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Colossians 4 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 4

Masters, treat your slaves justly and fairly, realizing that you too have a Master in heaven.

Prayer and Apostolic Spirit. Persevere in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving; at the same time, pray for us, too, that God may open a door to us for the word, to speak of the mystery of Christ, for which I am in prison, that I may make it clear, as I must speak. Conduct yourselves wisely toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you know how you should respond to each one.

V. Conclusion[a]

Tychicus and Onesimus. Tychicus,[b] my beloved brother, trustworthy minister, and fellow slave in the Lord, will tell you all the news of me. I am sending him to you for this very purpose, so that you may know about us and that he may encourage your hearts, together with Onesimus, a trustworthy and beloved brother, who is one of you. They will tell you about everything here.

From Paul’s Co-Workers. 10 Aristarchus,[c] my fellow prisoner, sends you greetings, as does Mark the cousin of Barnabas (concerning whom you have received instructions; if he comes to you, receive him), 11 and Jesus,[d] who is called Justus, who are of the circumcision; these alone are my co-workers for the kingdom of God, and they have been a comfort to me. 12 Epaphras[e] sends you greetings; he is one of you, a slave of Christ [Jesus], always striving for you in his prayers so that you may be perfect and fully assured in all the will of God. 13 For I can testify that he works very hard for you and for those in Laodicea[f] and those in Hierapolis. 14 Luke[g] the beloved physician sends greetings, as does Demas.

A Message for the Laodiceans. 15 Give greetings to the brothers in Laodicea and to Nympha and to the church in her house.[h] 16 And when this letter is read before you, have it read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and you yourselves read the one from Laodicea.[i] 17 And tell Archippus, “See that you fulfill the ministry[j] that you received in the Lord.”

18 The greeting is in my own hand,[k] Paul’s. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.

Footnotes:

  1. 4:7–18 Paul concludes with greetings and information concerning various Christians known to the Colossians.
  2. 4:7 Tychicus: Acts 20:4 mentions his role in the collection for Jerusalem; Eph 6:21 repeats what is said here; see also 2 Tm 4:12; Ti 3:12.
  3. 4:10 Aristarchus: a Thessalonian who was with Paul at Ephesus and Caesarea and on the voyage to Rome (Acts 19:29; 20:4; 27:2). Mark: also referred to at Phlm 24 and 2 Tm 4:11 and, as “John Mark,” in Acts (Acts 12:12, 25; 13:13; 15:37–40). See also 1 Pt 5:13 and the note there. Traditionally the author of the second gospel.
  4. 4:11 Jesus: a then common Jewish name, the Greek form of Joshua.
  5. 4:12 Epaphras: see notes on Col 1:3–8 and Col 1:7.
  6. 4:13 Laodicea: see note on Col 2:1. Hierapolis: a city northeast of Laodicea and northwest of Colossae.
  7. 4:14 Luke: only here described as a medical doctor; cf. Phlm 24 and 2 Tm 4:11. Traditionally the author of the third gospel. Demas: cf. Phlm 24; he later deserted Paul (2 Tm 4:10).
  8. 4:15 Nympha and…her house: some manuscripts read a masculine for the house-church leader, “Nymphas and…his house.”
  9. 4:16 The one from Laodicea: either a letter by Paul that has been lost or the Letter to the Ephesians (cf. note on Eph 1:1 in Ephesus).
  10. 4:17 Fulfill the ministry: usually taken to mean that Archippus, the son of Philemon and Apphia (Phlm 1–2), is “pastor” at Colossae. An alternate interpretation is that Archippus, not Philemon, is the owner of the slave Onesimus and that Paul is asking Archippus to complete the service he has received in the Lord by sending Onesimus back to minister to Paul in his captivity (cf. Phlm 20).
  11. 4:18 My own hand: a postscript in Paul’s own hand was his custom; cf. Gal 6:11–18 and 2 Thes 3:17–18.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Colossians 4 New International Version (NIV)

Masters, provide your slaves with what is right and fair, because you know that you also have a Master in heaven.

Further Instructions

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

Final Greetings

Tychicus will tell you all the news about me. He is a dear brother, a faithful minister and fellow servant[a] in the Lord. I am sending him to you for the express purpose that you may know about our[b] circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts. He is coming with Onesimus, our faithful and dear brother, who is one of you. They will tell you everything that is happening here.

10 My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.) 11 Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews[c] among my co-workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me. 12 Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. 13 I vouch for him that he is working hard for you and for those at Laodicea and Hierapolis. 14 Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings. 15 Give my greetings to the brothers and sisters at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house.

16 After this letter has been read to you, see that it is also read in the church of the Laodiceans and that you in turn read the letter from Laodicea.

17 Tell Archippus: “See to it that you complete the ministry you have received in the Lord.”

18 I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.

Footnotes:

  1. Colossians 4:7 Or slave; also in verse 12
  2. Colossians 4:8 Some manuscripts that he may know about your
  3. Colossians 4:11 Greek only ones of the circumcision group
New International Version (NIV)

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