To this point in the main body of his letter, Paul has reminded his readers of the essential ingredients of the gospel (1:12-23) they first heard from Epaphras (1:6-7), and has defended his authority to admonish and teach his readers in its light (1:24--2:3)... View the entire commentary
The Error of Sophistry
Paul's quarrel is not with academic philosophy per se, nor is it with anyone who drafts persuasive and learned arguments to advance the gospel truth... View the entire commentary
Paul's Response to the "Philosopher"
In responding to a philosophy or system of truth devoid of any Christology, Paul returns to two core convictions found in his opening confession of the Lord Christ (1:15-20)... View the entire commentary
Christ Is God Within History
The first formulation of Christ's lordship claims that Christ embodied all the fullness of the Deity and that he did so in bodily form... View the entire commentary
Christ Is Lord over History
Paul's second christological argument is a more direct response to the Christless philosophy in Colosse: Christ is the head over every power and authority (2:10)... View the entire commentary
Sociologist James Davison Hunter, in his recent book on evangelicalism, characterized historic evangelicalism as "world-denying... View the entire commentary
Accusation Without Foundation
The second section of Paul's theological polemic envisions a particular person who apparently is acting as a spiritual umpire, watching to see whether the community observes certain holy days and complies with certain dietary regulations and using these things to determine the quality of their devotion to God... View the entire commentary
Once again Paul uses the difficult but important catchword stoicheia, translated "basic principles," to call attention to his opponent's preoccupation with the four basic elements of earth (see 2:8), which make up the very things not handled, not tasted, not touched... View the entire commentary
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