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1:1  Paul, an apostle of Messiah Jesus by God’s purpose, and Timothy my brother;
1:2  to God’s holy people in Colossae, the Messiah’s faithful family; grace to you and peace, from God our father.
1:3  We always thank God, the father of our Lord, Messiah Jesus, when we pray for you,
1:4  because we’ve heard of your faith in Messiah Jesus and the love you have for all God’s holy people,
1:5  because of the hope which is kept safe for you in the heavenly places. You heard about this before in the word of truth, the gospel
1:6  which has arrived on your doorstep—just as, in fact, it’s producing fruit and growing in all the world, as it has been among you, from the day you heard it and came to know the grace of God in truth.
1:7  That’s how you learnt it from Epaphras our beloved fellow slave. He’s a loyal and faithful servant of the Messiah on your behalf.
1:8  He it was who gave us the news about your love in the spirit.
1:9  For this reason, from the day we heard it, we haven’t stopped praying for you. We’re asking God to fill you with the knowledge of what he wants in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.
1:10  This will mean that you’ll be able to conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the Lord, and so give him real delight, as you bear fruit in every good work and grow up in the knowledge of God.
1:11  I pray that you’ll be given all possible strength, according to the power of his glory, so that you’ll have complete patience and become truly steadfast and joyful.
1:12  And I pray that you will learn to give thanks to the father, who has made you fit to share the inheritance of God’s holy ones in the light.
1:13  He has delivered us from the power of darkness, and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved son.
1:14  He is the one in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
1:15  He is the image of God, the invisible one, the firstborn of all creation.
1:16  For in him all things were created, in the heavens and here on the earth. Things we can see and things we cannot, —thrones and lordships and rulers and powers— all things were created both through him and for him.
1:17  And he is ahead, prior to all else and in him all things hold together;
1:18  and he himself is supreme, the head over the body, the church. He is the start of it all, firstborn from realms of the dead; so in all things he might be the chief.
1:19  For in him all the Fullness was glad to dwell
1:20  and through him to reconcile all to himself, making peace through the blood of his cross, through him—yes, things on the earth, and also the things in the heavens.
1:21  So what about you? Well, there was a time when you were excluded! You were enemies in your thinking, and in wicked behavior.
1:22  But now he has reconciled you in the body of his flesh, through death, in order to bring you into his presence holy, blameless and without any accusation.
1:23  This assumes, of course, that you keep firmly on in the faith—by which I mean, solid on your foundations, and not shifting from the hope of the gospel which you heard. This gospel, after all, has been announced in all creation under heaven! And this is the gospel of which I, Paul, became a servant.
1:24  Right now I’m having a celebration—a celebration of my sufferings, which are for your benefit! And I’m steadily completing, in my own flesh, what is presently lacking in the Messiah’s afflictions on behalf of his body, which is the church.
1:25  I became the church’s servant, according to the terms laid down by God when he gave me my commission on your behalf, the commission to fulfill God’s word.
1:26  This word declares the mystery that was kept secret from past ages and generations, but now has been revealed to God’s holy people.
1:27  God’s intention was to make known to them just what rich glory this mystery contains, out there among the nations. And this is the key: the Messiah, living within you as the hope of glory!
1:28  He is the one we are proclaiming. We are instructing everybody and teaching everybody in every kind of wisdom, so that we can present everybody grown up, complete, in the Messiah.
1:29  That’s what I am working for, struggling with all his energy which is powerfully at work within me.