English Standard Version
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Greeting

Paul, aan apostle of Christ Jesus bby the will of God, and Timothy cour brother,

To the dsaints and faithful brothers1 in Christ at Colossae:

eGrace to you and peace from God our Father.

Thanksgiving and Prayer

fWe always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of gyour faith in Christ Jesus and of gthe love that you have for all the saints, because of hthe hope ilaid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in jthe word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed kin the whole world it is lbearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you mheard it and understood nthe grace of God in truth, just as you learned it from oEpaphras our beloved pfellow servant.2 He is pa faithful minister of Christ on your3 behalf and has made known to us your qlove in the Spirit.

And so, rfrom the day we heard, swe have not ceased to pray for you, asking that tyou may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all uspiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as vto walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, wfully pleasing to him, xbearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. 11 yMay you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for zall endurance and patience awith joy, 12 bgiving thanks4 to the Father, who has qualified you5 to share in cthe inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He dhas delivered us from ethe domain of darkness and transferred us to fthe kingdom of ghis beloved Son, 1hin whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

The Preeminence of Christ

15 iHe is the image of jthe invisible God, kthe firstborn of all creation. 16 For by6 him all things were created, lin heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether mthrones or ndominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created othrough him and for him. 17 And phe is before all things, and in him all things qhold together. 18 And rhe is the head of the body, the church. He is sthe beginning, tthe firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For uin him all the vfullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and wthrough him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, xmaking peace yby the blood of his cross.

21 zAnd you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, adoing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled bin his body of flesh by his death, cin order to present you holy and blameless and dabove reproach before him, 23 eif indeed you continue in the faith, fstable and steadfast, not shifting from gthe hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed hin all creation7 under heaven, iand of which I, Paul, became a minister.

Paul’s Ministry to the Church

24 Now jI rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh kI am filling up lwhat is lacking in Christ’s afflictions mfor the sake of his body, that is, the church, 25 nof which I became a minister according to othe stewardship from God that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, 26 pthe mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to his saints. 27 qTo them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are rthe riches of the glory of pthis mystery, which is Christ in you, sthe hope of glory. 28 Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that twe may present everyone umature in Christ. 29 For this vI toil, wstruggling xwith all his energy that he powerfully works within me.

ESV

About English Standard Version

The English Standard Version™ is founded on the conviction that the words of the Bible are the very words of God. And because the words themselves—not just the thoughts or ideas—are inspired by God, each word must be translated with the greatest precision and accuracy. As Jesus Himself stressed, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4).

This passion for God’s Word is the driving force behind the translation of the ESV™ Bible. The English Standard Version™ does not try to “improve” on the original in light of today’s culture or by using trendy language. Instead, the utmost care has been taken to express God’s Word in English that most closely captures the meaning of the original, with understandability, beauty, and impact.

Copyright

The Classic Reference Edition, English Standard Version® (ESV®)
Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles,
a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers
All rights reserved.

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version
Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles,
a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers
All rights reserved.

ESV Text Edition: 2011

Book Introductions and Center-Column Cross-Reference System (as adapted) copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. The ESV Cross-Reference System is adapted from the original English Revised Version cross-reference system.

The ESV text may be quoted (in written, visual, or electronic form) up to and inclusive of one thousand (1,000) verses without express written permission of the publisher, providing that the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible nor do the verses quoted account for 50 percent or more of the total text of the work in which they are quoted.

The ESV text may be quoted for audio use (audio cassettes, CD's, audio television) up to two hundred fifty (250) verses without express written permission of the publisher providing that the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible nor do the verses quoted account for 50 percent or more of the total text of the work in which they are quoted.

Notice of copyright must appear as follows on the title page or copyright page of printed works quoting from the ESV, or in a corresponding location when the ESV is quoted in other media:

“Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”

When more than one translation is quoted in printed works or other media, the foregoing notice of copyright should begin as follows:

“Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are from . . . [etc.]”; or,

“Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from . . . [etc.].”

The “ESV” and “English Standard Version” are trademarks of Good News Publishers. Use of either trademark requires the permission of Good News Publishers.

When quotations from the ESV text are used in non-saleable media, such as church bulletins, orders of service, posters, transparencies, or similar media, a complete copyright notice is not required, but the initials (ESV) must appear at the end of the quotation.

Publication of any commentary or other Bible reference work produced for commercial sale that uses the English Standard Version must include written permission for use of the ESV text.

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Permission requests for use within the UK and EU that exceed the above guidelines must be directed to: HarperCollins Religious, 77-85 Fulham Palace Road, Hammersmith, London W6 8JB, England.

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (ESV) is adapted from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. All rights reserved.

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