CHRIST EXALTED (A)
- The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at My right hand" (Ps 110:1).
- The Lord has sworn and will not repent, "You are a priest forever" (Ps 110:4).
- Received up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God (Mk 16:19).
- By the right hand of God exalted (Ac 2:33).
- Him did God exalt with His right hand to be a prince and a Savior" (Ac 5:31).
- Jesus standing on the right hand of God (Ac 7:55).
- Who was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God (Ro 8:34).
- Raised Him from the dead and made Him to sit at His right hand in the Heavenly places (Eph 1:20).
CHRIST EXALTED (B)
- Raised together with Christ . . . where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God (Col 3:1).
- Made purification for sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high (Heb 1:3).
- Sit on My right hand until I make Your enemies the footstool of Your feet (Heb 1:13).
- A high priest who sat down on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens (Heb 8:1).
- Offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God (Heb 10:12).
- Endured the cross, despising shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Heb 12:2).
- Who is on the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, angels and authorities and powers being made subject to Him (1Pe 3:22).
In this chapter,[ 1 ] Paul reminds his readers that they were raised with the Christ who now reigns at the right hand of God (Col 3:1-4; compare the discussion of the exaltation of Christ in 1:15-20; see charts CHRIST EXALTED A and B). The high position of Christ is a motivation to live the "risen life." To live this life, Paul first lists eleven sins that must be put off or put to death (Col 3:5-11). Then follow ten positive virtues to be adopted (Col 3:12-15). Next are the beautiful thoughts about the word of Christ indwelling richly, about singing and doing all in the name of the Lord (Col 3:16, 17; compare Eph 5:18-21). The concluding eight verses give instructions for wives, husbands, children and servants (Col 3:18-25).
RAISED WITH CHRIST
3:1 If then you were raised together with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
RISEN WITH CHRIST
- We were buried with Him through baptism into that like as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we also might walk in newness of life (Ro 6:4).
- Even so also reckon you yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus (Ro 6:11).
- Has raised us up with Him, and made us to sit with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Eph 2:6).
- Having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead (Col 2:12).
- If then you were raised together with Christ, seek the things that are above (Col 3:1).
If then you were raised together with Christ [if then ye, you, if ye then, be risen, were raised together, have been raised, with Christ].[ 2 ] In chapter 2, Paul related "having been buried with Him in baptism" to having "died with Christ" (see Col 2:12; 2:20). Being raised with Him is much more than just going through a "likeness" of what Christ did. Not only is baptism for the "remission of sins" (Ac 2:38) but Paul uses the death and resurrection in baptism to motivate his readers not to subject themselves to Jewish traditions or human ordinances.[ 3 ]
Jesus "was raised for our justification" (Ro 4:25; compare Ro 5:1). When Christians are raised from the waters of baptism, a new spiritual life begins (see Ro 6:4). In the present verse, "If then you were raised with Christ" compares with baptism "in which you were also raised with Him" (Col 2:12). The "risen life" is a treasure safely hidden with Christ in God (see note on Col 3:3; compare Col 2:3). It is a life in "heavenly places" (Eph 2:6). It matters not whether one's physical life ends in martyrdom or by natural causes. In either case, the Christian's eternal life is safe in Christ.
Seek the things that are above, where Christ is [seek those things which are above, where Christ is].[ 4 ] In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught a lesson on seeking. "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you" (Mt 6:33). In line with this, Paul calls upon his readers to "Seek the things that are above." The present tense of "seek" implies that Christians are to keep on seeking. God gives eternal life to those who "by patience in well-doing[ 5 ] seek for glory and honor and incorruption" (Ro 2:7). Christians "should no longer live to themselves, but to Him who for their sakes died and rose again" (2Co 5:15; compare Ga 2:20; Eph 2:5, 6; Ro 12:1, 2).
A heavenly goal is a motivation to live a pure life (see 1Jo 3:3). By diligently serving God, one's "calling and election" is made sure (2Pe 1:10; see remainder of Col 3). Paul is saying one must not only seek heaven, he must think heaven![ 6 ] A Christian keeps on seeking and devoting himself to Christ. Contrast this to the so-called "spiritual life" of the Judaizers that consisted mostly of voluntary humility, severity to the body, vain philosophy, some "do's" and lots of "don'ts" (Col 2:18, 20-22).
Seated at the right hand of God [where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God].[ 7 ] Christ's human essence was exalted by God's might and power. His deity did not need any exaltation.
SET MIND ON THINGS ABOVE
3:2, 3 Set your mind on the things that are above, not on the things that are on the earth, for you died, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
Set your mind on the things that are above [set your minds, your affection, on things above, that are above].[ 8 ] "Things above" are all the aspects of true worship and acceptable service to God (see Ga 4:26). Included in "things above" are saved loved ones who have gone on, the word of truth and Christ Himself whom all Christians love.
Christians are to keep on directing their affection toward heavenly things (Greek present tense). The risen life is contrary to indecency, irreverence and entertainment that portrays sinful things. With the mind set on things above, worldliness loses its charm. With the mind centered on Christ, false teaching is identified and avoided. A mind set on heavenly things motivated Paul's readers to ignore burdensome Judaistic traditions and Gnostic regulations. He urged them to live faithful, prayerful and happy Christian lives.
Not on the things that are on the earth [not on things, the things, on, upon, the earth].[ 9 ] The Judaizers' "fleshly minds" (Col 2:18) "minded" things on the earth such as eating and drinking (Ro 14:17). They were concerned with "principles of the world" and directives such as, "Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle" (Col 2:21). Even after considering Paul's teaching here, premillennialists and others still encourage people to set their minds on things on the earth such as wealth, honor and power during Christ's supposed future 1,000-year terrestrial reign. This is a mistake.
For you died [ye died, are dead, you have died].[ 10 ] At the time of their conversion, the Colossians had died (see Col 2:12, 20). They died to the world, to idolatry, to Jewish traditions and to the OT Law. They should have left all of that behind. Since they did not quite discard it all, it was necessary for Paul to write this letter.
LIFE HID WITH CHRIST IN GOD
And your life is hid with Christ in God.[ 11 ] Paul had committed his life to Christ (see Ga 2:20). He said, "I know Him whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to guard that which I have committed[ 12 ] to Him against that day" (2Ti 1:12).
What is the significance of having one's life hidden with Christ in God? It implies fellowship and security. It communicates a joyous awareness of salvation, intimacy and abundance. "In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand there are pleasures for evermore" (Ps 16:11). Jesus knows His sheep (Joh 10:14; 2Ti 2:19). He calls them by name (Joh 10:3). He said of them, "They shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand" (Joh 10:28). It is in Him that "we have our redemption, the forgiveness of our sins" (Col 1:14). In Him "all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden" (Col 2:3). Christians are "made complete in Him" (Col 2:10). He knows all who are in Him (2Ti 2:19).
Just when and how is the life of believers hidden with Christ in God? According to Paul, it occurs when they were "buried with Him in baptism." Not only is baptism a burial, it is a resurrection. That resurrection is "with Him." It is "through faith in the working of God who raised Him from the dead" (Col 2:12). Being raised with Christ is equivalent to being saved (compare Col 3:1). In effect, Paul is saying, "If you are saved, seek heavenly things." He expands upon the thought that Christians are saved by grace through faith and that they are "His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works" (Eph 2:10). The life in Christ is one of love for all fellow-Christians (1Pe 1:22). If one is raised "together with Christ" then Christ is his life. He enjoys an abundant life on earth and looks to the hope of eternal life in glory (see Joh 10:10; 2Pe 1:11).
WILL APPEAR WITH CHRIST IN GLORY
3:4 When Christ, our life, appears, then you will also appear with Him in glory.
When Christ, our life, appears [when Christ who is our life, shall be manifested, shall appear, appears].[ 13 ] The only true light is Jesus Christ and His life-giving word (Joh 1:4, 9; 8:12; 12:35, 46; Eph 5:14; 1Jo 2:8; Re 21:23). "Light shall shine out of darkness, who shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" (2Co 4:6). Christ is the life of every faithful Christian here and now (1Jo 5:12). However, Paul alludes to His coming again when He will be manifested at the resurrection (see Ro 8:18; 2Co 3:18; see chart CHRIST'S COMING AGAIN).
CHRIST'S COMING AGAIN
- The manifestation of His coming (2Th 2:8).
- Keep the commandment without spot, without reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ (1Ti 6:14).
- By His appearing and His kingdom (2Ti 4:1).
- All those who have loved His appearing (2Ti 4:8).
- The Chief Shepherd shall be manifested (1Pe 5:4).
- Not be ashamed before Him at His coming (1Jo 2:28).
- We know, that if He shall be manifested (1Jo 3:2).
Then you will also appear with Him in glory [then shall ye also with him be manifested in glory].[ 14 ] The "glorious gospel" (2Co 4:4; 1Ti 1:11) leads to eternal glory. At the final coming of Christ, the righteous will be caught up in the clouds to meet Him in the air (1Th 4:17). Then the eternal nature and essence of Christians will be disclosed. "We shall also bear the image of the heavenly"[ 15 ] (1Co 15:49). "It is not made manifest what we shall be. We know that, if He shall be manifested, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him even as He is" (1Jo 3:2).
