Colossians 1:23

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Steven2006, Jul 1, 2006.

  1. Steven2006

    Steven2006
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    This is a verse I have always have had trouble with. When read in context with verse twenty-two is seems to imply a person could lose their salvation. Every commentary or study that I have read that would explain it, says that "if" actually means "when", so it is assuming everyone will. My question is, if it really should be translated as "when", why does every translation I have read says "if". Why wouldn't they just translate it to "when" if that is really correct? Even Strongs seems to imply it is "if" when I look up that word. Thanks in advance for your replies.
     
  2. Hope of Glory

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    Well, it is "if", but why do you think this applies to being saved or not?
     
  3. J. Jump

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    Steven this passage has nothing to do with eternal salvation. It is fine and proper to leave the verse as it reads with the "if." This is speaking of the believers inheritance, which is to rule and reign with Christ in the 1,000-year kingdom, which is the next age and the last age prior to eternity.

    It is quite possible (and actually a great number of believers will despise their inheritance like Esau and Reuben) for one to lose their inheritance. That's why the if is there. Eternal salvation is based solely on the works of Another, and inheritance is based on you and I dying to self and allowing the Spirit to live out the life of Jesus in our members (walking in the Spirit).

    IF we continue to do this then we will receive our inheritance. IF we do not then we will lose our inheritance.

    Hope that helps. If you want to study the matter out further PM.
     
  4. Steven2006

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    It sounds that way.

    Verse 22: yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach- vs23
    if indeed you continue in the faith firmly established and steadfast, and not moved away from hope of the gospel that you have heard. which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, was made a minister.
     
  5. Hope of Glory

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    If you look on down a few verses, it's talking about the "hope of glory", not spiritual salvation.
     
  6. Scarlett O.

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    vs 22...He has now reconciled you...period. Once a person becomes a believer, that's it. There are no more clauses, loopholes, other ways to heaven, other ways to hell, or a juggling back and forth of salvation.

    vs 23....well....what is the opposite of verse 23? It's this... "if you are NOT firmly grounded and settled in the faith".

    To me, that means not being saved in the first place.

    To me, these two verses are saying that Jesus reconciles those who are grounded in the faith (saved) to make them presentable to the Father.

    All Christians go through doubting spells in their lives and times of "returning like a dog to it's vomit" with particular sins that plague them. To take this verse in the context that you are reading into it, I would have to believe that just one little slip of the faith....just one kernel of painfully asking, "where is God when I need him right now"...

    ...just one little flicker of sin would alienate a believer's assurance in the salvation of Christ. In that case, brother, we are ALL going straight to hell and there will be NO one in heaven at all.

    The apostle Paul writes in HUGE sentences broken in subordinate clauses and phrases and sometimes talking about several things in just one sentence.

    In this chapter of Colossians, I believe that verses 21-29 make up one sentence. It's best not to pick apart just one portion of a sentence without examing the sentence as a whole.
     
  7. J. Jump

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    But eternal salvation is not the context of the passage and so not being saved or being saved is not in view.
     
  8. Steven2006

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    Please explain to me how verse twenty-two is not talking about salvation?
     
  9. Steven2006

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    Hi Scaelett,
    You said, "if you are NOT firmly grounded and settled in the faith".

    But it clearly says "if indeed you continue in the faith".
     
  10. Scarlett O.

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    :saint: Go back and read very carefully.

    I said, "What the opposite of verse 23......." The opposite would be if a person is NOT grounded in the faith which implies to me not being saved.

    I do not see verses 22 and 23 as mutually exclusive. The "if" is not an "if-then".

    I don't read it as saying Jesus paid the price for your soul, but be careful not to mess up or He with throw your soul in the junk heap.

    I read it as saying Jesus paid the price for your soul. You can never pay Him back, but be sure to live your life in an earnest attempt to please Him and obey Him.
     
  11. Marcia

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    I certainly don't see how this passage has anything to do with ruling in the millenial kingdom or gaining or losing an inheritance. The Bible says when we believe, we are heirs with Christ. All believers are heirs.
    Do you belong to Christ? You do if you are saved. So you are an heir.
     
  12. J. Jump

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    Because it is an "if you" statement. IF YOU have to do anything then the context is not speaking of eternal salvation. Keep that in mind when reading Scripture and you will save yourself a lot of interpretational error.

    If I am required to do anything then the context is not eternal salvation, because eternal salvation is SOLELY based on the works of Another done on your behalf.

    I'm guessing that you didn't read all the Scriptures you gave, but just saw the buzz word and typed it in.

    1. Rom. 8.17: and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.
    You can't leave out the conditional statement made. Inheritance is not based on eternal salvation it is based on us doing something. If we suffer then we will reign (II Corinthians).

    Galatians 3:29
    And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's descendants, heirs according to promise.

    Some will cry Lord, Lord on that day, but Christ will say depart from me ye workers of iniquity. They didn't belong to Christ, because they weren't doing the will of the Father. If you do the will of the Father then you belong to Christ.

