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Deepen Discipleship

Colossians 1


God, help me to bear fruit. May my faith in the gospel be firm. May my love for all the saints be evident. May I be filled with real hope. Grant that Your Spirit will strengthen me with all power so that I can endure whatever trials come, so that I can have patience and joy. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Read and Learn

Read Colossians 1

Colossians 1:1–11 In Colossians 1, Paul encouraged the church in Colossae for their growing maturity. He also reminded them of the beauty of Christ and the power of the gospel and exhorted them to act like the church. In the first part of the book, Paul thanked God that the Colossians had faith, love, and hope because they were grounded in the gospel. Their maturing faith was a working faith—Paul could see it, and he’d heard about it. So he applauded them for doing well.

Because Paul had heard the Holy Spirit was working in their lives, he prayed the Colossians would be full of spiritual wisdom and understanding. Why? So they could follow God appropriately, which necessarily involves bearing fruit. (See Galatians 5:22 for a definition of fruit.) He prayed that God would give them supernatural strength so they could endure with patience and joyful thankfulness. What a prayer this is! It’s a nutshell explanation of what Christian maturity and growth could look like.


Watch a short visual representation of Colossians 1:17  (1:30),

© Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters. Used by permission.

and then watch a very short message by John Piper on the Supremacy of Christ (2:19).

By John Piper. © Desiring God Foundation. Source: Used by permission.

Colossians 1:12–23 Then, Paul reminded them of the gospel: God had chosen them to share in His inheritance. He had taken them out of the darkness of their sins and brought them into the hope and joy of Jesus. As soon as Paul referenced Jesus, he can’t help but launch into a praise poem about Him. He reminded them that Jesus is God, He was with God in the beginning, and He wanted to reconcile people to Himself. Paul was excited because he was a minister of the gospel to them and to the Gentiles.

Colossians 1:24–28 Paul then stopped to remind them of their mission: to proclaim Christ and work to present all Christ-followers mature in Christ. This is the mission of the church: teaching people about Jesus and then working to help them grow up in their faith.


Listen to John Piper explain what Paul means when he says “filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ.”

By John Piper. © Desiring God Foundation. Source: Used by permission.

Daily Verse for Meditation

Colossians 1:15-20

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent.19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven,making peace by the blood of his cross.

Reflect and Change
  1. In 1:3–6, Paul highlighted three things that were growing among the Colossians: their faith in Christ Jesus, their love for the saints, and the gospel among them. How would Paul rate you on these three?
  2. How are Paul’s words about Jesus helpful for you (1:13–22)?
  3. Paul highlighted the goal of the church in 1:28. Write this verse in your own words. What does “mature in Christ” mean based on what you’ve read in Colossians 1?
Go and Do
  • Using Col 1:12-23, discuss with a fellow believer the attributes of Jesus and the centrality of Jesus to the gospel message.
  • Seek out a believer you know and pray the Colossians 1:9–12 prayer for them.
Discipleship Activities