PUT TO DEATH PARTS OF YOU ON THE EARTH
3:5 Put to death therefore the parts of you that are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
PUT THESE TO DEATH!
- The deeds of the body (Ro 8:13).
- Fornication (Col 3:5).
- Uncleanness (Col 3:5).
- Passion (Col 3:5).
- Evil desire (Col 3:5).
- Covetousness (Col 3:5).
Put to death therefore [mortify therefore].[ 16 ] Beginning with verse 5, Paul makes a transition from a discussion of doctrine to that of practical living. The order is logical since doctrine stands back of daily living.
The command to "Put to death" is not to be obeyed gradually. It is to be executed with firm resolution, decisively and permanently. It is serious business. In the context of lust and heart-adultery, Jesus said, "And if your right eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out, and cast it from you, for it is profitable for you that one of your members should perish, and not your whole body be cast into hell" (Mt 5:29). Jesus was not speaking of literal amputation but of a repentance just as drastic!
The parts of you that are on the earth [your members which are upon the earth, what is earthly in you].[ 17 ] The "parts" or "members" of the human body on the earth stand for immoral activities committed by body members, including desires of the mind (see Eph 2:3). Most, if not all, fleshly sins have a mental beginning (see Jas 1:14, 15). What is to be put to death is mental as well as physical.
"For from within, out of the heart of men, evil thoughts proceed, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, covetings, wickednesses, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, railing, pride, foolishness: all these things proceed from within and defile the man" (Mt 7:21-23).
Are we to conclude that putting to death our "parts" or "members" means only to correct the heart? That is where it begins but the command involves more than that (compare Pr 4:23). Christians are to "put to death the deeds of the body" as well (Ro 8:13). One reason to be pure in body is that the bodies of Christians are temples of the Holy Spirit (1Co 6:19). Another reason is that they belong to Christ. "And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and lusts" (Ga 5:24). Abstain from sin in both mind and body.
The following must be terminated, exterminated, completely done away with:
Fornication.[ 18 ] Fornication begins in the mind but is consummated as an act of the flesh. It is a sin against the body (1Co 6:18).[ 19 ] Some translators, recognizing the inclusiveness of the word, render it "immorality." It includes adultery (see Mt 5:32; 19:9). Flee this sin (1Co 6:18). Abstain from it (1Th 4:3).
Uncleanness [impurity].[ 20 ] Elsewhere, "uncleanness" refers to ceremonial defilement but, in the present verse, it is used in a moral sense. A person may be unclean in thought or in both thought and life.[ 21 ] "Uncleanness" includes some of the "such like" of unlawful sexual thoughts and practices (see Ga 5:21).
Passion [inordinate affection].[ 22 ] "Passion" is fiery desire, especially lust for sinful activities and relationships. It is a blight of a dark soul that harbors various illicit heterosexual or homosexual lusts and actions.[ 23 ]
Evil desire [evil concupiscence].[ 24 ] "Evil desire" is a broad term that includes all kinds of sinful cravings. Paul told Timothy to flee youthful lusts (2Ti 2:22).
And covetousness.[ 25 ] Covetousness or greed results from a failure to acknowledge, obey and sincerely worship God (Ro 1:21-25). It places one in bondage (Ga 4:8). It is a sin of an ungrateful mind (Eph 2:3). It falls into the category of idolatry (Eph 5:5; Col 3:5).
I wish I could make the print of this page shout a warning! Some Christians are plunging headlong into one or more of the five sins in this list because of involvement in certain television shows, movies and literature! The ease in which Satan presents alluring ideas is so deceptive that few realize they have been taken captive until their zeal for Christ has grown lukewarm and, even then, some deny that their hearts have been evil-affected!
Before baptism, the Colossians walked in the sins listed in verse 5 plus others mentioned in verses 8, 9. They practiced sinning. They lived in it. They kept company with the sons of disobedience (verse 6). As Christians, they had to quit all of that.
What is the answer to the sin problem in the lives of so many? Christians must determine to follow the advice Paul gave to Christians in Rome. "Present[ 26 ] yourselves to God as alive from the dead, and your members as instruments[ 27 ] of righteousness to God" (Ro 6:13; see also 12:1, 2 where the aorist tense is also used in "Present your bodies"). Paul urged Christians to bring every thought into captivity to Jesus Christ (2Co 10:5).
Which is idolatry.[ 28 ] Idolatry is a sin against God (Eph 2:3).[ 29 ] It is a sin of the mind but it may take the form of worship of images, animals, heavenly bodies, cars, persons, over-indulgence in "innocent" pastimes, money or the things it can buy. Covetousness captures the mind's goal-setting mechanism so strongly that God is relegated to second place.
GOD'S WRATH, A NT TEACHING (A)
- Fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell (Mt 10:28).
- He who does not obey the Son will not see life but the wrath of God abides on him (Joh 3:36).
- The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men (Ro 1:18).
- The day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God (Ro 2:5).
- Is God unrighteous who visits with wrath? (Ro 3:5).
- Willing to show His wrath and to make His power known (Ro 9:22).
- A minister of God, an avenger for wrath to him who does evil (Ro 13:5).
GOD'S WRATH, A NT TEACHING (B)
- Let no man deceive you with empty words, for because of these things comes the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience (Eph 5:6).
- Delivers from the wrath to come (1Th 1:10).
- Wrath is come upon them to the uttermost (1Th 2:16).
- A fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Heb 10:31).
- Able to save and to destroy (Jas 4:12).
THE WRATH OF GOD IS COMING
3:6, 7 The wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience because of such things, 7 in which you also once walked, when you were living in them.
The wrath of God is coming [cometh, cometh the wrath of God].[ 30 ] Note that the wrath of God does not come upon people because of original sin. It comes because "the sons of disobedience" have practiced the sins themselves. Does the wrath of God seem old-fashioned to you? Does it make sense to think of God as permissive just because people live in a permissive society? The answer to both questions should be no. Remember God is infinite in justice as well as in love (see Mt 10:28; Heb 10:31; Jas 4:12). Because of His wrath, He destroyed Sodom and the inhabitants of Canaan. His judgment was poured out upon unrepentant Jerusalem (Mt 23:37, 38). It will certainly come upon those who continue in sin (see 2Th 1:7-9).
The Greek present tense of "is coming" suggests that the wrath of God is continually being meted out. Sometimes it comes against men and women on earth (Re 16:19; 19:15) but the finality of it will be in eternity (see Ro 2:4-9; see charts GOD'S WRATH, A NT TEACHING A and B). God's wrath is according to His perfect justice (see Ro 3:26). Would there be any mercy without that? Does not God's mercy imply punishment?
Upon the sons of disobedience [on the children of disobedience]. Disobedience was the practice of certain people. Finally, it became a trait, characteristic or a typical attribute (see chart "SONS OF" DENOTES CHARACTERISTICS).
Because of such things [for which things' sake, on account of these].[ 31 ] Because of such sins as those mentioned above, the terrible wrath of God is aroused against men and women.
"SONS OF" DENOTES CHARACTERISTICS
1. Sons of God (Mt 5:9; 45; Lu 6:35).
2. Sons of the light (Lu 16:8; Joh 12:36).
3. Sons of the day (1Th 5:5).
4. Sons of peace (Lu 10:6).
1. Sons of the evil one (Mt 13:38).
2. Son of the devil (Ac 13:10).
3. Son of perdition (Joh 17:12; 2Th 2:3).
4. Sons of disobedience (Col 3:6).
In which you also once walked [in these you, wherein ye also, in the which ye also, once walked, walked some time].[ 32 ] In the past, during their unconverted state, before baptism, the Christians at Colossae had "walked" in the sins mentioned in verse 5 and others. Sin was their way of life.
When you were living in them [when ye, you, lived, in these things, in them].[ 33 ] The Greek imperfect tense indicates that, in the past, the Colossians had continued to live in sins. Have you ever heard anyone say that a person cannot "live" in adultery? A little thinking will prove them wrong. Paul states here that one can live in fornication. According to Thayer and others, that includes adultery.
PUT THESE THINGS AWAY!
- Put away as concerning your former manner of life [falsehood, stealing, corrupt speech, bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, railing, malice] (Eph 4:22-31).
- Anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, shameful speaking (Col 3:8).
- All filthiness and overflowing of wickedness (Jas 1:21).
- All wickedness, all guile, hypocrisies, envies, all evil speakings (1Pe 2:1).
PUT AWAY ALL THESE THINGS
3:8 But now you also put away all these things: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, and shameful speaking from your mouth.
But now you also put away all these things [but now, but now do ye also, but now ye also, put them all away, put off all these].[ 34 ] The following must be repudiated, discarded, abandoned (see chart PUT THESE THINGS AWAY).
ANGER AND WRATH
- Everyone who is angry with his brother shall be in danger of the judgment (Mt 5:22).
- Put away wrath (Col 3:8).
- Let not the sun go down on your wrath (Eph 4:26).
- Slow to wrath (Jas 1:19).
- The wrath of man works not the righteousness of God (Jas 1:20).
Anger.[ 35 ] According to the lexicons, anger is longer lasting than wrath. A bishop must not be soon angry (Tit 1:7). All Christians are to be slow to anger (Jas 1:19).
