Outlines to Colossians

1.Intervarsity Press

Paul's Greeting (1:1-2)
Paul's Prayer of Thanksgiving (1:3-12)
The Foundation of Faith: God's Grace in Christ (1:13-23)
The New Exodus (1:13-14)
The New Creation (1:15-20)
The New Age (1:21-23)
Paul's Defense of His Ministry (1:23--2:3)
Return to the Bible Gateway

2. Mark Copeland

OUTLINE: INTRODUCTION (1:1-14) 1. Salutation (1-2) 2. Thanksgiving and prayer (3-14) I. THE PREEMINENCE OF CHRIST (1:15-23) A. IN CREATION (1:15-17) 1. The image of the invisible God (1:15a) 2. The first-born over all creation (1:15b-17) B. IN REDEMPTION (1:18-23) 1. The head of the body, the church (1:18a) 2. The beginning, the first-born from the dead (1:18b) 3. That He might have preeminence in all things (1:18c) a. In Whom all the fullness dwells (1:19) b. In Whom all things are to be reconciled to God (1:20) c. The Colossians as a case in point (1:21-23) II. THE APOSTLE OF CHRIST (1:24-2:7) A. PAUL'S SERVICE (1:24-29) 1. His joy in suffering for them (1:24) 2. His ministry (1:25-29) a. A stewardship to proclaim the mystery of God now revealed (1:25-27) b. A labor to present every man perfect in Christ Jesus (1:28-29) B. PAUL'S SOLICITUDE (2:1-7) 1. His great concern for them (2:1-3) 2. Reasons for this concern (2:4-5) 3. Exhortations to be firmly established in Christ (2:6-7) III. WARNINGS AGAINST THE "COLOSSIAN HERESY" (2:8-23) A. WARNING AGAINST PHILOSOPHY (2:8-10) 1. Beware of being cheated by philosophy and empty deceit (2:8) 2. In Christ dwells the fullness of God, and you are complete in Him (2:9-10) B. WARNING AGAINST JUDAISTIC CEREMONIALISM (2:11-17) 1. In Christ you have a circumcision made without hands (2:11-12) 2. You are made alive in Christ, and the handwriting of requirements that was against us has been taken away at the cross (2:13-15) 3. Therefore don't let anyone judge you in regards to food, festivals, or sabbath days (2:16-17) C. WARNING AGAINST ANGEL WORSHIP (2:18-19) 1. Don't let anyone defraud you of your reward by appealing to angel worship and imagined visions of a fleshly mind (2:18) 2. Such people do not hold fast to Christ as the Head, and from whom true divine nourishment comes (2:19) D. WARNING AGAINST ASCETICISM (2:20-23) 1. Having died with Christ to the world, there is no need to submit to human ordinances (2:20-22) 2. While having appearances of wisdom, such practices have no value in controlling the indulgences of the flesh (2:23) IV. THE CHRISTIAN SOLUTION (3:1-4:6) A. SET YOUR MIND ON THINGS ABOVE (3:1-4) 1. Since you were raised with Christ, seek those things above (3:1-2) 2. For you have died and your life is now hidden in Christ, to be revealed when He appears (3:3-4) B. PUT OFF THE OLD MAN (3:5-9) 1. Put to death your members here on the earth, for the wrath of God is coming on the sons of disobedience (3:5-7) 2. Put off the old man with his deeds (3:8-9) C. PUT ON THE NEW MAN (3:10-17) 1. Put on the new man, renewed in the image of our Creator (3:10-11) 2. As God's elect, put on Christ-like qualities (3:12-14) 3. Let God's peace rule in your hearts, and be thankful (3:15) 4. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another with song and singing with grace in your hearts (3:16) 5. Do all things in the name of the Lord Jesus, with thanksgiving (3:17) D. FAMILIAL RESPONSIBILITIES (3:18-4:1) 1. Wives toward their husbands (3:18) 2. Husbands toward their wives (3:19) 3. Children toward their parents (3:20) 4. Fathers toward their children (3:21) 5. Servants toward their masters (3:22-25) 6. Masters toward their servants (4:1) E. EXHORTATIONS TO PRAYER AND PROPER CONDUCT (4:2-6) 1. Devote yourselves to prayer (4:2-4) 2. Walk in wisdom and let your speech be with grace (4:5-6) V. PAUL'S COMPANIONS (4:7-14) A. COMMENDATIONS OF HIS MESSENGERS (4:7-9) 1. Tychicus, a faithful servant who will inform them of Paul's circumstances (4:7-8) 2. Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother (4:9) B. GREETINGS FROM HIS FRIENDS (4:10-14) 1. Aristarchus, Mark, and Justus, fellow workers for the kingdom of God (4:10-11) 2. Epaphras, one of them, and a servant of Christ (4:12-13) 3. Luke the beloved physician, and Demas (4:14) CONCLUSION (4:15-18) 1. Greetings to those in Laodicea, and to Nymphas and the church in his house (4:15) 2. A command to read and exchange the epistles from Paul (4:16) 3. A personal exhortation to Archippus (4:17) 4. A personal signoff from the hand of Paul, with a request for remembrance and a prayer in their behalf (4:18) REVIEW

