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2:1  I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those in Laodicea, as well as for those who have still not seen me face to face.
2:2  My purpose is that their hearts, joined together in love, may be encouraged. May they have all the riches of the full assurance of understanding, leading to a true knowledge of the mystery of God—that is, Messiah.
2:3  In Him all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden.
2:4  I am telling you this so that no one will deceive you with persuasive-sounding arguments.
2:5  For even though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit—rejoicing to see your good order and the steadfastness of your trust in Messiah.
2:6  Therefore as you received Messiah Yeshua as Lord, so continue to walk in Him—
2:7  rooted and built up in Him and established in your faith just as you were taught, overflowing with thankfulness.
2:8  See that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men and the basic principles of the world rather than Messiah.
2:9  For all the fullness of Deity lives bodily in Him,
2:10  and in Him you have been filled to fullness. He is the head over every ruler and authority.
2:11  In Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision done not by hand, in the stripping away of the body of the flesh through the circumcision of Messiah.
2:12  You were buried along with Him in immersion, through which you also were raised with Him by trusting in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.
2:13  When you were dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive together with Him when He pardoned us all our transgressions.
2:14  He wiped out the handwritten record of debts with the decrees against us, which was hostile to us. He took it away by nailing it to the cross.
2:15  After disarming the principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in the cross.
2:16  Therefore, do not let anyone pass judgment on you in matters of food or drink, or in respect to a festival or new moon or Shabbat.
2:17  These are a foreshadowing of things to come, but the reality is Messiah.
2:18  Let no one disqualify you by insisting on false humility and worship of angels—going into detail about what he has seen, puffed up without cause by his fleshly mind.
2:19  He is not holding fast to the Head. It is from Him that the whole body, nourished and held together by its joints and tendons, grows with a godly increase.
2:20  If you died with Messiah to the basic principles of the world, why—as though living in the world—do you subject yourselves to their rules?
2:21  “Don’t handle! Don’t taste! Don’t touch!”
2:22  These all lead to decay with use, based as they are on man-made commands and teachings.
2:23  Indeed, these are matters that have an appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and humility and self-denial of the body—yet none are of any value for stopping indulgence of the flesh.