The Message

Colossians 1

11-2 I, Paul, have been sent on special assignment by Christ as part of God’s master plan. Together with my friend Timothy, I greet the Christians and stalwart followers of Christ who live in Colosse. May everything good from God our Father be yours!

Working in His Orchard

3-5 Our prayers for you are always spilling over into thanksgivings. We can’t quit thanking God our Father and Jesus our Messiah for you! We keep getting reports on your steady faith in Christ, our Jesus, and the love you continuously extend to all Christians. The lines of purpose in your lives never grow slack, tightly tied as they are to your future in heaven, kept taut by hope.

5-8 The Message is as true among you today as when you first heard it. It doesn’t diminish or weaken over time. It’s the same all over the world. The Message bears fruit and gets larger and stronger, just as it has in you. From the very first day you heard and recognized the truth of what God is doing, you’ve been hungry for more. It’s as vigorous in you now as when you learned it from our friend and close associate Epaphras. He is one reliable worker for Christ! I could always depend on him. He’s the one who told us how thoroughly love had been worked into your lives by the Spirit.

9-12 Be assured that from the first day we heard of you, we haven’t stopped praying for you, asking God to give you wise minds and spirits attuned to his will, and so acquire a thorough understanding of the ways in which God works. We pray that you’ll live well for the Master, making him proud of you as you work hard in his orchard. As you learn more and more how God works, you will learn how to do your work. We pray that you’ll have the strength to stick it out over the long haul—not the grim strength of gritting your teeth but the glory-strength God gives. It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us.

13-14 God rescued us from dead-end alleys and dark dungeons. He’s set us up in the kingdom of the Son he loves so much, the Son who got us out of the pit we were in, got rid of the sins we were doomed to keep repeating.

Christ Holds It All Together

15-18 We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We look at this Son and see God’s original purpose in everything created. For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. He was there before any of it came into existence and holds it all together right up to this moment. And when it comes to the church, he organizes and holds it together, like a head does a body.

18-20 He was supreme in the beginning and—leading the resurrection parade—he is supreme in the end. From beginning to end he’s there, towering far above everything, everyone. So spacious is he, so roomy, that everything of God finds its proper place in him without crowding. Not only that, but all the broken and dislocated pieces of the universe—people and things, animals and atoms—get properly fixed and fit together in vibrant harmonies, all because of his death, his blood that poured down from the cross.

21-23 You yourselves are a case study of what he does. At one time you all had your backs turned to God, thinking rebellious thoughts of him, giving him trouble every chance you got. But now, by giving himself completely at the Cross, actually dying for you, Christ brought you over to God’s side and put your lives together, whole and holy in his presence. You don’t walk away from a gift like that! You stay grounded and steady in that bond of trust, constantly tuned in to the Message, careful not to be distracted or diverted. There is no other Message—just this one. Every creature under heaven gets this same Message. I, Paul, am a messenger of this Message.

24-25 I want you to know how glad I am that it’s me sitting here in this jail and not you. There’s a lot of suffering to be entered into in this world—the kind of suffering Christ takes on. I welcome the chance to take my share in the church’s part of that suffering. When I became a servant in this church, I experienced this suffering as a sheer gift, God’s way of helping me serve you, laying out the whole truth.

26-29 This mystery has been kept in the dark for a long time, but now it’s out in the open. God wanted everyone, not just Jews, to know this rich and glorious secret inside and out, regardless of their background, regardless of their religious standing. The mystery in a nutshell is just this: Christ is in you, so therefore you can look forward to sharing in God’s glory. It’s that simple. That is the substance of our Message. We preach Christ, warning people not to add to the Message. We teach in a spirit of profound common sense so that we can bring each person to maturity. To be mature is to be basic. Christ! No more, no less. That’s what I’m working so hard at day after day, year after year, doing my best with the energy God so generously gives me.

Neno: Bibilia Takatifu

Wakolosai 1

1Kutoka kwa Paulo, mtume wa Kristo Yesu na Timotheo ndugu yetu. Kwa ndugu katika Kristo, watakatifu na waaminifu waishio Kolosai. Tunawatakieni neema na amani kutoka kwa Mungu Baba yetu.

Shukrani Na Maombi

Siku zote tunamshukuru Mungu, Baba wa Bwana wetu Yesu Kristo, tunapowaombea. Kwa maana tumepata habari juu ya imani yenu katika Kristo Yesu na upendo wenu kwa watu wote wa Mungu. Imani hii na upendo umetokana na tumaini mlilowekewa mbinguni na ambalo mmelisikia katika neno la kweli, yaani Habari Njema. Duniani kote, hii Habari Njema iliyowajia inaenea na kuzaa mat unda kama ilivyokuwa kwenu mlipoisikia na kuelewa neema ya Mungu kwa kina.

