduct is to be with wisdom toward outsiders,
making good use of their time.  This includes speaking with grace, 
knowing how one ought to answer others (1-6).

Paul then mentions several companions, starting with Tychicus and 
Onesimus who were evidently the bearers of this epistle, and who would
inform them of Paul's circumstances.  Special greetings are also sent 
from brethren with Paul.  These included three Jewish brethren 
(Aristarchus, Mark, Jesus called Justus), a brother who was from 
Colosse (Epaphras), a beloved physician (Luke), and one we know from
another epistle (Demas, cf. 2Ti 4:9) who later forsook Paul (7-14).

Finally, greetings are sent to those in Laodicea and the church meeting
in the home of Nymphas, along with a charge to exchange epistles with
the church in Laodicea.  With a final exhortation for Archippus to 
fulfill his ministry, Paul signs off using his personal signature, 
asking that they remember his chains, and praying for grace on their
behalf (15-18).

OUTLINE

I. EXHORTATIONS TO PRAYER AND PROPER CONDUCT (2-6)

   A. DEVOTE YOURSELVES TO PRAYER (2-4)
      1. Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant with thanksgiving
         (2)
      2. Pray for ministers of God, like Paul (3-4)
         a. That God would open a door for the Word (3a)
         b. That Paul would make the mystery of Christ manifest (3b-4)

   B. CONDUCT YOURSELVES PROPERLY (5-6)
      1. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of your time
         (5)
      2. Speak with grace, properly answering each one (6)

II. PAUL'S COMPANIONS (7-14)
   
   A. COMMENDATION OF HIS MESSENGERS (7-9)
      1. Tychicus (7-8)
         a. A beloved brother, faithful minister, and fellow servant in
            the Lord (8a)
         b. Sent by Paul to inform them of his circumstances, and to 
            comfort their hearts (8b-9)
      2. Onesimus (9)
         a. A faithful and beloved brother, from Colosse (9a)
         b. He also will inform them of Paul's circumstances (9b)

   B. GREETINGS FROM HIS FRIENDS (10-14)
      1. From Aristarchus, a fellow prisoner (10a)
      2. From Mark, a cousin of Barnabas, whom they are to welcome if
         he comes (10b)
      3. From Jesus, called Justus, who together with Aristarchus and
         Mark are Paul's only fellow workers for the kingdom of God who
         are of the circumcision (11)
      4. From Epaphras (12-13)
         a. One of their number at Colosse (12a)
         b. A servant of Christ in their behalf (12b)
            1) Laboring fervently for them in prayers
            2) Praying that they may stand perfect and complete in all
               the will of God
         c. Paul bears witness of his great zeal (13)
            1) For those at Colosse (13a)
            2) For those in Laodicea and Hierapolis (13b)
      5. From Luke, the beloved physician (14a)
      6. From Demas (14b)

III. CONCLUDING REMARKS (15-18)

   A. PERSONAL MESSAGES (15-17)
      1. Greet the brethren (15)
         a. Those who are in Laodicea (15a)
         b. Nymphas and the church in his house (15b)
      2. Exchange epistles (16)
         a. Once this epistle is read, see that it is read in the 
            church of the Laodiceans (16a)
         b. You also read the epistle from the church in Laodicea (16b)
      3. A charge to Archippus, that he take heed to his ministry
         received from the Lord, and to fulfill it (17)

   B. A PERSONAL SIGNOFF (18)
      1. Salutation written by his own hands (18a)
      2. A plea to remember his chains (18b)
      3. A prayer that grace be with them (18c)

REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER

1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - Exhortations to prayer and proper conduct (2-6)
   - Paul's companions (7-14)
   - Concluding remarks (15-18)

2) In calling them to earnest prayer, what four things does Paul ask of
   them? (2-4)
   - That they pray with vigilance
   - That they pray with thanksgiving
   - That they pray for God to provide an open door for the word
   - That they pray for him to be able to make the mystery of Christ
     manifest

3) How were they to walk? (5)
   - In wisdom toward outsiders, making good use of their time

4) How were they to speak? (6)
   - With grace, knowing how to answer each one

5) How is Tychicus described?  Why was Paul sending him? (7-8)
   - A beloved brother, faithful minister, and fellow servant in the
     Lord
   - To inform them of Paul's circumstances and comfort their hearts

6) How is Onesimus describe?  What was Paul sending him? (9)
   - A faithful and beloved brother, one of them
   - To make known the things happening in Rome

7) What three men were Paul's only fellow workers for the kingdom of
   God who were of the circumcision, i.e. Jews? (10-11)
   - Aristarchus, Mark, Justus

8) What is said about Epaphras in relation to the churches in Colosse,
   Laodicea, and Hierapolis? (12-13)
   - Labors fervently for them in prayer, that they might stand perfect
     and complete in all the will of God
   - Has a great zeal for them

9) Who else sends greetings? (14)
   - Luke, the beloved physician, and Demas

10) To what two groups does Paul send greetings? (15)
   - To the brethren in Laodicea
   - To Nymphas and the church in his house

11) What was to be done with the epistle after it had been read to the
    church? (16)
   - It was to be read to the church of the Laodiceans

12) What was to be done with an epistle coming from Laodicea? (16)
   - They were to read it

13) What special charge does Paul tell them to give to Archippus? (17)
   - Take heed to fulfill the ministry received from the Lord

14) How does Paul confirm that this epistle was from him? (18)
   - By writing his name in his own hand

15) What final request does Paul ask of the Colossians? (18)
   - Remember my chains

16) What final prayer does Paul offer in behalf of the brethren? (18)
   - Grace be with you

Colossians 4

[Col 4:1-18 NASB] 1 Masters, grant to your slaves justice and fairness, knowing that you too have a Master in heaven.

Christian graces

2 Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with [an attitude of] thanksgiving; 3 praying at the same time for us as well, that God will open up to us a door for the word, so that we may speak forth the mystery of Christ, for which I have also been imprisoned; 4 that I may make it clear in the way I ought to speak. 5 Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity. 6 Let your speech always be with grace, [as though] seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.

Final greetings

7 As to all my affairs, Tychicus, [our] beloved brother and faithful servant and fellow bond-servant in the Lord, will bring you information. 8 [For] I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know about our circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts; 9 and with him Onesimus, [our] faithful and beloved brother, who is one of your [number.] They will inform you about the whole situation here. 10 Aristarchus, my fellow prisoner, sends you his greetings; and [also] Barnabas's cousin Mark (about whom you received instructions; if he comes to you, welcome him); 11 and [also] Jesus who is called Justus; these are the only fellow workers for the kingdom of God who are from the circumcision, and they have proved to be an encouragement to me. 12 Epaphras, who is one of your number, a bondslave of Jesus Christ, sends you his greetings, always laboring earnestly for you in his prayers, that you may stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God. 13 For I testify for him that he has a deep concern for you and for those who are in Laodicea and Hierapolis. 14 Luke, the beloved physician, sends you his greetings, and [also] Demas. 15 Greet the brethren who are in Laodicea and also Nympha and the church that is in her house.

Closing exhortations and blessing

16 When this letter is read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans; and you, for your part read my letter [that is coming] from Laodicea. 17 Say to Archippus, "Take heed to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you may fulfill it." 18 I, Paul, write this greeting with my own hand. Remember my imprisonment. Grace be with you.

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