    You have picked out a verse of Scripture to make it say what you want it to say. There are several reasons why this is not saying that all saved people are going to end up heirs. First of all inheritance is something that can be forfeited as per Esau and Reuben. Christians while they may be heirs can forfeit their inheritance.

    Secondly Ephesians is written to those who are faithful. Not all Christians are faithful unfortunately.

    would be made is a subjunctive verb and means it may or may not happen. It is not a certainty. Why is that? Because not all will be made heirs. Wide is the way that leads to destruction, but narrow and few be that find the way that leads to life. That's not talking about eternal salvation.
     
  13. Steven2006

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    J. Jump, Thanks for your replies, but I am sorry I still cannot see where this portion of scripture is not addressing salvation. Even if you go back further to verses 13&14, the entire section seems to be about salvation.

    vs13: For He delivered us from the domain of darkness. and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, vs14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

    Then also read verses 19-22, the entire context in my opinion is salvation.

    vs 19: For it was the Father's good pleasure, for all the fulness to dwell in Him, vs20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say. whether things on earth or things in heaven. vs21 And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, vs22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach-
     
  14. James_Newman

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    Steven, the problem is that modern Christianity has neglected the truth of the millennial reign of Christ on earth and has taken all the passages dealing with this kingdom and applied them to the common salvation that we obtained at the beginning through faith alone.

    Colossians 1:21-23
    21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled
    22 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblamable and unreprovable in his sight:
    23 If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;

    Being reconciled in verse 21 is a present truth. We are reconciled to God through His blood. Being presented holy, unblamable, unreprovable in His sight is a future hope, conditioned upon us continuing in the faith. All who are reconciled will not meet the condition. The majority of the passages in the bible that we have been told are dealing with 'true believers and false professors' are dealing with those who have been reconciled to God by the blood, and whether or not they obtain the additional blessings that are promised to those who will overcome. Jesus said that whosoever believed would be raised up on the last day. But there is a kingdom age of 1000 years before this day, when we are told that if we suffer, we will also be allowed to reign with Him. Not all believers will be given this prize, even though the grace has been provided for all believers to overcome.

    When we deal with the issue of salvation, we have the added burden of defining what we mean by salvation. There is more than one type of salvation spoken of in the bible. What JJump and I mean when we say salvation is usually the resurrection on the last day, which is the free gift. Being found worthy of the first resurrection, when the overcoming saints are raised to rule in the millennium is also called 'salvation', it is not the same thing. One salvation is free to all who will believe, the other is by continuing in faith and obedience to God.
     
  15. J. Jump

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    Well first of all go back and see who the book is addressed to. It was written to To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are at Colossae. That's our first, but not only clue. This was written to believers.

    Notice something else in chapter 1:

    because of the hope R12 laid R13 up for you in heaven, F6 of which you previously heard R14 in the word of truth, the F7 gospel 6 which has come to you, just as in R15 F8 all the world also it is constantly bearing fruit R16 and increasing, F9 even as it has been doing in you also since the day you heard R17 of it and understood F10 the grace of God in truth;

    Eternal salvation is not a hope. It is a certainty. The word of truth, the gospel is not talking about the gospel of eternal salvation, but the gospel that Christ rose again the third day according to Scriptures and that we are able to rule and reign with Him. That is the hope that is laid up for us in heaven.

    Notice again the works involved talking about bearing fruit and increasing. That context is not eternal salvation because works are not involved.

    And later in chapter 1:

    so that you will walk R25 in a manner worthy of the Lord, to R26 F12 please Him in all respects, bearing R27 fruit in every good work and increasing F13 in the knowledge F14 of God;

    Again works involved. Works = no eternal salvation as context.

    For F20 He rescued us from the domain R33 F21 of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His R34 F22 beloved Son, 14 in R35 whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

    The domain of darkness means that he has rescued us from Satan's current domain and aligned them with His coming kingdom. Maybe Hope of Glory will post a great teaching on the meaning of this and how it is shown in the OT through Saul and David. He has posted it before, but I just can't remember where.

    Again the kingdom is the context, not eternal salvation.

    In chapter 2 he tells them they have already been saved and now it is time to focus on something beyond that:

    Therefore as you have received Christ R93 Jesus the Lord, so walk R94 F46 in Him, 7 having been firmly rooted R95 and now being built R96 up in Him and established R97 in F47 your faith, just as you were R98 instructed, and overflowing with F48 gratitude.

    The context goes on to focus on their life after salvation and carrys on into chapter 3.

    That's just a brief look, but hopefully that will help. But again the key is the IF statement. IF YOU have to do anything that is an automatic trigger that says eternal salvation is not the picture. it doesn't matter whether we understand it or not this is a reminder that we must seek a different avenue, becuase eternal salvation will not fit unless Scripture is twisted to force man's ideas.

    Again IF YOU or IF I have to do ...... fill in the blank eternal salvation is not the picture.
     
  16. Pipedude

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    Steven, I agree with you regarding the apparent meaning of this text, and many others have believed the same throughout history as well. If you are not satisfied with the OSAS answers you get here, you're in good company.

    But then, if you ARE satisfied with them, you're in good company there, too.

