eGrace to you and peace from God our Father.
Thanksgiving and Prayer
3 fWe always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 since we heard of gyour faith in Christ Jesus and of gthe love that you have for all the saints, 5 because of hthe hope ilaid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in jthe word of the truth, the gospel, 6 which has come to you, as indeed kin the whole world it is lbearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you mheard it and understood nthe grace of God in truth, 7 just as you learned it from oEpaphras our beloved pfellow servant.2 He is pa faithful minister of Christ on your3 behalf 8 and has made known to us your qlove in the Spirit.
9 And so, rfrom the day we heard, swe have not ceased to pray for you, asking that tyou may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all uspiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as vto walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, wfully pleasing to him: xbearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 ybeing strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for zall endurance and patience awith joy; 12 bgiving thanks4 to the Father, who has qualified you5 to share in cthe inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He dhas delivered us from ethe domain of darkness and transferred us to fthe kingdom of ghis beloved Son, 14 hin whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
The Preeminence of Christ
15 iHe is the image of jthe invisible God, kthe firstborn of all creation. 16 For by6 him all things were created, lin heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether mthrones or ndominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created othrough him and for him. 17 And phe is before all things, and in him all things qhold together. 18 And rhe is the head of the body, the church. He is sthe beginning, tthe firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For uin him all the vfullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and wthrough him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, xmaking peace yby the blood of his cross.
21 zAnd you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, adoing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled bin his body of flesh by his death, cin order to present you holy and blameless and dabove reproach before him, 23 eif indeed you continue in the faith, fstable and steadfast, not shifting from gthe hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed hin all creation7 under heaven, iand of which I, Paul, became a minister.