Wrath.[ 36 ] Wrath is more violent than anger but less permanent. It is to be put away (Eph 4:31; Ro 12:19; see chart ANGER AND WRATH).
Malice.[ 37 ] Malice is an inner evil quality shown in viciousness toward others (see chart MALICE).
- The leaven of malice and wickedness (1Co 5:8).
- In malice, be babes (1Co 14:20).
- Put away from you with all malice (Eph 4:31).
- Put them all away . . . malice (Col 3:8).
- Once were . . . living in malice (Tit 3:3).
Blasphemy [railing, slander].[ 38 ] Blasphemy is slander or abusive speech leveled against others (Ro 3:8), against God and/or things sacred.
And shameful speaking from your mouth [and filthy communication, foul talk, out of your mouth].[ 39 ] The things that come out of the mouth "defile the man" (Mt 15:11, 18). In this sense, all the sins Paul mentions here come from the mouth, especially shameful speaking (filthy talk).
DO NOT LIE
3:9, 10 Do not lie to one another, since you have taken off the old man with his doings, 10 and have put on the new man, who is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of the One creating him.
Do not lie to one another [lie not one to another].[ 40 ] The Greek present imperative means, "Stop lying to one another." The speech of a Christian must not only be kind and pure, it must be true and without deception (see Re 21:8). Advantage gained by lying or by other fraudulent means is the same as stealing (see chart ONE ANOTHER PASSAGES IN COLOSSIANS).
ONE ANOTHER PASSAGES IN COLOSSIANS
- Do not lie to one another (Col 3:9).
- Forbearing one another (Col 3:13).
- Forgiving one another (Col 3:13).
- Teaching and admonishing one another (Col 3:16).
Since you have taken off the old man with his doings [seeing that ye, you, have put off the old man,the old nature, with his doings, deeds, its practices]. The motivation for putting away the practice of sinning is that, at baptism, the old man was taken off or put off (Col 2:11). Think a minute. If the Holy Spirit had miraculously and completely changed converts into the likeness of Christ, would there have been any need for Paul to write these verses?
THINGS TO PUT ON
- Let us put on the armor of light (Ro 13:12).
- Put on the Lord Jesus Christ (Ro 13:14; Ga 3:27).
- Put on the new man, that after God has been created in righteousness and holiness of truth (Eph 4:24; Col 3:10).
- Put on the whole armor of God (Eph 6:11).
- Having put on the breastplate of righteousness (Eph 6:14).
- Putting on the breastplate of faith and love (1Th 5:8).
- Put on . . . a heart of compassion, etc. (Col 3:12).
And have put on the new man [the new nature].[ 41 ] Putting off sins and putting on righteousness prepares one for the great "putting on" at the resurrection. "This corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality (1Co 15:53, 54; see chart THINGS TO PUT ON).
Who is being renewed in knowledge [which, that, is being renewed unto, in knowledge].[ 42 ] The Greek present participle, "being renewed," indicates a continuing process of renewal toward the image of the Spiritual Creator (see Eph 2:10). At baptism, Christians put on the new man. They then "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" (2Pe 3:18).
How is the transformation into the image or likeness of Christ accomplished (2Co 3:18; see note below on According to the image)? It is effected by renewing the mind (Ro 12:2). Christians may be renewed in or unto knowledge as they learn more of Christ. Translations of the simple preposition EIS vary. Macknight translates the present phrase, "renewed by knowledge."[ 43 ] The renewal in, by or unto knowledge (verse 10) results in the heart improvement of verses 12, 13 (see also note on Col 1:9). The word of truth gives knowledge of God. The present imperative of "be understanding" implies a continual effort to understand the word (2Ti 2:7).
Renewal is necessary because of sin. It is because of sin that the anger of God is aroused (1Ki 8:46). All accountable people, at one time or another, have "gone back" into sin (Ps 53:3). Solomon was not aware of a totally righteous man on the entire earth (Ec 7:20). They had "gone astray" (Isa 53:6). Sin separated them from God (Isa 53:2). Sinners have "fallen short" (see Ro 3:23). They have been "slain" spiritually (Ro 7:11). A leopard cannot change his spots (Jer 13:23). Man, by himself, cannot solve the problem of sin (Pr 20:9). Because of his helpless state, God foreordained, called and justified him by the gospel through the merits of the blood of His Son (Ro 8:29).
According to the image of the One creating him [after the image of him that created, of its creator]. The "image" of Christ is seen in the behavior of transformed Christians (Ro 12:2). They are "transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord the Spirit" (2Co 3:18).
NEITHER GREEK NOR JEW IN CHRIST
3:11 Here there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave or freeman; but Christ is all, and in all.
Here there cannot be Greek and Jew [where there cannot be, is neither, Greek nor Jew]. To the ancient people, Greek and Jew summarized the most important division of the human race. To them these two groups comprised all of humanity. In Christ, such distinctions do not matter.
Circumcision and uncircumcision [circumcision nor uncircumcision, circumcised and uncircumcised]. The label "uncircumcised" designated a person as a non-Jew.[ 44 ] Under the OT, he was outside of covenant and the promises. However, in Christ, neither Jew nor Gentile are disadvantaged. Both share the hope of heaven.
Barbarian. "Barbarians" are simply those who speak a foreign language. The word is an onomatopoeia.[ 45 ] The speech of foreigners sounded like "bar-bar-bar-bar." In Christ, major racial, cultural and language differences amount to nothing. All are one in Him.
Scythian.[ 46 ] Scythians (primitive Russians) were allegedly wild savages. Ancient civilizations considered them to be the lowest humans alive. Some of the members of the Lord's church were Scythians. We infer that the very dregs of humanity may come to the cross and be saved.
Slave or freeman [bond, bondman, slave, nor free, freeman, free man]. Man looks on the outward appearance (1Sa 16:7). God gives more consideration to what is inside a person than his physical state or condition (Ro 2:29). The Holy Spirit makes no distinction between Jew and Greek, bond and free, male and female (Ga 3:29). This does not mean that there is no difference in their roles. The same Holy Spirit also commanded women to be silent in the churches (1Co 14:34). He also instructed slaves to obey their masters (Col 3:22). If the Holy Spirit harmonized these verses, modern Christians ought to accept them.
But Christ is all, and in all. All the Fullness (the Godhead) dwells in Christ (Col 1:19). By faith, Christ lives in the heart of all Christians (Eph 3:17). His body is made up of all the saved (Eph 5:23). The church is His fullness (Eph 1:22, 23).
CHRIST IS ALL AND IN ALL
- Only way believers gain eternal life (Joh 3:14-16).
- Their only true nourishment (Joh 6:35).
- Source of the "words of eternal life" (Joh 6:67, 68).
- The only Savior (Ac 4:12).
- The only foundation (1Co 3:11).
- All spiritual blessings in Him (Eph 1:3).
- No other sacrifice (Heb 10:26).
Verses 5-9 warned against various sins [admonishing every man]. Verses 12-24 contain positive instructions about godly living [teaching every man] (see Col 1:28).
A HEART OF COMPASSION
3:12, 13 Put on therefore, as God's elect, holy and beloved, a heart of compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness and patience; 13 accepting one another, and forgiving each other, if anyone has a complaint against someone; just as the Lord forgave you, you do the same.
Put on therefore [put on then].[ 47 ] "Therefore" looks back to the fact that Christians have put off "the old man" with his doings. It also alludes to the fact that there can be no racial or cultural distinctions in the church. Christ is all and in all. Because of these reasons, God's elect (Christians) ought to become like Him in love and forgiveness.
WHO ARE GOD'S ELECT?
- Jews inwardly (Ro 2:29).
- Spiritual Israel (Ro 9:6).
- Christ's, Abraham's seed, heirs (Ga 3:29).
- The Israel of God (Ga 6:16).
- The circumcision who worship by the Spirit of God, glory in Jesus Christ and have no confidence in the flesh (Php 3:3).
As God's elect [as the elect of God, as God's chosen ones]. The "elect" are God's chosen ones. He chose them "in Him before the foundation of the world." He must have considered the great number of people who would live on earth. In His love, He separated those who would be saved by grace through the gospel. This does not negate free will. Neither does it mean that "the number of those predestinated to life, and of those foreordained to death, is so certain and definite that it cannot either be increased or diminished"[ 48 ] (see note on Eph 1:4).
Holy and beloved. Except for the beginning and ending of this letter (Col 1:1, 2; Col 4:7-17), this is the nearest thing to a personal address of Paul to his readers. They are God's elect, God's holy and beloved (see chart WHO ARE GOD'S ELECT?). Compare: "My brethren, beloved and longed for, my joy and crown" (Php 4:1). Probably Paul did not know most of the Colossians personally as he did the Philippians.
A heart of compassion [bowels of mercies].[ 49 ] To Greeks, the viscera[ 50 ] were stirred with tender emotions. Some versions appropriately interpret the original expression "bowels of compassion" as "tender mercies," "tenderheartedness" or "a heart of compassion."
Kindness.[ 51 ] A kind person is, first of all, gentle. He does not cut another off short. What might have been rude or harsh is tempered by kindness. Instead of impertinence it tactfully considers the feelings of others. "Kindness" in the Greek is more than a gentle attitude that makes actions good and pleasant. It involves actions that are useful. Yes, kindness is usefulness! It is the opposite of "unprofitable" and "severity" (compare Ro 11:22). Elsewhere, the same Greek word is translated "good" (Ro 3:12).