Mlijifunza juu ya Habari Njema kutoka kwa mtumishi mwenzenu mpendwa, Epafra. Yeye ni mhudumu mwaminifu wa Kristo ambaye ana fanya kazi kwa niaba yetu, naye ametufahamisha juu ya upendo wenu mliopewa na Roho.

Kwa sababu hii, tangu tuliposikia habari zenu, hatujaacha kuwaombea. Tunamsihi Mungu awape kwa wingi, maarifa ya kujua mapenzi yake, kwa njia ya hekima ya kiroho na ufahamu. 10 Ili mpate kuishi maisha yanayomtukuza Bwana na kumpendeza kabisa: mkizaa matunda kwa kila kazi njema na kukua katika kumjua Mungu. 11 Tunawaombea pia muimarishwe na nguvu zote kwa kadiri ya nguvu ya utukufu wake; mpate kuwa na subira na uvumilivu, huku 12 mkimshukuru kwa furaha Baba aliyewafanya mustahili kuwa na fungu katika urithi wa watakatifu, katika ufalme wa nuru. 13 Kwa maana ametuokoa kutoka katika nguvu za giza, akatuweka katika ufalme wa Mwanae mpendwa, 14 ambaye ametukomboa kwa damu yake, tukapata msamaha wa dhambi.

Ukuu Wa Kristo

15 Kristo anafanana kabisa na Mungu asiyeonekana. Yeye ali kuwepo kabla Mungu hajaumba kitu cho chote. 16 Yeye ndiye ali yeumba vitu vyote mbinguni na duniani; vitu vinavyoonekana na visivyoonekana; kama ni viti vya enzi au nguvu, au watawala au milki na mamlaka: vyote viliumbwa na yeye kwa ajili yake. 17 Yeye alikuwapo kabla ya vitu vingine vyote na kwa uwezo wake vitu vyote vinahusiana kwa mpango. 18 Yeye ni kichwa cha mwili, yaani kanisa lake; naye ni wa kwanza na mzaliwa wa kwanza wa wale wote wanaofufuka kutoka kwa wafu, ili yeye peke yake awe mkuu katika vitu vyote. 19 Kwa kuwa ilimpendeza Mungu kwamba ukamil ifu wake wote wa kimungu uwe ndani ya Mwanae; 20 na kwamba kwa njia ya mwanae vitu vyote vilivyoko duniani na vilivyoko mbinguni vipatanishwe na Mungu, kwa ajili ya damu yake iliyomwagwa msala bani kuleta amani.

21 Hapo kwanza ninyi mlikuwa mmefarakana na Mungu na mlikuwa maadui zake kwa sababu ya mawazo na matendo yenu maovu. 22 Lakini sasa Mungu amewapatanisha naye kwa njia ya mwili wa Kristo katika kifo, ili awaweke mbele yake mkiwa watakatifu, bila doa wala lawama. 23 Lakini hamna budi kuendelea kuwa imara na thabiti katika imani yenu, pasipo kuyumba katika tumaini lililomo katika Injili. Hii ndio ile Injili mliyoisikia na ambayo imetan gazwa kwa kila kiumbe duniani na ambayo mimi, Paulo, nimekuwa mtumishi wake.

Huduma Ya Paulo Kwa Makanisa

24 Na sasa nafurahi kuteseka kwa ajili yenu na kwa mateso yangu ninakamilisha kile ambacho kimepungua katika mateso ya Kristo kwa ajili ya mwili wake, yaani kanisa lake. 25 Mimi nime kuwa mtumishi wa kanisa kufuatana na wajibu niliopewa na Mungu, kuwasilisha kwenu neno la Mungu kwa ukamilifu. 26 Hii ni siri ambayo ilikuwa imefichika kwa karne nyingi na vizazi vingi viliv yopita, lakini sasa imefunuliwa kwa watu wa Mungu. 27 Kwao, Mungu amependa kudhihirisha kati ya mataifa utukufu wa utajiri wa siri hii, yaani, Kristo ndani yenu ndiye tumaini pekee la utu kufu.

28 Kwa sababu hii tunamtangaza Kristo, tukiwaonya na kuwa fundisha watu wote kwa hekima yote ili tuweze kumleta kila mmoja mbele ya Mungu akiwa amekamilika katika Kristo. 29 Kwa shabaha hii nina fanya kazi, nikijitahidi kwa nguvu kuu ya Kristo inay ofanya kazi kwa uwezo mkuu ndani yangu.