Colossians 1:1-2


Colossians 1

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,
2 To God's holy people in Colossae, the faithful brothers and sisters* in Christ:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.





There is a lot going on in these two opening verses.  If you are anything like me, I will often skim over the opening of books in the New Testament.  They all say basically the same thing, Hello I'm Paul (or James, Peter, ect.)  I want to get to the point as fast as I can and the long greetings just slow me down.  

This week I'm going to just look at the opening verses.  Taking it slow by looking deeply into these words, provides great insight in how we as Christians should greet one another and how we should identify ourselves.

Identity: 

 

1.  Normally we say hello, before we say who we are, not Paul!  Paul first identifies himself (and Timothy) as an apostle before he says hello.  Where does the most important information go?  First not last.  He is compelled to first and foremost identify himself as a follower of his Lord and Savior before he says anything else. That is the most important thing on his mind and the most essential piece of information. 

How do you identify yourself?  Mother, Wife, Employee, Sister, Daughter, Friend, but I don't often introduce myself as an apostle of Christ Jesus.


2.  Paul is an apostle by the will of God.  Clearly he knows that God's will is the only reason he is a follower.  (let me be clear I am not talking of predestination)  Paul's loving Father had a plan for his life, and knew it was by not by what he (Paul) did, but by the will of God that allowed him to spread the good news. 

Just as God had a plan for Paul He also has a plan for you.

3.  They are brothers with others of the Faith. *(From the Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God's family; also in 4:15.)  The identity of being in a family is interesting.  You don't have to like your family, but on some level you do love them.  You belong with them, good or bad, and are forever identified as being a part of that family.  

Our bothers and sisters in Christ might not be who we would choose as friends, but we should treat them like part of the family.

Greeting: 

 

1.  He doesn't just say the Church, but to God's holy people and faithful in Christ.  Paul builds them up.  He could have called them sinners and unworthy, because we all are (and he has some big things to talk to them about later!) but no he chooses to edify the church and praise them for the work they have doing.

Do you encourage other believers when you great them?


2.  Then a blessing and greeting to conclude the opening - Grace and peace to you from God our Father.   Paul has said who he is and how great his bothers and sisters are and now he is finally saying hello, but he doesn't just say hey.  He blesses them with his greeting.  This is a way to to prepare their hearts for the words to follow.  It is good to pray before we read scripture so that our hearts and minds are ready to receive the instruction.


Do you take the time to greet other Christians with love and attention?


Wow, did you know so much could be gained from reading an opening line?  I'm so excited to be reading this book of the Bible with you and sharing some of my understanding.  I hope you join me next week for verses 3 and 4.  

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