- Serving the Lord with all lowliness of mind and with tears and with trials (Ac 20:19).
- With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love (Eph 4:2).
- Doing nothing through faction or vainglory, but in lowliness of mind each counting other better than himself (Php 2:3).
- A heart of compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness (Col 3:12).
- Yes, all of you gird yourselves with humility to serve one another, for God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble (1Pe 5:5).
Lowliness [humbleness of mind][ 52 ] (see chart LOWLINESS).
Meekness.[ 53 ] Meekness is an attitude toward God that accepts His will regardless of difficulty, pain or persecution. Paul exhibited this trait as he endured suffering on behalf of Christ (see 2Co 11:23-28). Meekness toward others is akin to humility. It accepts without retaliation insults and persecution even from evil men or women.
And patience [longsuffering][ 54 ] (see note on Col 1:11; charts DIVINE LONGSUFFERING, HUMAN LONGSUFFERING; LONGSUFFERING ENCOURAGED).
- The riches of His goodness and forbearance and longsuffering? (Ro 2:4).
- Endured with much longsuffering vessels of wrath fitted to destruction (Ro 9:22).
- That in me as chief might Jesus Christ show forth all His longsuffering (1Ti 1:16).
- The longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah (1Pe 3:20).
- The longsuffering of our Lord is salvation (2Pe 3:15).
- The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (Ga 5:22).
- With all lowliness and meekness with longsuffering (Eph 4:2).
- Longsuffering with joy (Col 1:11).
- A heart of compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness and patience (Col 3:12).
- Reprove, rebuke and exhort with all longsuffering and teaching (2Ti 4:2).
- Commending ourselves as ministers of God in much patience . . . in longsuffering (2Co 6:6).
- You followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love patience (2Ti 3:10).
- Imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises (Heb 6:12).
- An example of suffering and of patience, the prophets (Jas 5:10).
- The patience of Job (Jas 5:11).
Accepting one another [forbearing one another].[ 55 ] The Greek present participle suggests that Christians are to keep on accepting, bearing with and enduring one another.
And forgiving each other [one another].[ 56 ] The Greek present participle indicates that Christians are to keep on forgiving one another (see note on Mt 18:22).
If anyone has a complaint against someone [if any man have a complaint, a quarrel, against any, against another].[ 57 ] Christians may have grievances, charges, criticisms or objections against elders, preachers or other saints. They are to follow the example of Christ and forgive as He forgave.
Just as the Lord forgave you [as the Lord, even as Christ, the Lord, forgave you, has forgiven you]. Willingness to forgive and actual forgiveness are different. Jesus prayed, "Father, forgive them" (Lu 23:34). However, the Jews who crucified Him were not actually forgiven until they repented and were baptized (see Ac 2:38). Does God expect His people to forgive people who have not repented? Are they to be willing to forgive? Yes! But actual forgiveness comes after repentance (see note on Mt 18:15; charts MOTIVATED BY CHRIST'S EXAMPLE A and B).
MOTIVATED BY EXAMPLE OF CHRIST (A)
- I have given you an example that You should do as I have done to you (Joh 13:15).
- Love one another even as I have loved you (Joh 13:33).
- Be of the same mind one with another according to Christ Jesus (Ro 15:5).
- Entreat you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ (2Co 10:1).
- Have this mind in you which was also in Christ Jesus (Php 2:5).
MOTIVATED BY EXAMPLE OF CHRIST (B)
- Take up your cross and follow Me (Mt 16:24).
- Accepting one another, and forgiving each other . . . just as the Lord forgave you, you do the same (Col 3:13).
- Consider . . . Jesus . . . who was faithful (Heb 3:1).
- Looking to Jesus . . . that you wax not weary (Heb 12:2).
- Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example (1Pe 2:21).
You do the same [so also do ye, so you also must forgive]. Jesus taught the disciples to pray, "And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors" (Mt 6:12). "Whenever you stand praying, forgive" (Mk 11:25). He not only taught forgiveness, He practiced it (see Lu 23:34). The same generosity both in giving and forgiving is alluded to in Paul's writings. "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich" (2Co 8:9).
OVER ALL THESE THINGS PUT ON LOVE
3:14 And over all these things put on love which is the bond of perfection.
And over all these things [and above all these things].[ 58 ] Love is greater than the other commands. It is more significant because it encompasses them all. "If there be any other commandment, it is summed up in this word, namely, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Love works no ill to his neighbor; love therefore is the fulfillment of the law" (Ro 13:9, 10).
Put on love [charity].[ 59 ] R. C. H. Lenski renders this, "Above all these things, moreover, the love!" In my opinion, translators who supply the words "put on" from verse 12 are only partly justified. Since Paul begins a new sentence with verse 14, it seems preferable to me to omit "put on" or else insert some other verb such as "exercise," "show" or "have."
Love does not insist upon worth or value in the person loved. If that were the case, God would not love us. Love is active. In the present context, love is that which pleases one's neighbor "for that which is good unto edifying" (see Ro 15:2). Christians demonstrate their love when they endeavor "to work that which is good to all men, and especially toward them that are of the household of the faith" (Ga 6:10; see notes on 1Co 13). Peter implied that people who are born again "love the brethren" (1Pe 1:22, 23).
Which is the bond of perfection [of perfectness, which binds everything together in perfect harmony].[ 60 ] All things are held together by Christ (Col 1:17). Other related heart-characteristics grow out of love. Collectively, they hold the church together in unity (see verses 12-14). The love inspired by Christ is involved in all seven of the peace-making virtues mentioned in the present context.
Paul defines love as "the bond of perfection." Since love "embraces and knits together all the virtues,"[ 61 ] it is the perfect bond of unity. However, it is people who need to be bound together, not just virtues.
LET THE PEACE OF CHRIST RULE IN YOUR HEARTS
3:15 And let the peace of Christ, to which you were also called in one body, rule in your hearts, and be thankful.
And let the peace of Christ [the peace of God].[ 62 ] On the night of His betrayal, Jesus said to the disciples, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives, give I to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be fearful" (Joh 14:27). Every Christian experiences divine peace. "Being therefore justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ro 5:1). The peace of Christ should rule in all conflicts within and without as Christians strive to make peace (Jas 3:18). Even enemies receive the blessing of peace-making Christians (Lu 6:28).
To which you were also called in one body [to the which also, to which indeed, ye, you, were called, also ye are called, in one body, the one body]. After being called by the gospel (2Th 2:14) and obeying it (compare 2Th 1:8), Christians enjoy the peace to which they "were called in one body." Of course, the one body is the church (Eph 1:22, 23; Col 1:18).
Rule in your hearts.[ 63 ] Literally, Paul is saying, "Let the peace of [Christ] be the umpire in your heart."[ 64 ] The peace of Christ is the basis for decisions. It rules in the heart of Christians. It keeps on acting as judge, arbiter and umpire. It settles church problems. Instead of cursing, it says, "May the Lord bless!"
Paul countered religious error by emphasizing the peace and love of Christ. No Judaizer, psychologist, philosopher or guru, without the love of Christ, can be ruler, authority or even justice of the peace in the Lord's church. The Colossian heretics might have boasted that Christ held them together. However, they would quickly point out that He was circumcised, kept the Sabbath and observed feast days. They really thought their legalistic commands held things together. They were mistaken.
And be thankful [and be ye thankful].[ 65 ] The Greek present tense implies that Christians are to keep on thanking God. Paul was always giving thanks (see Col 1:3). He prayed that his readers would do the same (Col 1:12). He wanted them to abound in thanksgiving (see charts THANKSGIVING STRESSED BY PAUL at Col 2:7; PAUL GIVES THANKS at Col 1:12). He urged them to "Constantly engage in prayer, being watchful in this with thanksgiving" (Col 4:2).
LET THE WORD DWELL IN YOU RICHLY
3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly with all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to God.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly. The word of Christ has a transforming ability but only if it indwells the heart. The goal of Christians is to live as Christ lived. They want His thoughts be the moving power in their lives.[ 66 ]
With all wisdom [in all wisdom]. The Scriptures make a person even wiser than his enemies (Ps 119:98). They make one wise unto salvation (2Ti 3:1). This is not surprising since the Scriptures are the source of wisdom with respect to salvation (2Ti 3:15). Wisdom given in answer to prayer (Jas 1:5) "is pure, peaceable, gentle, easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy" (Jas 3:17).
Teaching and admonishing one another [teach and admonish one another].[ 67 ] Is it not the goal of every child of God to teach others? Should not everyone strive earnestly to arrive at a point where he can do so? A passing acquaintance with the Bible is not sufficient. Then let the word of Christ dwell richly within.
Teaching and admonishing in song is to be done to "yourselves." "One another" is reflexive, meaning that when one sings he first teaches himself and then others. This is fulfilled as the congregation sings. The rendition of solos and special music may be reciprocal but it is doubtful that it is reflexive (see note on Eph 5:19). Singing should be primarily a teaching/learning process.[ 68 ] The teaching and learning should be done by both singer and listener.[ 69 ] Teaching and admonishing ought to be done "with all wisdom" (Col 1:28). Wisdom applies to the selection of what is taught. It applies to the manner of singing as well as the thoughts imparted by it. Entertainment should never be substituted for worship in song in the assembly.
