Colossians 1:1-29, NLT
Greetings from Paul
1This letter is from Paul, chosen by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and from our brother Timothy.
2We are writing to God’s holy people in the city of Colosse, who are faithful brothers and sisters*1:2 Greek faithful brothers. in Christ.
May God our Father give you grace and peace.
Paul’s Thanksgiving and Prayer
3We always pray for you, and we give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
6This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God’s wonderful grace.
7You learned about the Good News from Epaphras, our beloved co-worker. He is Christ’s faithful servant, and he is helping us on your behalf.*1:7 Or he is ministering on your behalf; some manuscripts read he is ministering on our behalf.
9So we have not stopped praying for you since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding.
11We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy,*1:11 Or all the patience and endurance you need with joy.
Christ Is Supreme
15Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.
He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,*1:15 Or He is the firstborn of all creation.
16for through him God created everything
in the heavenly realms and on earth.
He made the things we can see
and the things we can’t see—
such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world.
Everything was created through him and for him.
17He existed before anything else,
and he holds all creation together.
18Christ is also the head of the church,
which is his body.
He is the beginning,
supreme over all who rise from the dead.*1:18 Or the firstborn from the dead.
So he is first in everything.
19For God in all his fullness
was pleased to live in Christ,
20and through him God reconciled
everything to himself.
He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth
by means of Christ’s blood on the cross.
21This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions.
23But you must continue to believe this truth and stand firmly in it. Don’t drift away from the assurance you received when you heard the Good News. The Good News has been preached all over the world, and I, Paul, have been appointed as God’s servant to proclaim it.
Paul’s Work for the Church
24I am glad when I suffer for you in my body, for I am participating in the sufferings of Christ that continue for his body, the church.
28So we tell others about Christ, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all the wisdom God has given us. We want to present them to God, perfect*1:28 Or mature. in their relationship to Christ.