Colosse was a city of Phrygia located about one hundred miles east of Ephesus. It was near Laodicea and Hierapolis originally on a trade route between Ephesus and the Euphrates River Valley. As those nearby cities increased in importance, Colosse decreased.
It is thought that Epaphras was mainly responsible for establishing the Colossian church as well as churches in Laodicea and Hierapolis. Evidently Epaphras had reported to Paul that members of the Colossian church were teaching some of the old Jewish and pagan doctrines. They denied that Christ was supreme and taught the worship of angels.
This letter was probably written from Rome about A.D. 62 at the same time as Ephesians and Philemon were written and was delivered by Tychicus and Onesimus. Its purpose was to make the supremacy of Christ in the church clear to the Colossians.
Paul began the Colossian letter in his usual style. He established his identity and authority as an apostle of Jesus Christ and acknowledged the presence of Timothy with him in Rome. It was also his practice to greet the recipients of his writings with thanksgiving and praise for their faith and love. He was a prayerful man and informed the Colossians that they were constantly in his prayers to God.
As he continued his salutation, Paul reminded the Colossians of the heavenly reward that is waiting for them and all faithful Christians. Through their obedience to the things taught to them by Epaphras, they were growing and bearing the same fruits of the Spirit that had been showered upon them. They were described as saints of the light, having been delivered from the power of darkness and transferred to the kingdom of Christ.
Those who are expecting Christ’s kingdom to be established in the future should note that the Colossians were already being added to that kingdom. It is the church of Christ and was established on the first Pentecost after His death.
Christians are still humans subject to temptations and enticing words of false teachers. Paul turned his attention to the report of Epaphras regarding errors that were being taught to the Colossians at that time. He began by explaining the eternal presence of Christ with God and that man’s redemption, the forgiveness of sins is through His blood.