In psalms [with psalms, and sing psalms].[ 70 ] Psalms are either OT Psalms or songs like them. The following is from the introduction of Roy Deaver's commentary on Psalms.
"The [OT] Psalms (from beginning to end) emphasize God Himself, God's Word, God's world, man -- as God's creation, man's responsibility to God, the beauty of holiness, divine justice, punishment of sin and sinners. Many of the Psalms are prophetic in nature, pointing to the time in which there would be actual forgiveness of sins, salvation in the Christ, in the Church of the Christ, upon the terms of the gospel of Christ. In Romans 4:6-8 Paul writes: 'Even as David also pronounceth blessing upon the man, unto whom God reckoneth righteousness apart from works, saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man in whom the Lord will not reckon sin.' This is a reference to the thirty-second Psalm. God, through David, in the Psalms, wrote of actual forgiveness of sins."[ 71 ]
Christ puts a new song in the hearts of believers. It was David who wrote prophetically of Christians:
"I waited patiently for the Lord and He inclined unto me and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and He set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he has put a new song in my mouth, even praise to our God. Many shall see it and fear, and shall trust in the Lord" (Ps 40:1-3).
POSSIBLE SCRIPTURE HYMNS
- Rise, sleeping one, stand up out of the dead and Christ will shine on you (Eph 5:14).
- Christ in the form of God emptied Himself (Php 2:5-11).
- Great is the mystery of godliness (1Ti 3:16).
- If we died with Him, we shall live with Him (2Ti 2:11-14).
- Every good and perfect gift comes down from above (Jas 1:17).
- From Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the Firstborn from the dead (Re 1:5, 6).
- The song of Moses and of the Lamb . . . Great and wonderful are thy works (Re 15:3).
Hymns [and hymns].[ 72 ] Hymns were originally praises sung to heathen deities. No doubt some of the identical tunes with Scriptural words became hymns approved by Paul. Perhaps Scripture passages themselves were used as early hymns (see chart POSSIBLE SCRIPTURE HYMNS).
And spiritual songs.[ 73 ] "Songs" may be of any type such as love songs, harvest songs or songs of victory. However, the adjective "spiritual" limits the kind to be used in worship. "Spiritual" alludes to what is revealed by the Holy Spirit. In other words, spiritual songs are based upon Bible truths. Patriotic songs, folk songs and western ballads have no place in the worship assembly. The mention of three kinds of songs suggests that vocal church music may take various forms. Let us not become so straight-laced that we rule out any Scriptural, orderly songs just because of personal taste. The broadness of the command to sing also hints that chanting is not the only type of "singing" allowed.
Singing with grace in your hearts to God [unto God, to the Lord, with thankfulness in your hearts to God].[ 74 ] "Grace" is the reflection of God's favor in the Christian's heart. In accord with this idea, some render "grace" as "thankfulness." Praise that rises to God first fills the heart. One sings in the sunshine of God's favor.[ 75 ]
ALL IN THE NAME OF THE LORD JESUS
3:17 And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
And whatever you do [and whatsoever ye do]. "Whatever you do" includes secular as well as religious activities. One reason for this interpretation is the parallel verse in 1 Corinthians. "Whether therefore you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God" (1Co 10:31).
In word or in deed [in word or deed]. Every thought (2Co 10:5), word and deed is to be done in the name of the Lord.
Do all in the name of the Lord Jesus [do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus].[ 76 ] "In the name of the Lord Jesus" implies that everything is to be in submission to the Lord's will. All is to be in line with His example and authority. William Barclay made a good point when he wrote:
"One of the best tests of any action is: Can a person do it calling upon the name of Jesus? Can he do it while asking for His help? A good test for what is spoken is: Can one speak it and, in the same breath, name the name of the Lord Jesus? Can one speak it remembering that Jesus will hear, or asking Him to hear?"[ 77 ]
Giving thanks to God the Father through Him [to God and the Father by him].[ 78 ] "To God the Father" is equivalent to "to God and the Father." "Giving thanks" reinforces the admonition, "Be thankful" (verse 15). In the parallel in Ephesians Paul wrote, "giving thanks always for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father" (Eph 5:20); see chart PAUL GIVES THANKS at Col 1:12; THANKSGIVING STRESSED BY PAUL at Col 2:7).
Paul now makes a transition to the consideration of family and master-servant relationships. Involved in it all is the reflection of the submissive obedience and love of Christ. When children obey parents they learn to obey God. Servants "work heartily as unto the Lord" (verse 23). Wives obey husbands "as is fitting in the Lord" (verse 18). Husbands are to love their wives as Christ also loved the church" (Eph 5:25; see chart YOU SERVE CHRIST THE LORD at verse 24).
WIVES IN SUBJECTION
3:18 Wives, be in subjection to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.
Wives, be in subjection to your husbands [be subject to, submit yourselves unto your own husbands].[ 79 ] In a perfect marriage, the subjection of the wife beautifully reflects the husband's love (Eph 5:28; compare Tit 2:4). However, her subjection is not contingent upon his flawless behavior (1Ti 6:1, 2). She is subject to him, not because of his goodness, but because of Christ.
As is fitting in the Lord [as it is fit in the Lord].[ 80 ] Subjection is the obligation of the wife because it is "fitting in the Lord." It is not demeaning when understood in this light. Submission does not indicate inferiority.
HUSBANDS, LOVE YOUR WIVES
3:19 Husbands, love your wives, and do not be bitter against them.
Husbands, love your wives.[ 81 ] The husband who says, "I don't love my wife anymore" is not describing the love commanded in this verse at all. He is merely voicing the feelings she arouses in him or the enjoyment he experiences when he is with her or the lack of it. Regardless of emotions, the husband is commanded to direct purposeful and active good will in actions toward his wife. This is the love commanded. This he can choose to do.
And do not be not bitter against them [and be not bitter against them, and do not be harsh with them].[ 82 ] A husband's loving heart will not allow him to constantly irritate his wife or hurt her feelings. He will not abuse his head-ship by treating her as an inferior. He will not approach her with arrogance, harsh inflexibility or bitterness. The Bible does not authorize him to boss her like a pugnacious "army sergeant."
CHILDREN, OBEY YOUR PARENTS
3:20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing in the Lord.
Children, obey your parents.[ 83 ] If children are not taught to obey parents, they lack the foundation for obeying civil laws and the laws of God. Parents have a responsibility to be firm and consistent in discipline, but non-abusive (Eph 6:4). Children should be taught to love the Lord and to love and obey their father and mother. God is understanding and forgiving. Parents are to emulate these traits in child-rearing.
"Children" is not from TEKNIA little children but from TEKNA children. This suggests that it is not just little tots who are to obey parents. Youngsters are to be under subjection "until the day appointed by the father" (Ga 4:2). Some fathers set this day of freedom as the day the children become self-supporting or when they move out. The father ought to make this decision, not the child.
Are children to obey parents in all things?
In all things [in everything][ 84 ] (compare Ac 5:29).
For this is well-pleasing in the Lord [unto the Lord, for this pleases the Lord].[ 85 ] Rebellion or usurping of authority by children is not pleasing to God. Obedient children please Him. An overbearing attitude on the part of parents, however, is harmful to the child. "And you fathers, provoke not your children to wrath but nurture them in the chastening and admonition of the Lord (Eph 6:4).
DO NOT PROVOKE YOUR CHILDREN
3:21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, so they will not become discouraged.
Fathers, do not provoke your children [fathers, provoke not your children, to anger].[ 86 ] The Greek word for "provoke" is used only here and in 2 Corinthians 9:2 where it alludes to zeal that "stirred up" many. Some versions add "to anger" in italics. In my opinion, they could have omitted that word since the next phrase explains the reason not to provoke them.
Those in authority (parents, or those in loco parentis) may tend to take advantage. Fathers are not to provoke or exasperate their children by continual fault-finding and no praise. The reverse would be better -- much praise and a little fault-finding.
So they will not become discouraged [that they be not, lest they be, lest they become, discouraged]. Children need a lot of encouragement to maintain a sense of self-worth and acceptance. Too much criticism and too little praise may cause them to become discouraged, dispirited or lose heart.
SLAVES TO OBEY MASTERS
3:22 Slaves, obey your masters according to the flesh in all things, not with eye-service, as men-pleasers, but with integrity of heart, fearing the Lord.
Slaves [servants].[ 87 ] There is little doubt that some early Christians owned slaves and that the servants Paul addresses here were slaves. Could they have been voluntary servants? To help answer this question, please look at Romans 6:19 where the Greek neuter plural[ 88 ] is used twice of "presenting" members as servants to uncleanness and righteousness. Submission to sin is voluntary! Yet the word for "slaves" is used. We may infer that "slaves" may be voluntary servants.
Christians voluntarily obey the gospel. Similarly, employees volunteer their services, for pay of course. They are expected to submit and obey the boss. If they are unwilling to do so, they may resign and seek other work. Slaves did not have that option. They could be freed by manumission.[ 89 ] Unless a master decided to free a slave, it was extremely difficult for him to gain his freedom. In very rare cases he might purchase or earn his own freedom. He might try to run away. Usually he remained a slave until he died. It was not uncommon for Christian masters to voluntarily release their slaves.
