Colossians 1:9-12

In Colossians 1:9-12 Paul tells the church how he has been praying for them. What a powerful prayer. He asks that they may be:

  • Filled with knowledge of His will
  • Full of wisdom and understanding
  • Walk with the Lord in way worthy and pleasing
  • Bear fruit
  • Increase in their knowledge of God
  • Strenthened with all power
  • Have endurance
  • Express patience with joy
  • Thankful
  • Share in the inheritance they have as saints

Paul doesn’t just share these things he is praying for. He tells them that he never ceases to pray. “And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to 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.”

Let’s look at these things Paul is praying for. He begins with asking that they would have a knowledge of His will, informed by a true spiritual understanding. To know God and what He requires of us is our first responsibility. Spurgeon explains “If you read this epistle through, you will observe that Paul frequently alludes to knowledge and wisdom. To the point in which be judged the church to be deficient he turned his prayerful attention. He would not have them ignorant. He knew that spiritual ignorance is the constant source of error, instability, and sorrow; and therefore he desired that they might be soundly taught in the things of God.”

Next, Paul prayed that they would live according to the same knowledge they received, living out a walk worthy of the Lord. Our walk is based on our knowledge of God and our understanding of His will. When we walk with the Lord we will bear fruit and show that we are His disciple. Spurgeon shares ” ‘Fruitful in every good work.’ Here is room and range enough – in ‘every good work.’ Have you the ability to preach the gospel? Preach it! Does a little child need comforting? Comfort it! Can you stand up and vindicate a glorious truth before thousands? Do it! Does a poor saint need a bit of dinner from your table? Send it to her. Let works of obedience, testimony, zeal, charity, piety, and philanthropy all be found in your life. Do not select big things as your special he, but glorify the Lord also in the littles – ‘ fruitful in every good work.’ ”

Then Paul talks about being strengthened by all might. Scripture tells us not to live by our might, but by God’s unlimited might. “May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.” He must be our source of power. As we walk worthy of the Lord, His strength is there to help us meet all of life’s challenges, and to endure and overcome problems with circumstances and people patiently and with joy. That is definitely not something we will do on our own. It’s only through God’s might and power we can endure and give thanks!

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