3. Outline of Colossians Theme: Christ is Preeminent I. DOCTRINE -- Chapter 1 CHRIST'S PREEMINENCE DECLARED 1. In the Gospel message -- 1:1-12 2. In Redemption -- 1:13-14 3. In Creation -- 1:15-17 4. In the Church -- 1:18-23 5. In Paul's ministry -- 1:24-29 II. DANGER -- Chapter 2 CHRIST'S PREEMINENCE DEFENDED 1. Beware of empty philosophies -- 2:1-10 2. Beware of religious legalism -- 2:11-17 3. Beware of man-man disciplines -- 2:18-23 III. DUTY -- Chapter 3 & 4 CHRIST'S PREEMINENCE DEMONSTRATED 1. In personal purity -- 3:1-11 2. In Christian fellowship -- 3:12-17 3. In the home -- 3:18-21 4. In daily work -- 3:22 - 4:1 5. In Christian living -- 4:2-6 6. In Christian service -- 4:7-18 SERMON - - - - - WHO IS JESUS? Colossians 1:15-20 1. The article "One Solitary Life" by George Peck. 2. This passage helps us to see "Who Jesus Is." 3. One of the greatest controversies to range in early church history occurred in the fourth century over this very passage. A man named Arius argued that Jesus was the very first thing that God created, and then Jesus created everything else. He reasoned that, after all, the obvious meaning of "first-born" is the one born first. That led to his conclusion that Jesus was not divine like the Father, but just a created being. a. A brilliant young man named Athanasius soundly rejected that view and the "Arian" doctrine was branded as heresy. The historic view has been that Jesus, because He is the image of God, is eternal just as God the Father Himself is eternal. He is "very God" as Athanasius put it. b. Thought is has been sixteen hundred years since Arius and Athanasius battled it out, the problem has not disappeared. Some religious groups today do not believe that Jesus is God or that He is eternal. 4. WHO IS JESUS? I. JESUS IS THE IMAGE OF GOD (1:15) 15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: (Colossians 1:15) 1. "He is the image of the invisible God" (1:15a) One difficulty people have in believing God is that God cannot be seen. Even as great a man as Moses had the longing to see God. He pleaded with God to just give him a glimpse (See Exodus 33:17-23). 2. The Greek word translated "image" in v. 15 is "eikon." a. Notice the meaning of that word in religious circles. b. Notice how that word is used today in computer circles. c. What do you have on your driver's license? d. Passports in Paul's day had a section called "Dis-tinguishing Marks" that described something about the person that set him apart from everyone else. The Greek word "eikon" was used in that part of the passport. 3. TEV "Christ is the visible likeness of the invisible God." II. JESUS IS THE FULLNESS OF GOD (1:15, 19) 19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell; (Colossians 1:19) "For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily." (Colossians 2:9) 1. Jesus is not something "like" God, He is "everything" God IS! 2. Hebrews 1:3 "He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature..." 3. All of the attributes of divinity belong of Jesus, He IS God. III. JESUS IS THE AGENT OF GOD (1:16) 16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: (Colossians 1:16) 1. The word "for" means is in the sense "because." By Him, Jesus, all things were created. HE was not created, He CREATED! 2. "Before Jesus the carpenter made stools, Jesus the Creator made stars." He fashioned plows, He fashioned planets. Before He made tables, He made trees from which those tables would be made. 3. He also made all the invisible things of our universe. IV. JESUS IS THE HEAD OF GOD'S CHURCH (1:18-23) 18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. (Colossians 1:18) 1. From Jesus comes all the guidance and direction for the church. a. The "doctrine" is "His doctrine" (Heb. 6:1; 2 John 1:9) b. He is not just "first" but the "Source." 2. Jesus was the first to rise never to die again. 3. Over What was He to have the preeminence? All things! Creation, powers, the church, death... Why was he to have the preeminence? For in Him the sum total of the powers and attributes of God dwell. V. JESUS IS THE PEACE-MAKER BETWEEN MAN AND GOD 20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. 21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled (Col. 1:20-21).