Obey your masters [obey them that are your masters, obey your masters, obey those who are your masters].[ 90 ] The Greek word for "masters" is "lords." It is rendered as "master" in many versions. "Obey" in the Greek is the same word used in "children obey your parents" (verse 20).
According to the flesh [according to the flesh, earthly].[ 91 ] "According to the flesh" rules out elders of the church as being the "masters" under consideration here. Other Scriptures discuss submission to elders (see 1Ti 5:17; Heb 13:7, 17).
In all things [in everything].[ 92 ] "Obey . . . in all things" is modified by one exception. God's commands take precedence over man's (Ac 5:29).
Not with eye-service.[ 93 ] One reason Christians make valued employees is that they work just as hard when the boss is absent as when he is watching them. They do not perform with eye-service (see note on Eph 6:6).
As men-pleasers.[ 94 ] A Christian cannot be a man-pleaser and please God at the same time (see notes on Mt 6:24; Ga 1:10; Col 1:10; 3:20; charts PLEASING GOD; PLEASING GOD IN EVERYTHING at Col 1:10)
But with integrity of heart [but in singleness of heart].[ 95 ] A Christian slave (or an employee) works honestly and with sincere loyalty.
- Fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell (Mt 10:28).
- Be not haughty, but fear (Ro 11:20).
- Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling (Php 2:12).
- Who without respect of persons judges according to each man's work, pass the time of your sojourning in fear (1Pe 1:17).
- Fear God (1Pe 2:17).
Fearing the Lord [fearing God].[ 96 ] Christians working on the job do their best because, in their hearts, they are serving Christ the Lord (see chart FEARING GOD).
WORK HEARTILY AS FOR THE LORD
3:23 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord, and not for men.
Whatever you do [whatsoever, and whatsoever ye do, whatever your task]. "Whatever" includes secular work as well as church work. Both should be done with enthusiasm.
Work heartily [do it heartily]. On whatever job, Christians work heartily as they would if they worked for the Lord. Solomon submitted this: "Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might" (Ec 9:10).
As for the Lord [as unto, as to, as serving, the Lord]. The Holy Spirit is trying to tell Christians that the Lord has a share in everything they do. Christians should realize that God is their Partner. Anything that the Lord would not be willing to participate in should not be done.
And not for men [and not unto men, and not men].[ 97 ] Christians work as if they worked for the Lord, not for human praise or glory.
YOU SERVE CHRIST THE LORD
3:24 You serve Christ the Lord, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as a reward.
YOU SERVE CHRIST THE LORD
- Wives: as is fitting in the Lord (Col 3:18).
- Children: well-pleasing in the Lord (Col 3:20).
- Slaves: fearing the Lord (Col 3:22).
- Slaves: as for the Lord, and not for men (Col 3:23).
- Slaves: you serve Christ the Lord (Col 3:24).
- If any man serve Me, him will the Father honor (Joh 12:26).
- He that was called being free, is Christ's slave (1Co 7:22).
- As servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart (Eph 6:6).
- You serve Christ the Lord (Col 3:24).
You serve Christ the Lord [ye serve, for ye serve, you are serving, the Lord Christ]. A motivation for giving an employer an honest day's work is that the Christian worker serves Christ the Lord (see charts YOU SERVE CHRIST THE LORD; SERVING CHRIST).
Knowing that from the Lord you will receive [knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive].[ 98 ] Receiving from the Lord is a positive pay-back. Verse 25 supports this interpretation. It is not clear as to when the reward is to be received. We know there will be a pay day. "I will repay, says the Lord" (Ro 12:19). If the reward is not given on earth, we know it will be meted out at the judgment, for then each will receive "the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether it be good or bad" (2Co 5:10).
Notice that the inheritance is given by Christ to a slave! Does an inheritance not usually go to a son or a daughter? Undoubtedly, in heaven, slaves will be rewarded for the good service they have performed. The same may hold for employees and others. Knowing this can make a bad work situation endurable.
The inheritance as a reward [the inheritance as your reward, the recompense of the inheritance].[ 99 ] What is the reward? Although I am convinced that there will be degrees of rewards, the Lord's approval alone will be reward enough.
WRONG WILL BE REPAID
3:25 For he who does wrong will be repaid for the wrong that he has done, and there is no respect of persons.
For he who does wrong [for he that, but he that, doeth wrong, for the wrongdoer]. In eternity, it will not matter what kind of clothes one wore or the kind of car he drove. God has no favorites. Accounts will be settled. Something appropriate will be meted out for wrongs.
Will be repaid for the wrong that he has done [shall receive again, for, will be paid back for, the wrong which he hath, has, done]. Whether one is an abusive master on earth or an evil slave makes no difference in the judgment. Both will receive punishment.
And there is no respect of persons [and there is no partiality]. Respect of persons, in the present context, has to do with position or station in life. Elsewhere it refers to race (Ac 10:34, 35) and wealth (Jas 2:9). God is not prejudiced. He is impartial. "There is no respect of persons with Him" (Eph 6:9).
Christians ought to follow God's example and disregard wealth, rank and color (Jas 2:9). God expects Christians to be equal-opportunity employers and workers. Scriptural limitations however prevent women from occupying positions of authority in the church. For example, they are not to preach publicly (see notes on 1Co 14:34-37; Tit 2:3-5). They cannot lead public prayers (1Ti 2:8). They cannot become elders (1Ti 3:2; Tit 1:6).
[ 1 ] The basic text in this chapter is the Old Paths Version (OPV). Quotations from Colossians are from the OPV unless otherwise noted. Alternate phrases are from the ASV, KJV and RSV. Many quotations are from an updated but unpublished ASV. Greek transliteration follows the BibleSoft method.
[ 2 ] EI OUN SUNEEGERTHEETE TOO CHRISTOO, if therefore ye were co-raised with Christ (Marshall 796); SUNEEGERTHEETE is second person plural, first aorist passive indicative of SUNEGEIROO (Han 371); [SUN with, EGEIROO to arise], to raise together, used of the believer's spiritual resurrection with Christ (Vine 918, 919); the SUN together in SUNEGEIROO, is not to be understood as referring to similarity as though it only meant "like." Rather, it points to a condition or work effected by union with Christ in His resurrection, taking place in and proceeding from it (Zodhiates 1338).
[ 3 ] Since the OT ordinances had been canceled at the cross, any effort to implement them in the church age amounts to the same as enforcing human ordinances.
[ 4 ] TA ANOO ZEETEITE, HOU HO CHRISTOS ESTIN, the things above seek, where Christ is (Marshall 796); ZEETEITE is second person plural, present active indicative or imperative of ZEETEOO (Han 371); of seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness, in the sense of coveting earnestly, striving after, Matthew 6:33; "the things that are above," Colossians 3:1 (Vine 1012); keep on seeking the things above (Williams); instead of a plain translation such as "seek the things that are above, the NIV puts other words into the text with "set your hearts on things above."
[ 5 ] Eternal life is not earned by human effort. Nevertheless, faithfulness is required (see Heb 10:39; Re 2:10).
[ 6 ] Compare Lightfoot.
[ 7 ] EN DEXIA TOU THEOU KATHEEMENOS, at [the] right [hand] of God sitting (Marshall 796).
[ 8 ] TA ANOO PHONEITE, the things above mind ye (Marshall 796); PHONEITE is second person plural, present active indicative or imperative of PHRONEOO (Han 371); practice occupying your minds with the things above (Williams).
[ 9 ] MEE TA EPI TEES GEES, not the things on the earth (Marshall 796); the NIV translators do not drastically change the meaning but, with their usual paraphrasing, substitute "earthly things" for "things on the earth."
[ 10 ] APETHANETE GAR, for ye died (Marshall 796); APETHANETE is second person plural, second aorist active indicative of APOTHNEESKOO (Han 371).
[ 11 ] KAI HEE ZOON HUMOON KEKRUPTAI SUN TOO CHRISTOO EN TOO THEOO, and the life of you has been hidden with Christ in God (Marshall 796); KEKRUPTAI is third person singular, perfect passive indicative of KRUPTOO (Han 371); covered, concealed, kept secret (Vine 548); to be hidden in something, with EN, in, followed by the dative (Zodhiates 895); and your life is now hidden in God (Williams); some manuscripts read "our life" (an unimportant textual variation).
[ 12 ] Paul had committed his soul to Christ (see 1Pe 4:19).
[ 13 ] HOTAN HO CHRISTOS PHANEROOTHEE, HE ZOON HEMOON, whenever Christ is manifested, the life of us (Marshall 796); PHANEROOTHEE is third person singular, first aorist passive subjunctive of PHANEROOO (Han 371).
[ 14 ] TOTE KAI HUMEIS SUN AUTOO PHANEROOTHEESESTHE EN DOXEE (Marshall 796); PHANEROOTHEESESTHE is second person plural, future passive indicative of PHANEROOO (Han 371).
[ 15 ] In 1 Corinthians 15:49, the "heavenly" refers to Christ.
[ 16 ] NEKROOSATE OUN, put ye to death therefore (Marshall 796); NEKROOSATE is second person plural, first aorist active imperative of NEKROOO (Han 371); put to death, used in the active voice in the sense of destroying the strength of, depriving of power, with reference to the evil desires which work in the body (Vine 265).
