English Standard Version
Thanksgiving and Prayer
3 (A)We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 since we heard of (B)your faith in Christ Jesus and of (C)the love that you have for all the saints, 5 because of (D)the hope (E)laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in (F)the word of the truth, the gospel, 6 which has come to you, as indeed (G)in the whole world it is (H)bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you (I)heard it and understood (J)the grace of God in truth, 7 just as you learned it from (K)Epaphras our beloved (L)fellow servant.[a] He is (M)a faithful minister of Christ on your[b] behalf 8 and has made known to us your (N)love in the Spirit.
9 And so, (O)from the day we heard, (P)we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that (Q)you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all (R)spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as (S)to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, (T)fully pleasing to him: (U)bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 (V)being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for (W)all endurance and patience (X)with joy; 12 (Y)giving thanks[c] to the Father, who has qualified you[d] to share in (Z)the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He (AA)has delivered us from (AB)the domain of darkness and transferred us to (AC)the kingdom of (AD)his beloved Son, 14 (AE)in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
The Preeminence of Christ
15 (AF)He is the image of (AG)the invisible God, (AH)the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by[e] him all things were created, (AI)in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether (AJ)thrones or (AK)dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created (AL)through him and for him. 17 And (AM)he is before all things, and in him all things (AN)hold together. 18 And (AO)he is the head of the body, the church. He is (AP)the beginning, (AQ)the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For (AR)in him all the (AS)fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and (AT)through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, (AU)making peace (AV)by the blood of his cross.
21 (AW)And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, (AX)doing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled (AY)in his body of flesh by his death, (AZ)in order to present you holy and blameless and (BA)above reproach before him, 23 (BB)if indeed you continue in the faith, (BC)stable and steadfast, not shifting from (BD)the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed (BE)in all creation[f] under heaven, (BF)and of which I, Paul, became a minister.Read full chapter