Paul calls employers to pay a just wage. We are to persist in prayer, and to give an answer to anyone who asks about our faith. He gives final instructions. [UPDATED]
VERSE 1. Masters, give to your servants that which is just and equal, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven.
servants. That is, “slaves.”
that which is just and equal. Slave masters were to provide what was just (Greek: “hdikaion”) and equal (“hisotêta”).
After all, masters themselves are responsible to the Lord, their Master in heaven, who treats them fairly.
However, in our day, many Christian employers pay their employees the lowest of wages and find ways to avoid providing benefits.
Continue steadfastly. We Christians are to devote ourselves to prayer. We are to persist in our practice of prayer.
Romans 12:12. rejoicing in hope; enduring in troubles; continuing steadfastly in prayer;
VERSE 3. praying together for us also, that God may open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds,
that God may open to us a door. The Christian is always hoping for an opportunity to speak of Jesus Christ.
to speak. There are lots of things a Christian might talk about. However, the real goal of a Christian is to speak of the Lord Jesus Christ, clearly and confidently.
reveal it as I ought. Paul was eager to speak of Jesus Christ with people. However, many of us Christians are ashamed of Jesus Christ. We do not speak of him. Because of that, we withhold Jesus Christ from people.
redeeming the time. That is, don’t waste your time.
Ephesians 5:16. redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
VERSE 6. Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.
seasoned with salt. How can we “season” our conversation with “salt?” That is, how can we speak of Jesus Christ with people, clearly and confidently? To do that is the ministry of Evangelism.
you ought to answer each one. We are called to be prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks about our faith.
1 Peter 3:15. But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts. Always be ready to give an answer to everyone who asks you a reason concerning the hope that is in you, with humility and fear.
VERSE 7. All my affairs will be made known to you by Tychicus, the beloved brother, faithful servant, and fellow bondservant in the Lord.
Tychicus. He was a leader in the church and the bearer of this letter.
VERSE 8. I am sending him to you for this very purpose, that he may know your circumstances and comfort your hearts,
VERSE 9. together with Onesimus, the faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They will make known to you everything that is going on here.
Onesimus. He was a slave who had ran away from Philemon, and then was converted to faith in Jesus Christ by Paul.
VERSE 10. Aristarchus, my fellow prisoner, greets you, and Mark, the cousin of Barnabas (concerning whom you received commandments, “if he comes to you, receive him”),
Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. Mark was also known as John Mark. He is the famous apostle. And he is the cousin of Barnabas.
VERSE 11. and Jesus who is called Justus. These are my only fellow workers for God’s Kingdom who are of the circumcision, men who have been a comfort to me.
Jesus. In those days, it was a common Jewish name. It was transliterated into Greek as “Joshua.”
VERSE 12. Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, salutes you, always striving for you in his prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.
VERSE 13. For I testify about him that he has great zeal for you, and for those in Laodicea, and for those in Hierapolis.
Luke the beloved physician. This is why Luke is referred to as a medical doctor.
VERSE 15. Greet the brothers who are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the assembly that is in his house.
VERSE 16. When this letter has been read among you, cause it to be read also in the assembly of the Laodiceans, and that you also read the letter from Laodicea.
the letter from Laodicea. This was a letter from Paul to the believers in Laodicea. They forwarded it to the believers in Colossae. Beyond that, we know nothing of this letter.
VERSE 17. Tell Archippus, “Take heed to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you fulfill it.”
with my own hand. In those days, letters were often dictated to a scribe. However, the author might add a greeting in his own hand. Paul did that:
Colossians 4:18. The salutation of me, Paul, with my own hand: remember my bonds. Grace be with you. Amen.
1 Corinthians 16:21. This greeting is by me, Paul, with my own hand.
Galatians 6:11. See with what large letters I write to you with my own hand.
2 Thessalonians 3:17. The greeting of me, Paul, with my own hand, which is the sign in every letter: this is how I write.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.