‘Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus, by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, to the saints and faithful brothers and sisters in Christ in Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father.’
(Colossians 1 v. 1 – 3)
This letter is identified as being written by St. Paul, believed to be whilst under house arrest in Rome, towards the very end of his life / ministry, with Timothy alongside.
Paul describes himself as an ‘apostle’ – one called and sent by God, to establish new congregations, new churches. All of this is God’s will.
And he is writing to the congregation in a town called Colossae. This is the only mention of Colossae in the New Testament, and Colossae is a place you can no longer visit. With a few years, the town was almost completely destroyed by a violent earthquake. Although Colossae had once been a thriving and growing town / city, its renown as a trading place had waned. However, in this town a new church had been planted, by Epaphras, a Colossian who had got to know Paul and the others during their two year stay in nearby Ephesus, establishing the church there.
Paul’s greeting to this significant group of people is one of GRACE and PEACE, not from Paul and Timothy themselves, but directly from God, our Father – the Father of all goodness, grace and peace.
Great start to a letter.
Every place where Christians live, work, worship, is a place where ‘saints and faithful brothers and sisters’ live out the grace and peace of God the Father.
Fellow ‘saints’ and ‘faithful brothers and sisters’, may God our Father speak words of GRACE and PEACE into our lives,
remind us that we are chosen, called and commissioned (sent out) by the will of God,
and enable us to be open to all the promptings of His Spirit, in this season of Easter, Ascension, ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ and Bible Month.
And to Him be the praise and the glory, today and always.