Colossians 1:5-10

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These small group studies of Colossians contain outlines, cross-references, Bible study discussion questions, and applications.  Visit our library of inductive Bible studies for more in depth inductive studies on this and other books of the Bible you can use in your small group.

Colossians 1:5-10 Inductive Bible Study

Title: Abundant, Overflowing Prayer

Summary– Our hope is in heaven, and we have learned of it and continue to grow and bear fruit through the truth of the gospel and the grace of God. Epaphras, a faithful servant of the Lord, has been a witness to their love of the Spirit. Therefore, Paul prays an unceasing, thankful, abundant prayer for them.

Central Teaching– In Christ, we can have abundant, overflowing, bountiful spiritual life.

Key Words– Christ, truth, pray, ALL, thanks, fruit, increasing, servant

Key Verse– 1:9

Ten Things this Passage Says

1. We have a hope laid up for us in heaven.

2. We heard of our heavenly hope through the word of truth, the gospel.

3. True Christians are constantly bearing fruit and increasing.

4. Epaphras bore good news to Paul of the love the Colossians had in the Spirit.

5. We should constantly pray for each other.

6. We can be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding.

7. We can walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, pleasing Him in every respect.

8. We can bear fruit in every good work and increase in the knowledge of God.

9 We can be strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attainment of all steadfastness and patience.

10. We can give thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.

Ten Things this Passage does NOT Say

1. Our hope is in something or someone here on earth.

2. It’s okay for Christians to be stagnate in their lives and growth.

3. We are not our brothers’ keeper, and have no responsibility to pray for them.

4. We cannot be sure of what the will of God is.

5. We cannot walk in a manner worthy of the Lord.

6. We cannot please Him.

7. Once we’ve been Christians long enough, we reach a point where we can’t learn any more about God.

8. We are weak and unable to do what He has for us in this life.

9. We cannot be steadfast or patient.

10. There are some situations in which we just cannot be thankful.

What does this passage teach me about God?

He has a hope laid up for me in heaven.

His word is truth.

He sends His gospel to us, as well as to the entire world.

He is gracious.

His Spirit teaches us to love.

He wants us to fully know His will.

He is the giver of all spiritual wisdom and understanding.

He enables us to walk worthy of Him and please Him in all respects.

He strengthens us with all power, according to His glorious might.

He is steadfast and patient.

He has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.

How does this passage apply to my life?

Pray powerfully. Do not be satisfied with temporal, shallow prayer requests.

Know that I CAN know the will of God fully, and prayerfully seek it out. Then once I know it, be willing and joyful to follow it.

Evaluate my life. In what manners am I walking worthy of the Lord? If an area is not worthy, how can I change it?

Do I joyously give thanks to the Father? Do I give thanks at all? Give thanks more purposefully.

Discussion Questions-

Why did the Colossians exercise this faith and love? (V5)

How did they hear of this hope? (V5)

What is the word of truth? (V5)

What should this indicate about our own gospel preaching? (V5) Gospel means “good news,” and  it was classically used in the Greek to express the good news of victory in battle. The gospel is the good news of Christ’s victory over Satan, sin and death.

“Which has come to you, just as in all the world,” shows us several interesting things about the gospel. What are they? (V6)

What should the gospel be doing in us since the day we heard it? (V6)

According to V6, what defines the moment of salvation? We understand the grace of God in truth.

From whom had the Colossians originally heard the gospel? (V7)

Even though Epaphras was the one who had “led them to the Lord,” what was his status with the Colossians? With Christ? (V7)

What did Epaphras inform Paul and Timothy about the Colossians? (V8)

How did the Colossians love? (V8)

How might love “in the Spirit” differ from fleshly love? (V8)

“For this reason…” is referring to what? (V9)

What does it mean to be filled with the knowledge of His will? (V9) Col. 3:16, Eph 5:17, 1 Th 4:3, 5:18, 1 Ti 2:4, 1 Pe 2:13, 15, 4:19

What does it mean to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord? How do we know if our walk is worthy of the Lord? (V10)

What does it mean “to please Him in all respects?” How can we be doing the “right” thing, but not be pleasing Him in all respects? (V10)

What does it mean to “bear fruit in every good work”? (V10) The Bible identifies spiritual fruit as leading people to Christ (1 Co 16:15), praising God (Heb 13:15), giving money (Rom 15:26-28), living a godly life (Heb 12:11), and displaying holy attitudes (Gal 5:22-23).

How can we increase in the knowledge of God? (V10) Spiritual growth cannot occur without biblical knowledge (1 Pet 2:2, 2 Pet 3:18). Evidences of spiritual growth include a deeper love for God’s Word (Ps 119:97), a more perfect obedience (1 Jn 2:3-5), a strong doctrinal foundation (1 Jn 2:12-14), an expanding faith (2 Th 1:3) and a greater love for others (Php 1:9)

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