4. Daniel Wallace

III. Outline

I. Salutation (1:1-2)

II. Orthodoxy: The Sufficiency of Christ Explained (1:3Ė2:7)

    A. Thanksgiving and Prayer for the Colossians (1:3-14)

      1. Thanksgiving for the Colossiansí Faith (1:3-8)

      2. Prayer for the Colossiansí Knowledge and Growth (1:9-14)

    B. Hymn to Christ the Lord (1:15-20)

    C. Affirmation of Christ the Reconciler (1:21-23)

    D. Paulís Commission concerning the Mystery of Christ (1:24Ė2:7)

      1. Paulís Past Labors Aimed at Perfection in Christ (1:24-29)

      2. Paulís Present Concern regarding Defection from Christ (2:1-7)

III. Heterodoxy: The Sufficiency of Christ Denied (2:8Ė3:4)

    A. The Sufficiency of Christ Restated (2:8-15)

      1. Statement against Heretics (2:8)

      2. Restatement of Christís Sufficiency (2:9-15)

        a. Christ our Authority (2:9-10)

        b. Christ our Power (2:11-12)

        c. Christ our Victor (2:13-15)

    B. The Colossiansí Practices as a Denial of the Sufficiency of Christ (2:16-19)

    C. The Colossiansí Practices as a Contradiction of their Corporate Life in Christ (2:20Ė3:4)

      1. Death with Christ Means Death to Human Regulations (2:20-23)

      2. Resurrection with Christ Means New Perspective (3:1-4)

IV. Orthopraxy: The Sufficiency of Christ Experienced (3:5Ė4:6)

    A. Experienced Individually (3:5-17)

      1. Negative: Putting off the Old Man (3:5-11)

      2. Positive: Putting on the New Man (3:12-17)

    B. Experienced in the Home (3:18Ė4:1)

      1. Wives and Husbands (3:18-19)

      2. Children and Parents (3:20-21)

      3. Slaves and Masters (3:22Ė4:1)

    C. Experienced in Relation to Others (4:2-6)

      1. In Relation to Paul (4:2-4)

      2. In Relation to Unbelievers (4:5-6)

V. Final Greetings (4:7-18)

    A. Commendation of Tychicus (4:7-9)

    B. Greetings from Paulís Co-Workers (4:10-14)

    C. Greetings from Paul (4:15-18)

5. New American Bible Introduction

  1. Address (Col 1:1-14)
  2. The Preeminence of Christ (Col 1:15-2:3)
  3. Warnings against False Teachers (Col 2:4-23)
  4. The Ideal Christian Life in the World (Col 3:1-4:6)
  5. Conclusion (Col 4:7-18)


6, Maranatha Church, Inc.Outline

7. Epistle to the Colossians

Brief Outline http://www.mb-soft.com/believe/txs/colossia.htm

  1. Salutation and thanksgiving (1:1-8)
  2. Doctrinal section (1:9-2:5)
  3. Practical exhortations (2:6-4:6)
  4. Concluding salutations (4:7-18)

8. Quartz Hill School of Theology http://www.theology.edu/ntintro/col.htm

       As the reader can tell, we have momentarily left the canonical order in our discussion of its writings. For, as all know, Philippians follows Ephesians. But because Ephesians and Colossians are both considered pseudonymous by NT scholars, and because they are so extraordinarily similar in content, character, and purpose, it seem appropriate to consider them both in close proximity.
       The letter to the Colossians was written by a student of Paulís who lived in Ephesus and wrote around 80 CE. Colossae was a major city located in the Lycus River valley in Phrygia in the province of Asia Minor. The church there was established, not by Paul, but by an associate of his, Epaphras.
       The purpose of this letter is identical to the purpose of Ephesians (which see, above). This has led some to suggest that there may have been a certain group of Paulinists (disciples of Paul) who associated together and shared many of the same ideas and theological perspectives. This is certainly a possibility, though there is no way to demonstrate it. One of the more interesting aspects of Colossians is the very old hymn found in 1:15-20. This hymn must have been in widespread use among the Christians of the early Church.
       An outline shows the similarity to Ephesians:


1- Greeting (1:1-2)
2- The Lordship of Christ (1:3-23)
3- The Mystery of Christ (1:24-2:5)
4- Christís Lordship (Revisited) (2:6-23)
5- Ethical Admonition (3:1-4:6)
6- Farewell Remarks (4:7-18)

ASSIGNMENT: Read Philippians and Brownís

9. Catholic Doors Ministry

 1:1-1:2     Salutation
 1:3-1:14    Paul Thanks God for the Colossians
 1:15-1:23   The Supremacy of Christ
 1:24-2:5    Paul's Interest in the Colossians

 2:6-2:19    Fullness of Life in Christ
 2:20-2:23   Warnings against False Teachers    

 3:1-3:17    The New Life in Christ
 3:18-4:1    Rules for Christian Households

 4:2-4:6     Further Instructions
 4:7-4:18    Final Greetings and Benediction



A Liturgy, A Legacy and a Ragamuffin Man - Overview of Colossians; 1:1-12

(Distribute and discuss handouts on An Overview of Colossians and An Overview of Paulís Ministry.)

