christine's bible study

The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever. Isa 40:8

colossians 1, that which bears fruit

Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.

Colossians 1:10

Read Colossians 1 at Bible Gateway.

Most of Colossians 1 forms a single chiastic structure, which is posted here.

The 1A pair of the larger structure forms its own smaller chiastic structure

Col 1:5-10
1a) Col 1:5-6, The word of the truth of the gospel + which is bringing forth fruit;
1b) Col 1:6, Since the day you heard of the grace of God;
central axis) Col 1:7-8, Epaphras, the faithful minister of Christ;
2b) Col 1:9, Since the day we heard it (your faith in Christ Jesus);
2a) Col 1:9-10, Be filled with the knowledge of His will + fruitful in every good work (chiasm).

The matching A pairs are comparing the fruitfulness of the word of the truth of the gospel (what is the gospel? That righteousness is of faith) with the fruitfulness of the good works of the Colossians. In other words, believing by faith through grace to righteousness is on one side, and knowing His will and doing the good works of it is on the other side.

These really are matching pairs, because it is not faith vs. works or grace vs. law (the knowledge of His will), but faith and works, and grace and law. (Works do not save (justification). But works are the fruit produced by the saved (sanctification).) They are two sides of the same coin. The word of the truth of the gospel bears the fruit of salvation when it is preached. It is a seed, and that is its fruit. In turn the changed nature that is the result of salvation, bears the fruit of good works and obedience to the will of God from the heart. It is likewise a seed, and that is its fruit.

The 2a pair also forms a smaller chiastic structure still:

Col 1:9-10
1a) Col 1:9, May you be filled with the knowledge of His will in wisdom + spiritual understanding;
1b) Col 1:10a, That you may walk worthy of the Lord,
central axis) Col 1:10b, Fully pleasing Him;
2b) Col 1:10c, Being fruitful in every good work
2a) Col 1:10d, And increasing in the knowledge of God.

God delights in us when we believe Him and place our faith in Him. And our obedience to Him also fully pleases Him, just as any good father is pleased by their children when they believe the truth of his teaching, and act accordingly. This is why I read the Torah tuned in to the power of the Spirit, to increase in the knowledge of His will in all spiritual understanding.

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