Lost Book of the Bible? Colossians 3-4

In the third chapter of the Book of Colossians, Paul clearly spells out that idolatry is still just as much of a problem today as it ever has been. In verse five, he tells them some of the things that Christians must do in their walk with God:

Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.

But he doesn’t stop there. He says that we must “put them all away,” meaning those things that make us less like Christ — such as anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk. Swearing “like a sailor” seems to getting more and more acceptable among some who consider themselves to be Christians. Clearly, this goes against the teachings of the Bible.

Along a main inland road from Ephesus to the Euphrates River, Colossae shared the beauty of the Lycus Valley with its sister cities Hierapolis. The original roads from Ephesus and Sardis joined there, and this defensible and well-watered hill became a strategic point in antiquity. Declining in importance by the time of Paul's Epistle to them, they had already been surpassed in size by the other Lycus Valley cities.

Along a main inland road from Ephesus to the Euphrates River, Colossae shared the beauty of the Lycus Valley with its sister cities Hierapolis. The original roads from Ephesus and Sardis joined there, and this defensible and well-watered hill became a strategic point in antiquity. Declining in importance by the time of Paul’s Epistle to them, they had already been surpassed in size by the other Lycus Valley cities.

In chapter four, there is a passage that has become the subject of much discussion, and even has fueled theories of “lost books” of the Bible. Verse 16 says:

And when this letter has been read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans; and see that you also read the letter from Laodicea.

So the talk goes among some scholars that the Book that was the letter to Laodicea is los to us — possibly in one of the earthquakes of the period. The first thing this writer has to say about that is “can anyone seriously believe that God would allow such a thing to happen?” I think not.

Despite claims to the contrary by skeptics, the integrity of the Bible’s translations and how it compares from manuscripts of different periods is so amazing that it is unrivaled by any secular work. Secondly, this same verse demonstrates that Paul’s letters were circulated among the churches for their edification.

Exactly which letter the Laodiceans had is something else that is much debated. But in verse 17, Paul speaks of Archippus. The only other book in which Archippus is mentioned is Philemon, which gives credence to the belief some have that Paul’s letter to Philemon is actually the letter that the Laodiceans had.

 

 

/Bob’s boy

Bible Reading Schedule for this month
Click links below to read or listen to audio of one of this week’s chapters in Colossians and Luke

Col. 1, Col. 2, Col. 3, Col. 4, Luke 1

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some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please visit this site’s menu item “The Author’s Books” for info on the author’s books, website, and Facebook page.

All of my comments in this blog are solely my responsibility. When reading any commentary, you should always refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word.

 

 

 

 

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