[ 17 ] TA MELEE TA EPI TEES GEES, the (your) members on the earth (Marshall 796); the NIV inserts "earthly nature" again with "whatever belongs to your earthly nature."
[ 18 ] PORNEIAN, illicit sexual intercourse (Vine 455); general term for pre-marital and extra-marital sex is used specifically for adultery in Matthew 5:32; 19:9 (Thayer 532).
[ 19 ] The word "fornication" encompasses several forms of sexual sins outside of marriage. It is broad enough to include bestiality, fellatio, cunnilingus, anilingus, and/or other homosexual acts as well as sexual intercourse outside of marriage.
[ 20 ] AKATHARSIAN, uncleanness (Marshall 796); uncleanness or filth in a natural or physical sense . . . moral uncleanness, lewdness, incontinence in general . . . any unnatural pollution, whether acted out by oneself (Ga 5:19; Col 3:5, or with another (Ro 1:24 [compare Ro 1:26, 27] (Zodhiates 108).
[ 21 ] Thayer 21.
[ 22 ] PATHOS, passion (Marshall 796); always used in the NT of passionate bad desire (Vine 38); denotes the unnatural lust which men indulge with men (Macknight 391); passion, lust . . . occurs three times in the NT; once coordinated with EPITHUMIA, desire [Col 3:5] (Zodhiates 1087).
[ 23 ] Compare Zodhiates 1087.
[ 24 ] EPITHUMIAN KAKEEN, desire bad (Marshall 796); is the more comprehensive term, including all manner of lusts and desires (Vine 209).
[ 25 ] KAI TEEN PLEONEXIAN, and covetousness (Marshall 796); literally, the desire to have more (Vine 245); the sinful desire which goes out after things of time and sense of every form and kind (Vincent 3.22); the "and" before the word covetousness has a climactic force; and especially (Vincent 3.502); [Mark 7:22, covetous thoughts, plans of fraud and extortion]; with sins of the flesh (Zodhiates 1173); and greed (Williams).
[ 26 ] Aorist tense, an act of self-devotion once for all (Vincent 3.71).
[ 27 ] Instruments of war (Vincent 3.70).
[ 28 ] HEETIS ESTIN EIDOOLOLATRIA, which is idolatry (Marshall 796); which is of the nature of idolatry (Lenski 155); which is real idolatry (Williams).
[ 29 ] Vine 574.
[ 30 ] ERCHETAI HEE ORGEE TOU THEOU, is coming the wrath of God (Marshall 797); ERCHETAI is third person singular, present middle indicative of ERCHOMAI (Han 371).
[ 31 ] DI' HA, because of which things (Marshall 796).
[ 32 ] EN HOIS KAI HUMEIS PERIEPATEESATE POTE, in which indeed ye walked then (Marshall 797); PERIEPATEESATE is second person plural, first aorist active indicative of PERIPATEOO (Han 371).
[ 33 ] HOTE EZEETE EN TOUTOIS, when ye lived in these things (Marshall 797); EZEETE is second person plural imperfect active indicative of ZAOO (Han 371).
[ 34 ] NUNI DE APOTHESTHE KAI HUMEIS TA PANTA, but now put away also ye all things (Marshall 797); APOTHESTHE is second person plural, second aorist middle imperative of APOTITHEEMI (Han 371); middle voice [always middle voice in NT], put off [AOI] from oneself (Vine 907).
[ 35 ] ORGEEN, wrath (Marshall 797); denotes a deeper and more permanent sentiment, a settled habit of mind, while wrath [THUMOS] is more turbulent, but temporary agitation (Vincent 3.110).
[ 36 ] THUMON, anger (Marshall 797).
[ 37 ] KAKIAN, malice (Marshall 797); being inherently evil (Zodhiates 807); badness in quality, "the vicious character generally" [Lightfoot] (Vine 704).
[ 38 ] BLASPHEEMIAN, blasphemy (Marshall 797); slander,
[ 39 ] AISCHOLOGIAN EK TOU STOMATOS HUMOON, abuse out of the mouth of you (Marshall 797); obscene discourse (Macknight 392); foul-mouthed abuse (Vincent 3.593); abusive speech.
[ 40 ] ME PSEUDESTHE EIS ALLEELOUS, not lie ye to one another (Marshall 797); PSEUDESTHE is second person plural, present middle imperative of PSEUDOMAI (Han 371).
[ 41 ] KAI ENDUSAMENOI TON NEON, and having put on the new man (Marshall 797); ENDUSAMENOI is the first aorist, middle participle, nominative plural masculine of ENDUOO (Han 371); used in the middle voice, of putting on oneself or another . . . metaphorically of putting on . . . the new man (Vine 908).
[ 42 ] TON ANAKAINOUMENON EIS EPIGNOOSIN, being renewed in full knowledge (Marshall 797); ANAKAINOUMENON is the present passive participle, accusative singular masculine of ANAKAINOOO (Han 371); to knowledge upon knowledge; so that you may obtain a perfect knowledge (Williams); the one made over new for real knowledge (Lenski 160).
[ 43 ] Macknight 392. Compare Hebrews 6:6 where EIS METANOIAN "unto repentance" is given as "by repentance."
[ 44 ] In ancient times, circumcision was practiced among many Semite peoples including the Hebrews, Arabians, Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites and Egyptians (Zondervan 172).
[ 45 ] Any word that sounds like what it represents is an onomatopoeia. Some examples are buzz, rumble and whiz.
[ 46 ] SKUTHEES, Scythian (Marshall 797); a Scythian, an inhabitant of Scythia, that is, ancient Russia: Colossians 3:11. By the more civilized nations of antiquity the Scythians were regarded as the wildest of all barbarians (Thayer 580).
[ 47 ] ENDUSASTHE OUN, put ye on therefore (Marshall 797); ENDUSASTHE is second person plural, first aorist middle imperative of ENDUOO (Han 371); used in the middle voice, of putting on oneself, or on another . . . metaphorically, of putting on various Christian qualities (Vine 908).
[ 48 ] Stewart, The Westminster Confession Tested, Lindsay, Aberdeen, no date, page 378.
[ 49 ] SPLAGCHNA OIKTIRMOU, bowels of compassion (Marshall 797).
[ 50 ] Viscera (plural of viscus) are the organs in the main body cavity including the heart, liver and intestines.
[ 51 ] KREESTOTEETA, kindness (Marshall 797); [akin to CHREESTOS serviceable, good, pleasant], goodness of heart, gentleness, graciousness (Vine 632); [from CHREESTOS useful, profitable], benignity, kindness, usefulness (Zodhiates 1482).
[ 52 ] TAPEINOPHROSUNEEN, humility (Marshall 797); lowliness of mind, humbleness (Vine 696); humility, lowliness of mind, the esteeming of ourselves small, inasmuch as we are so, the correct estimate of ourselves (Zodhiates 1366).
[ 53 ] PRAUTEETA, meekness (Marshall 797); "is an in wrought grace of the soul; and the exercises of it are first and chiefly towards God. It is that temper of spirit in which we accept his dealings with us as good, and therefore without disputing or resisting; it is closely linked with the word TAPEINOPHROSUMEE [humility] and follows directly upon it...it is only the humble heart which is also the meek, and which, as such, does not fight against God and more or less struggle and contend with Him. This meekness, however, being first of all a meekness before God, is also such in the face of men, even of evil men, out of a sense that these, with the insults and injuries which they may inflict, are permitted and employed by Him for the chastening and purifying of His elect" (Trench, Synonyms 42, 43 via Vine 737, 738).
[ 54 ] MAKROTHUMIAN, long-suffering (Marshall 797); longsuffering, forbearance, patience, longsuffering . . . to suffer song, be long-suffering, as opposed to hasty anger or punishment . . . to endure patiently as opposed to losing faith or giving up . . . involves exercising understanding and patience toward persons while HUPOMEENOO [patience] involves putting up with things or circumstances (Zodhiates 3117); [MAKROS long, THUMOS wrath, anger, temper].
[ 55 ] ANECHOMENOI ALLEELOON, forbearing one another (Marshall 797); ANECHOMENOI is the present middle participle, nominative plural masculine of ANECHOMAI (Han 371); to bear with, have patience with in regard to the errors or weaknesses of anyone (Zodhiates 172).
[ 56 ] KAI CHARIZOMENOI HEAUTOIS, and forgiving yourselves (Marshall 797); CHARIZOMENOI is the present middle participle, nominative plural masculine of CHARIZOMAI (Han 371); bestow a favor unconditionally, used of the act of forgiveness as in Ephesians 4:32 (Vine 463); included is the idea of freeness (Vincent 3.296).
[ 57 ] EAN TIS PROS TINA ECHEE MOMPHEEN, if anyone against anyone has a complaint (Marshall 797); MOMPHEEN denotes blame [akin to MEMPHOMAI to blame], an occasion of complaint (Vine 211); to find fault or blame. Fault-finding, blame, censure, an occasion of complaint (Zodhiates 995).
[ 58 ] EPI PASIN DE TOUTOIS, over all and these things (Marshall 797); EPI signifies accession or addition upon or unto something already mentioned or implied . . . "besides all this" (Zodhiates 619); of that to which anything is added [so that it is, as it were, upon it]; in addition to; over and above . . . besides all this (Thayer 233).
