Colossians 3:1-17

Put On the New Self

1 Therefore if you have been 1raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, 2seated at the right hand of God.
2 3Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.
3 For you have 4died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
4 When Christ, 5who is our life, is revealed, 6then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
5 7Therefore consider 8the members of your earthly body as dead to 9immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
6 For it is because of these things that 10the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience,
7 and 11in them you also once walked, when you were living in them.
8 But now you also, 12put them all aside: 13anger, wrath, malice, slander, and 14abusive speech from your mouth.
9 15Do not lie to one another, since you 16laid aside the old self with its evil practices,
10 and have 17put on the new self who is being 18renewed to a true knowledge 19according to the image of the One who 20created him-
11 a renewal in which 21there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, 22circumcised and uncircumcised, 23barbarian, Scythian, 24slave and freeman, but 25Christ is all, and in all.
12 So, as those who have been 26chosen of God, holy and beloved, 27put on a 28heart of compassion, kindness, 29humility, gentleness and 30patience;
13 31bearing with one another, and 32forgiving each other, whoever * has a complaint against anyone; 33just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.
14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is 34the perfect bond of 35unity.
15 Let 36the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in 37one body; and be thankful.
16 Let 38the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom 39teaching and admonishing one another 40with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, 41singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
17 42Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, 43giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

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Colossians 3:1-17 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO COLOSSIANS 3

This chapter contains exhortations to several duties, some more general, which relate to all Christians, and others more particular, which belong to saints in such and such a state of life. The apostle begins with an exhortation to seek things heavenly, and not earthly, and to set the affections on the one, and not on the other: the arguments used to enforce it are taken from the saints being risen with Christ; from Christ being in heaven at the Father's right hand; from their being dead to sin, the law, and the world; from their having life in Christ safe and secure; yea, from Christ being their life, and their appearance with him in glory, Col 3:1-4. And next he proceeds to an exhortation to the mortification of sin, and the deeds of it, which he urges from the wrath of God coming upon men for these things, and from the consideration of their former state and condition, expressed by walking and living in them, Col 3:5-7, and by a metaphor taken from the putting off and on of garments, he exhorts to the putting off of the old man, with his deeds, several of which are mentioned, Col 3:8,9, and to the putting on of the new man, and to the exercise of various graces, as mercy, meekness, forbearance, forgiveness, charity, and peace, Col 3:10-15. And then he proceeds to exhort to such duties as relate to the word and worship of God; as that the word of Christ should have an abiding place in them, and that they should teach and instruct one another by singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, and do all they did in a religious way, in the name of Christ, with thankfulness to God by him, Col 3:16,17. And closes the chapter with the duties of wives to their husbands, and of husbands to their wives, and of children to their parents, and of parents to their children, and of servants to their masters, Col 3:18-25.

Colossians 3:1-17 In-Context

1 Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
2 Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.
3 For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
4 When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
5 Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
6 For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience,
7 and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them.
8 But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth.
9 Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices,
10 and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him-
11 a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.
12 So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;
13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.
14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.
15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.
16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
17 Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.
18 Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord .
19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be embittered against them.
20 Children, be obedient to your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing to the Lord .
21 Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart.

Cross References 43

  • 1. Colossians 2:12
  • 2. Psalms 110:1; Mark 16:19
  • 3. Matthew 16:23; Philippians 3:19, 20
  • 4. Romans 6:2; 2 Corinthians 5:14; Colossians 2:20
  • 5. John 11:25; Galatians 2:20
  • 6. 1 Corinthians 1:7; 1 John 3:21">Phil 1 John 3:21; 1 Peter 1:13; 1 John 2:28; 1 John 3:2
  • 7. Romans 8:13
  • 8. Colossians 2:11
  • 9. Mark 7:21; 1 Cor 6:9f, 18; 2 Corinthians 12:21; Galatians 5:19; Ephesians 4:19; Ephesians 5:3, 5
  • 10. Romans 1:18; Ephesians 5:6
  • 11. Ephesians 2:2
  • 12. Ephesians 4:22
  • 13. Ephesians 4:31
  • 14. Ephesians 4:29
  • 15. Ephesians 4:25
  • 16. Ephesians 4:22
  • 17. Ephesians 4:24
  • 18. Romans 12:2; 2 Corinthians 4:16; Ephesians 4:23
  • 19. Genesis 1:26; Romans 8:29
  • 20. Ephesians 2:10
  • 21. Romans 10:12; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Galatians 3:28
  • 22. 1 Corinthians 7:19; Galatians 5:6
  • 23. Acts 28:2
  • 24. Ephesians 6:8
  • 25. Ephesians 1:23
  • 26. Luke 18:7
  • 27. Ephesians 4:24
  • 28. Luke 1:78; Galatians 5:22; Philippians 2:1
  • 29. Ephesians 4:2; Philippians 2:3
  • 30. 1 Corinthians 13:4; 2 Corinthians 6:6
  • 31. Ephesians 4:2
  • 32. Romans 15:7; Ephesians 4:32
  • 33. Romans 15:7; Ephesians 4:32
  • 34. Ephesians 4:3
  • 35. John 17:23; Hebrews 6:1
  • 36. John 14:27
  • 37. Ephesians 2:16
  • 38. Romans 10:17; Ephesians 5:26; 1 Thessalonians 1:8
  • 39. Colossians 1:28
  • 40. Ephesians 5:19
  • 41. 1 Corinthians 14:15
  • 42. 1 Corinthians 10:31
  • 43. Ephesians 5:20; Colossians 3:15

Footnotes 19

  • [a]. Or "Be intent on"
  • [b]. Lit "put to death the members which are upon the earth"
  • [c]. Lit "fornication"
  • [d]. Lit "is"
  • [e]. Two early mss do not contain "upon the sons of disobedience"
  • [f]. Or "among these"
  • [g]. Or "Stop lying"
  • [h]. Gr "anthropos"
  • [i]. Lit "renovated"
  • [j]. I.e. those who were not Greeks, either by birth or by culture
  • [k]. I.e. forbearance toward others
  • [l]. Lit "the uniting bond of perfection"
  • [m]. Or "act as arbiter"
  • [n]. Lit "also"
  • [o]. Or "show yourselves thankful"
  • [p]. One early ms reads "the Lord"
  • [q]. Or "in"
  • [r]. Or "one another, singing with psalms..."
  • [s]. Or "by;" lit "in His grace"
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