EPISTLE TO THE COLOSSIANS, the twelfth book of the New Testament, the authorship of which is ascribed to the Apostle Paul.
This Epaphras, like the majority of the Colossians, was a Gentile.
The letter begins with a thanksgiving to God for the spiritual growth of the Colossians, and continues with a prayer for their fuller knowledge of the divine will, for a more perfect Christian life, and for a spirit of thanksgiving, seeing that it is God who guarantees their salvation in Christ (i.
(I) As to style, it is replied that if there are peculiarities in Colossians, so also in the admittedly genuine letters, Romans, Corinthians, Galatians.
Moreover, if Philippians is Pauline, so also the stylistically similar Colossians (cf.
Holtzmann (1872) subjected both Colossians and Ephesians to a rigorous examination, and found in Colossians at least a nucleus of Pauline material.
- In addition to the literature already mentioned, see the articles of Sanday on "Colossians" and Robertson on "Ephesians" in Smith's Bible Dictionary (2nd ed., 1893), and the article of A.
Julicher on "Colossians and Ephesians" in the Encyclopaedia Biblica (1899); the Introductions of H.
He had previously written his commentaries on the epistles to the Galatians (1865), Philippians (1868) and Colossians (1875), the notes to which were distinguished by sound judgment and enriched from his large store of patristic and classical learning.
Like its sister Epistle to the Colossians, it represents, whoever wrote it, deep experience and bold use of reflection on the meaning of that experience; if it be from the pen of the Apostle Paul, it reveals to us a distinct and important phase of his thought.
16, which was to be had by the Colossians from Laodicea, is not unlikely.
The relationship, both literary and theological, between the epistle to the Ephesians and that to the Colossians is very close.
(4) The relation of Ephesians to Colossians would be a serious difficulty only if Colossians were held to be not by Paul.
Those who hold to the genuineness of Colossians find it easier to explain the resemblances as the product of the free working of the same mind, than as due to a deliberate imitator.
Holtzmann's elaborate and very ingenious theory (1872) that Colossians has been expanded, on the basis of a shorter letter of Paul, by the same later hand which had previously written the whole of Ephesians, has not met with favour from recent scholars.
But it must remain possible that contact with new scenes and persons, and especially such controversial necessities as are exemplified in Colossians, stimulated Paul to work out more fully, under the influence of Alexandrian categories, lines of thought of which the germs and origins must be admitted to have been present in earlier epistles.
Moreover, if Colossians be accepted as Pauline (and among other strong reasons the unquestionable genuineness of the epistle to Philemon renders it extremely difficult not to accept it), the chief matters of this more advanced Christian thought are fully legitimated for Paul.
At very nearly the same time he must have written Colossians and Philemon; all three were sent by Tychicus.
For Rome speaks the greater probability of the metropolis as the place in which a fugitive slave would try to hide himself, the impression given in Colossians of possible opportunity for active mission work (Col.
Lightfoot's commentary on Colossians (1875, 3rd ed.
This, according to Lightfoot (see Colossians $, 272-298) and Zahn, is a translation from the Greek.
Rome would be a more natural rendezvous for fugitivarii (runaway slaves) than Caesarea (Hilgenfeld and others), and it is probable that Paul wrote this note, with Philippians and Colossians, from the metropolis.
Especially Ha,upt's note) and does not involve the interpolation of matter by the later redactor of Colossians and Ephesians (Holtzmann, Hausrath' and Bruckner, Reihenfolge d.
During the 19th century, the hesitation about Colossians led to the rejection of Philemon by some critics as a pseudonymous little pamphlet on the slave question - an aberration of literary criticism (reproduced in Ency.
- In addition to most commentaries on Colossians and to Dr M.
Besides these there has also appeared a small volume containing Lectures on Colossians, Philemon and Ephesians (Berlin, 1865).
Hence on the one hand it is unreal to lay stress on coincidences with Romans, as if these necessarily implied that both epistles must have been composed shortly after one another, while again the further stage of thought on Christ and the Church, which is evident in Colossians, does not prove that the latter must have followed the former.
Lightfoot on Colossians ii.
Apart from this, the keen criticism of modern times has fastened especially upon two groups: 2 Thessalonians; Colossians with Philemon, Ephesians and the Pastorals.
But there is an arguable case of some real weight against Colossians, Ephesians, Pastorals - least against Colossians and perhaps most against the Pastorals.
Colossians is strongly vouched for by its connexion with Philemon.
Perhaps the position of these two epistles might be described as not unlike that of Colossians and Ephesians.
I.; Lightfoot on the Colossians; Lucius, Der Essenismus in seinem Verhaltniss zum Judenthum; Wellhausen, Israelitische and jiidische Geschichte; Ed.
We gather, too, that his restoration to Paul's confidence took place some time earlier, as the Colossians had already been bidden by oral message or letter to welcome him if he should visit them.
His publications were connected with biblical criticism and interpretation, some of them being for popular use and others more strictly scientific. To the former class belong the Biblical Cyclopaedia, his edition of Cruden's Concordance, his Early Oriental History, and his discourses on the Divine Love and on Paul the Preacher; to the latter his commentaries on the Greek text of St Paul's epistles to the Ephesians, Colossians, Philippians and Galatians, published at intervals in four volumes.
There are other books in the New Testament that bear the same impress, the epistles to the Ephesians and the Colossians, and to a much greater degree the epistle to the Hebrews.