[ 59 ] TEN AGAPEEN, love (Marshall 797); [a feminine noun, from AGAPAOO to love], love, affectionate regard, goodwill, benevolence . . . more especially of good will toward others, the love of our neighbor, brother affection, which the Lord Jesus commands and inspires (Zodhiates 66, 67); "the characteristic word of Christianity, and since the Spirit of revelation has used it to express ideas previously unknown, enquiry into its use, whether in Greek literature or in the Septuagint, throws but little light upon its distinctive meaning in the NT. Compare however, Leviticus 19:18; Deuteronomy 6:5. . . . Christian love, whether exercised toward the brethren, or toward men generally, is not an impulse from the feelings, it does not always run with the natural inclinations, nor does it spend itself only upon those for whom some affinity is discovered. . . ." (Vine 692, 693); "a pagan source [of AGAPE] was lacking for a long time. . . . now we have an inscription that is surely pagan" (Arndt 5).
[ 60 ] HO ESTIN SUNDESMOS TEES TELEIOTEETOS, which is [the] bond of completeness (Marshall 797); HO which is neuter and does not match "love" (feminine) nor "bond" masculine; which means bond of the completeness (Lenski 172); which is the tie of perfection that binds us together (Williams).
[ 61 ] Vincent 3.505.
[ 62 ] KAI HE EIREENEE TOU CHRISTOU, and the peace of Christ (Marshall 797).
[ 63 ] BRABEUETOO EN TAIS KARDIAIS HUMOON, let rule in the hearts of you (Marshall 797); BRABEUETOO is third person singular, present active imperative of BRABEUOO (Han 371); to be a BRABEUS, an umpire, director or arbiter in the public Greek games. In the NT, to rule, govern, and metaphorically to prevail, abound. . . . "the peace of God rule in your hearts" (Zodhiates 348); let it be the arbiter [act as umpire, judge and referee who decides to whom the prize must be accorded] in your heart (Lenski 174, 175).
[ 64 ] Barclay 190.
[ 65 ] KAI EUCHARISTOI GINESTHE, and thankful be ye (Marshall 798); GINESTHE is second person plural, present middle imperative of GINOMAI (Han 371); and practice being thankful (Williams); ever be thankful (Lenski 176).
[ 66 ] Whiteside 42, 285.
[ 67 ] DIDASKONTES KAI NOUTHETOUNTES HEAUTOUS, teaching and admonishing yourselves (Marshall 798); one another [HEAUTOUS] is not reciprocal, it is reflexive: "yourselves" (Lenski 177).
[ 68 ] This does not preclude the reenforcement of spiritual lessons in singing.
[ 69 ] The listener is himself a singer who is teaching other singers who are also listeners.
[ 70 ] PSALMOIS, in psalms (Marshall 798); an OT Psalm or a composition having that character. The idea of accompaniment passed away in usage by NT times (Vincent 3.506); primarily denoted a striking or twitching with the fingers [on musical strings]; then, a sacred song, sung to musical accompaniment, a psalm. . . . of psalms in general (Vine 901); in all probability the psalms of Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16 are the inspired Psalms of the Hebrew Canon (Zodhiates 1491); of Christian songs of praise (Arndt 891); a pious song, a psalm (Thayer 675).
[ 71 ] Deaver 1.XI.
[ 72 ] HUMNOIS, hymns (Marshall 798); a song of praise addressed to God (Vine 581); a sacred song, hymn (Thayer 637); a song or hymn in honor of God . . . the word "hymn" nowhere occurs in the writings of the apostolic fathers because it was used as a praise to heathen deities and thus the early Christians instinctively shrank from it (Zodhiates 1406, 1407).
[ 73 ] OODAIS PNEUMATIKAIS, songs spiritual (Marshall 798); the general term for songs with spiritual content (Weed 91); in the Scriptures, a song of praise to God or Christ . . . with the epithet PNEUMATIKOI [spiritual] (Thayer 679); to sing in praise or honor of someone. Song. . . . Paul qualifies it in Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16 as spiritual songs in association with psalms and hymns, because OODEE by itself might mean any kind of song, as of battle, harvest, festal (Zodhiates 1497); "spiritual songs" are songs of which the burden is the things revealed by the Spirit (Vine 1078).
[ 74 ] EN TEE CHARITA ADONTES EN TAIS KARDIAIS HUMOON TOO THEOO, with grace singing in the hearts of you to God (Marshall 798); ADONTES is the present active participle, nominative plural masculine of ADOO (Han 371); the lyrical emotion of a devout and grateful soul (Thayer 13); always of praise to God (Zodhiates 87).
[ 75 ] Lipscomb 299.
[ 76 ] PANTA EN ONOMATI KURIOU 'IEESOU, all things [do] in [the] name of [the] Lord Jesus (Marshall 798); in recognition of the authority of [sometimes combined with the thought of relying or resting on] (Vine 772); in connection with the revelation of the Lord Jesus (Lenski 179).
[ 77 ] Barclay 191.
[ 78 ] EUCHARISTOUNTES TOO THEOO PATRI DI' AUTOU, giving thanks to God [the] Father through him (Marshall 798).
[ 79 ] HAI GUNAIKES HUPOTASSESTHE TOIS ANTRASIN, the wives, be ye subject to that (your) husbands (Marshall 798); [from HUPO under, TASSOO to arrange], primarily a military term, to rank under, to be subject (Vine 1109).
[ 80 ] HOS ANEKEN EN KURIOO, as is befitting in [the] Lord (Marshall 798); becoming, suitable (Young, page 353), what is due a person, one's duty (Vine, page 109).
[ 81 ] HOI ANDRES AGAPATE TAS GUNAIKAS, the husbands, love ye the (your) wives (Marshall 798); AGAPATE is not an impulse of the feelings (Vine, page 703); "an active and purposeful love (Lenski 182).
[ 82 ] KAI MEE PIKRAINESTHE PROS AUTAS, and not be bitter toward them (Marshall 798); PIKRAINESTHE is second person plural, present passive imperative of PIKRAINOO (Han 371); [from a root PIK- meaning to cut, to prick], signifies, in the active voice, to be bitter, Colossians 3:19, or to embitter, irritate, or to make bitter, Revelation 10:9 (Vine 121).
[ 83 ] TA TEKNA, HUPAKOUETE TOIS GONEUSIN, the children, obey ye the (your) parents (Marshall 798); children in all things are to obey (HUPAKOUETE) listen, attend, submit, obey (Vine 800); not TEKNIA, little children.
[ 84 ] KATA PANTA, in all respects (Marshall 798).
[ 85 ] TOUTO GAR EUARESTON ESTIN EN KURIOO, for this well-pleasing is in [the] Lord (Marshall 798).
[ 86 ] HOI PATERES MEE ERETHIZETE TA TEKNA HUMOON, the fathers, do not ye provoke the children of you (Marshall 798).
[ 87 ] HOI DOULOI, the slaves (Marshall 798); bond-servants, or, in some instances, servants in general.
[ 88 ] DOULA is the plural of DOULOS a slave.
[ 89 ] Manumission is the act of buying a slave and setting him free.
[ 90 ] HUPAKOUETE TOIS KURIOIS, obey ye the (your) lords (Marshall 798); practice obedience to [the Lord] (Williams).
[ 91 ] KATA SARKA according to [the] flesh (Marshall 798); your earthly masters (Williams).
[ 92 ] KATA PANTA, in all respects (Marshall 798); in everything (Williams).
[ 93 ] MEE EN OPHTHALMODOULIAIS, not with eyeservice (Marshall 798); denotes service performed only under the master's eye [OPHTHALMOS an eye, DOULOS a slave], diligently performed when he is looking, but neglected in his absence (Vine 395).
[ 94 ] HOS ANTHROOPARESKOI, as men-pleasers (Marshall 798); an adjective signifying studying to please men [ANTHROOPOS man, ARESKOO to please], designates, "not simply one who is pleasing to men . . . , but one who endeavors to please men and not God" (Cremer via Vine 731).
[ 95 ] ALL' EN HAPLOTEETI KARDIAS, but in singleness of heart (Marshall 798); [from HAPLOUS simple, single], from sincerity of mind springs "liberality." The thought of sincerity of mind is present in Romans 12:8; 2 Corinthians 11:3; Ephesians 6:5; Colossians 3:22 (Vine 135); single, not having an ulterior or double motive. . . . "in singleness of your heart" means in sincerity (Zodhiates 214).
[ 96 ] PHOBOUMENOI TON KURION, fearing the Lord (Marshall 798).
[ 97 ] This is probably an ellipsis meaning "not for men only."
[ 98 ] EIDOTES HOTI APO KURIOU APOLEEMPSESTHE, knowing that from the Lord ye will receive (Marshall 799).
[ 99 ] TEEN ANATAPODOSIN TEES KLEERONOMIAS, the reward of the inheritance (Marshall 799); ANATAPODOSIN, reward, exact requital (Lightfoot); [derived from ANTAPODIDOOMI, to recompense], literally, a giving back in return; KLEERONOMIAS is the prospective condition and possessions of the believer in the new order of things to be ushered in at the return of Christ (Vine 589, 931).
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