Paul writes this letter toward the end of his life. He is imprisoned (most likely in Rome) and composes this letter and two others, Ephesians and Philemon. The church in Colossae most likely started during Paul’s three-year ministry in Ephesus (A.D. 52–55). During this time, it is probable that a Colossian named Epaphras traveled to Ephesus and responded to Paul’s proclamation of the Gospel. He then returned to his hometown to share the Good News of Christ with his people, which resulted in the birth of the Colossian church (Colossians 1:17). At the time of writing (c. A.D. 62), Epaphras is in Rome visiting Paul in prison and has likely shared the bad news that false teaching is infiltrating the church (4:12). Never having met them personally, Paul writes this letter with Timothy to address this dangerous situation and to encourage these believers to grow toward Christian maturity in the truth of Jesus Christ.
“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:13–14, ESV)
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