The gospel message is the grand news about how God’s coming kingdom has been glimpsed and opened up to the world in the birth, teaching, miracles, death and resurrection of God’s son, the Messiah, who will one day return to overthrow evil and consummate the kingdom for eternity.I very much appreciate the eschatological element within this summary, as it is often overlooked, or neglected. Colossians implies an eschatological aspect of the gospel (Col. 1:5, 23). In fact, Luke’s narration of Paul’s presentation to the Athenians (Acts 17:22-31) suggests an eschatological item in the announcement. Thus, we should be weary of appeal’s to Rom. 1:3-4; 1 Cor. 15:1-4; 2 Tim. 2:8 and others as the summary content of Paul’s declaration. There may have been other elements present, which for various reasons, have not been included in the summaries often quoted. Joel Willitts has recently noted this concerning 1 Cor 15:1-8 (See also the comments). Paul nowhere gives us a full description of the gospel that he proclaimed. If Luke’s description in Acts is of any help to us, then we must admit that contextual factors shaped what elements of the gospel Paul highlighted and focussed on, or perhaps even left out! Now of course, central elements of Paul’s “great news of victory” would definitely include the resurrection, but there may be other elements either emphasised or neglected depending on the audience to whom Paul was speaking.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
While this is a comprehensive goal, it is also vague, so the writer proceeds to fill his idea with content. He specifies four elements of the life he is commending or four modes in which it is manifested: bearing fruit in good works, growing in knowledge of God, being empowered by God, and giving thanks.
Sumney, Colossians, pg. 48
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Paul’s faithfulness to his calling (both to preach and to pray) was, in part, a consequence of the devoted intercessions offered by brothers and sisters in Christ. He was held up, buoyed toward heaven, by the supportive petitions of numerous communities dotted throughout the Mediterranean. To this degree, Paul’s urgency was a partial fruit of the communal intensity shared among his many disciples and prayer partners, wedded undoubtedly with a deep sense of mutual responsibility.The advancement of apostolic mission requires and invites prayer from the people of God. It is a necessary feature of Paul’s mission that he asks for those who are faithful to continually pray for him and those with him as they seek to minister to fellow believers, announce the gospel of King Jesus, and establish faithful communities of followers devoted to the King and the kingdom. So pray!
 David Crump, Knocking on Heaven’s Door: A New Testament Theology of Petitionary Prayer, (Baker, 2006) pg. 245
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
The language bearing fruit and growing is reminiscent of the Genesis creation story, where God commands human beings to “be fruitful and increase in number” (Gen. 1:28; see also 1:22). After the flood the mandate is reiterated (Gen. 8:17; 9:1, 7), and the same language is later used in God’s promises to Abraham and the patriarchs that he would “increase” their number and “multiply” their seed (e.g., Gen. 17:20; 28:3; 35:11). The nation Israel attains this blessing in Egypt (Gen. 48:4; Exod. 1:7) but then, or course, suffers judgement and dispersal. So the formula appears again in God’s promises to regather his people after the exile (Jer. 3:16; 23:3). Paul may, then, be deliberately echoing a biblical-theological motif according to which God’s original mandate to humans finds preliminary fulfilment in the nation Israel but ultimate fulfilment in the worldwide transformation of people into the image of God by means of their incorporation into Christ, the “image of God.”
Moo, The Letters to the Colossians and to Philemon, pg. 88
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Monday, March 09, 2009
Friday, March 06, 2009
Thursday, March 05, 2009
Is this accurate? I sure it is, but I've never heard of this before. If so, does anyone know where we may find out more about this?
we have clear archaeological evidence now in regard to houses being altered into church buildings already in the second century in the house of Peter in Capernaum (indeed, this may have transpired beginning in the first century), and we have further evidence of church structures in Jordan, and in Rome, some in the catacombs from before the third century A.D.