Outline of the Letter

I. Introduction (1:1-14)

A. Greetings (1:1-2)

B. Thanksgiving (1:3-8)

C. Prayer (1:9-14)

II. The Supremacy of Christ (1:15-23)

III. Paulís Labor for the Church (1:24-2:7)

A. A ministry for the sake of the church (1:24-29)

B. A concern for the spiritual welfare of

his readers (2:1-7)

IV. Freedom from Human Regulations through

Life with Christ (2:8-23)

A. Warning to guard against false teachers (2:8-15)

B. Pleas to reject the false teachers (2:16-19)

C. An analysis of the heresy (2:20-23)

V. Rules for Holy Living (3:1-4:6)

A. The old self and the new self (3:1-17)

B. Rules for Christian households (3:18-4:1)

C. Further instructions (4:2-6)

VI. Final Greetings (4:7-18)

11. Dr. Grant Richison Campus Crusades

* Outline of the Book of Colossians:
Preliminary statements, 1:1-2
Pre-eminence of Christ, 1:3-2:3
Polemic against error, 2:4-3:4
Practical exhortations, 3:5-4:6
Personal messages, 4:7-17

12. http://rgfn.epcc.edu/users/av568/15p3.html


Outline of the letter:


	Introduction/Salutation (1:1,2)

	I. Paul's thanksgiving prayer. (1:3-14)
		A. Thanks God for their faith. (3-8)
		B. Prays that they continue and grow in this faith. (9-14) 
	II. Christ is Lord of all things. (1:15-29)
		A. Creation. (15-17)
		B. The Church. (18)
			1. Reconciles the believers to God. (19-22)
			2. Paul's task is to proclaim this reconciliation. (23-29)
	III. Christ is the antidote to false teaching. (2:1-23)
		A. Paul's concern for the Colossians. (1-5)
		B. Christ is all they need. (6-15)
			1. Christ is God. (6-9)
			2. Christ gives victory over sin. (10-15)
		C. They don't need more laws. (16-19)
			1. Old. (16,17)
			2. Or new! (18,19)   
			3. They are useless! (20-23)
	IV. The true Christian life. (3:1-4:6)
		A. Believers rise with Christ. (3:1-4)
		B. Believers put sins to death. (5-11)
		C. Believers wear good works. (12-17)
		D. Believers subject themselves to God's will for human 
			relationships. (18-4:1)
			1. Wives to husbands; husbands to wives. (18,19)
			2. Children to parents; parents to children. (20,21)
			3. Slaves to masters; masters to slaves. (22-4:1)
	E. Believers are always on their guard. (4:2-6)
			1. Praying. (2-4)
			2. Being careful towards unbelievers. (5,6)
	V. Personal messages. (4:7-17)

	Closing blessing. (4:18)


      I. Doctrinal: The Person and Work of Christ (1:1-2:3)

        A. Introduction (1:1-14)

          1. Paulís Greeting to the Colossians (1:1-2)

          2. Paulís Gratitude for the Colossiansí Faith (1:3-8)

          3. Paulís Prayer for the Colossiansí Growth (1:9-14)

        B. The Person of Christ (1:15-18)

          1. In Relation to the Father (1:15)

          2. In Relation to the Creation (1:16-17)

          3. In Relation to the New Creation (1:18)

        C. The Work of Christ (1:19-2:3)

          1. The Description of His Work (1:19-20)

          2. The Application of His Work (1:21-23)

          3. The Propagation of His Work (1:24-2:3)

      II. Polemical: The Heretical Problems in Light of Union With Christ (2:4-3:4a)

        A. The Exhortation Against False Teaching (2:4-8)

          1. Exhortation Regarding the Methods of False Teachers (2:4-5)

          2. Exhortation to Progress in the Life of Faith (2:6-7)

          3. Exhortation Regarding the Philosophy of the False Teachers (2:8)

        B. The Instruction of the True Teaching (2:9-15)

          1. The Believerís Position in Christ (2:9-10)

          2. The Believerís Circumcision (2:11-12)

          3. The Believerís Benefits (2:13-15)

        C. The Obligations of the True Teaching (2:16-3:4)

          1. Negative: Emancipation from Legalistic and Gnostic Practices (2:16-19)

          2. Negative: Emancipation from Ascetic Ordinances (2:20-23)

          3. Positive: Aspirations for the Heavenly Life (3:1-4)

      III. Practical: The Practice of the Believer in Christ (3:5-4:6)

          1. In the Inward Life (3:5-17)

          2. In the Home and Household Life (3:18-4:1)

          3. In the Outward Life (4:2-6)

      IV. Personal: The Private Plans and Affairs of the Apostle (4:7-18)

          1. His Special Representatives (4:7-9)

          2. His Personal Salutations (4:10-18)