    It's hard to avoid good company. We're everywhere. :love2:
     
  17. Steven2006

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    Well, I think I am now more confused about it than before I posted. I think I will have to really do some more prayer and study on this. Thank you all for taking the time, and for everyone's answers. You gave me much to think about. I look forward to anyone else's input on these scriptures.
     
  18. Hope of Glory

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    [Colossians 1:13-14: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: ] Many people erroneously think they enter the Kingdom at the moment they are born from above. We have been looking at this passage for a few weeks now, and I want us to look at it again in this context.

    As we’ve already looked at, it is just simply not possible for Christians to enter into the Kingdom at present. Why is that? Because Satan and his angels currently rule this Kingdom. Jesus Christ and his co-heirs will not occupy and rule in this Kingdom until some point in the future. This is consistent with all teaching of Scripture that has anything to do with the subject.

    The word that is translated as “translated” has to do with change. It means “transfer” or “move”. 1 Corinthians 13:2 talks about moving a mountain. Luke 16:4 talks about removing from an office.

    [Acts 13:22: And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will. ] Comparing Colossians 1:13 with Acts 13:22 will help us get an understanding of what is involved in a person being transferred or moved. In Acts 13:22 (which is drawing from 1 Samuel), Saul had been rejected [it says that he had been “removed”], and God then raised up David to be king in Israel.

    But, did Saul step down immediately? No, Saul remained in power as king until his death, and his rejection [his “removal” though still seated on the throne] was God's announcement that his days as king were numbered. Saul would one day be put down, and another would then ascend the throne (David). God would remove Saul from power and place David in power, in complete keeping with Daniel 4:17-32.

    After Saul had been rejected, although he was still occupying the throne, God singled out David and instructed Samuel to anoint him king in Saul’s place. Although he was anointed king in Saul’s stead, David didn't immediately ascend the throne. Although Saul was rejected, he continued to reign. During this time, David found himself rejected in a different sense (by man, not God), exiled, and passing through a time of trials and sufferings.

    During this time, a number of individuals who were dissatisfied with existing conditions in the kingdom under Saul, left Saul's kingdom and associated themselves with David. In doing this, they found themselves occupying exactly the same position in which David found himself during this time; they were rejected, exiled, and passing through a time of trials and sufferings.

    The band of men who had left the kingdom under Saul and had associated themselves with David simply changed positions, and this is what we’re talking about in Colossians 1:13. There was no existing kingdom under David in which these men found themselves, just as there is no existing kingdom under Christ in which Christians presently find themselves. In David's day, Saul still occupied the throne, just as Satan continues to occupy the throne today. David was waiting to ascend the throne, just as Christ is presently waiting to ascend the throne. Those who had joined themselves to David had been moved into a new position (from the kingdom under Saul, anticipating the kingdom under David) in order to share David's glory in a coming day, and those who have joined themselves to Christ have been moved into a new position (from the kingdom under Satan, anticipating the kingdom under Jesus Christ) in order to share in his glory in that coming day.

    I want us to pay attention to the purpose for this interim in the type during David's day; a time during which David could acquire the necessary rulers to hold positions of power with him when he took the kingdom. For every type, there is an antitype. In the antitype, the purpose for the interim is exactly the same; it is a time during which Jesus Christ can acquire the necessary rulers to hold positions of power with Him when He takes the Kingdom.

    So, relative to this, Acts 13:22 forms the type (actually, it restates the type from 1 Samuel), and Colossians 1:13 the antitype. Types with their corresponding antitypes always have to be understood and interpreted exactly the same way. The move in Colossians 1:13 can only be a move from an association with the power and authority which Satan presently exercises in his kingdom into an association with the rejected position presently hold by the King who will one day replace Satan. It has nothing to do with a move into a position where the King already exercises power and authority, but this is what many people erroneously believe and teach. The type doesn't allow understanding the verse in this manner. Though the move in the type had to do with regality, it could not be brought to pass until a future day. And matters in the antitype must be understood after exactly the same fashion as seen in the type.

    Although the Kingdom is literal and future and not something that is merely spiritual, we are spiritually following our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, just as those who surrounded David followed him, even though they were still in a Kingdom that was ruled by Saul. And we are awaiting that glorious day when our King will ascend the throne, just as David’s men were awaiting the day that he would ascend the throne.
     
  19. Steven2006

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    I appreciate all the responses to date, you have given my a lot to think about. After more reading, prayer, and study, I have to say I am still convinced that these passages are talking about salvation. I still have a curiosity about the word "IF" in verse 23, but I am more satisfied with explanations about what that might really mean in the Greek. That "if" really should be interpreted as "since" and that it is meant to imply determined and fulfilled. Of course that brings me back to my original question. Why not just translate it as "since" instead of "if"? But so far I am more satisfied with this reasoning.

    I would be interested in other peoples input on this, anyone else every study this passage, what did you conclude?
     
  20. Hope of Glory

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    It's a conditional statement that can be assuming fulfillment, so "since" could be quite acceptable here.

    Let me ask you a question: Do you think the Bible contradicts itself?
     

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