“And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words.”

One germ can infect the entire body, and one drop of poison can pollute a cup of pure water; and we have a saying that one rotten apple can spoil the entire barrel.   In this verse Paul is recognizing the threat of even one false teacher–“any man.”  Paul was more concerned with the methods of deceit thatn with the identity of the deceiver.

“And this I say,”
Literally:  “And I say this”–Respecting the character and sufficiency of the truth revealed in Christ.  Paul explains why he has made this great claim for Christ at this point in his discussion.

        AND:  (Grk.–de)—Would better have been rendered as “now.”  Compare with “lest any man,” etc., vv. 8, 16, 18. He refers to the blending of Judaism with Oriental philosophy, and the combination of this mixture with Christianity.


False Teachers Beguile

“lest any man should beguile”
Literally:  “that no one may beguile you”–That is, deceive you; lead you away from the truth. 

        BEGUILE:  (Grk.–paralogizetai)—Used in the N.T. only here and James 1:22) (comp. with “delude”).  The word is found in the LXX (Septuagint)—(Josh. 9:22; I Sam. 19:17; II Sam. 21:5).  Th

       The Greek word paralogizetai means “to deceive by sophistry” or “subtle reasoning,” in which all the conclusions appear to be fairly drawn from the premises, but the premises are either assumed without evidence, or false in themselves. But this not being easily discovered.  Paul seems to be alluding to the Greek philosophers who were notorious for this kind of argumentation.  Plato and Socrates were not free from this tactic if “reasoning” and debate.
         Paralogizeta is a legal term from Greek courts.  The word was used for the seductive power of a lawyer’s arguments, which could enable the criminal to escape from a just punishment.  A church, and the believers in it, should have such a grip on the truth that it remains unmoved by these kinds of arguments.

False Teachers Entice

“with enticing words.”
Literally:  “with persuasive words”–With artful words, smooth and plausible arguments, such as were employed by the Greek sophists and rhetoricians.  Plausible as wearing the guise of wisdom and humility (vv. 18, 23).  In classical Greek the word is used to speak of probable argument as opposed to demonstration. 

With persuasiveness of speech (Grk.–en pithanologiâi). The art of persuasion is the height of oratory, which these Greeks dearly loved, but it easily degenerates into trickery and momentary and flashy deceit such as Paul disclaimed in I Cor.2:4–“And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.”  . It is curious how winning champions of error, like the Gnostics and modern faddists and indoctrinators can be with plausibility that catches the gullible.

Believers must always be alert.  While watching out for the enemy, they should also be building up their defenses.  An illustration of this may be seen when the returning Jews were building the walls of Jerusalem.  The construction workers built with their weapons beside them (Neh. 4:18).

“For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ.”

“For though I be absent in the flesh,”
Literally:  “For though I am indeed absent in the flesh”—Paul anticipates an objection which might be made, how he could have such a conflict and concern for them, and express so much affection for them, and know so much of their affairs, in what condition and situation they were, and how liable to be deceived by false teachers, when he was absent from them, and had never been among them.

Though he had never bodily been present with them, this did not hinder him from, in another sense, being present with them in spirit, and so have knowledge of them and their condition, and to be disturbed about them and concerned for them.  It is hardly possible that such words as these in this verse could have been used to perfect strangers; since they argue a considerable knowledge of them, and a knowledge founded on personal acquaintance. 

        FOR:  (Grk.–gar)-Beginning of Paul’s argument against their allowing themselves to be beguiled; an argument drawn from a regard to his personal authority as though he were present.

“yet am I with you in the spirit”
Literally:  “yet I am with you in spirit”– That is, I seem to see you; I feel as if I were there, and were looking upon you; and I have the same attentiveness as if I were there with you and saw all the danger which exists that your beautiful order and harmony should be disturbed by the influence of false philosophy..

1.       Unity can be real or false.  Friends and relatives are shocked when a “strong” marriage ends in divorce.
2.       Unity has both an outward and inward character.  It includes how people see us and how we really are.

“joying and beholding your order,”
Literally:  “rejoicing and seeing your order”–That is, I rejoice as if I saw your order. He had such confidence that everything would be done among them as became Christians, that he could rejoice as if he actually saw it.



ORDER:   (Grk,–taxin)—The military line (from tassô), “unbroken, intact” or “orderly array.”  This word signifies a military order, such as is observed in armies, as in battle array.  In the Roman military world, orderly soldiers were those who had no breaks or breaches in their ranks. 

Shield Wall-4


         This is suggesting that these Christians were good soldiers of Christ, who were enlisted under His banners, and kept in due order, in rank and file; stood fast in one spirit, contended and strove together for the faith of the Gospel, fought the good fight of faith, nor could any hardship move them from their station;; and so may denote their attachment to the Gospel, and to one another; they were united to, and abode by each other; they served the Lord with one consent, and kept the unity of the Spirit, in the bond of peace (Eph. 4:3), which is a pleasant thing to behold, as well as what follows.
         A local church should be organized like a military unit; with every member in his, or her, appointed place, ready and willing to obey the word from its Commander-in-Chief (Christ). 

        YOUR ORDER:  (Grk.–tên taxin)–A few stragglers had gone over to the Gnostics, but there had been no panic, no breach in the line

“and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ.”
Literally:  “and the firmness of {your} faith in Christ”— Either in the grace of faith, and the exercise of it on Christ, in opposition to doubtings and unbelief.

Whereby God is honored, and with which he is well pleased; souls are filled with peace and joy; Satan is resisted and overcome; and the hearts of others, particularly ministers of the Gospel, are comforted: or in the doctrine of faith respecting Christ, in which they stood fast; notwithstanding there was a majority against it, the wise and learned, the rich and mighty, did not receive it; and though it was opposed by false teachers, persecuted by profane men, and loaded with reproach and obloquy; and also in the profession of it, which they held without wavering: now to see a set of Christians, a church of Christ walking together in Gospel order, steady in their faith on Christ, abiding by the doctrine of faith, and maintaining an honorable profession, how beautiful and delightful is it!

        STEADFASTNESS:  (Grk.–stereōma)—Only here in the N.T. The kindred adjective stereo>v (stereos) “solid, occurs in II Tim. 2:19 Heb. 5:12 I Pet. 5:9; and the  Greek verb (steroō), “to make solid,” in Acts 3:7; 16:6.  Paul continues using a military metaphor.


         Stereōma refers  to a solid defense; an immovable military formation.  It was used to describe a Roman army unbreakable square that was solidly immovable against the impact of an enemies attack.  Within a local church there should be disciplined order and strong steadiness. As “order” expresses the outward aspect of the Church; so “steadfastness” expresses the inner basis on which their Church rested..
         FAITH is represented as a host solidly drawn up; your solid front, close phalanx.   The Greek literally implies not an abstract quality, but the thing in the concrete; thus their  “faith” here is the solid thing which constituted the basis of their Church.  In the LXX (Septuagint), the term has the sense of a stronghold: “They stood not in the stronghold.”  “The Lord is my strength; stronghold, bulwark,” (Psa. 17:2).  In Gen. 1:6; Ezek.1:22— stereōma is rendered as “firmament.”

VERSES 6-7:  WALK     

“Therefore, as you received  Christ Jesus the Lord
{so} walk ye in Him”

The participle “so” is supplied by our translators, and actually weakens the sense. No stress should be laid on it, as is often done. The meaning is, simply, “Since you have received Christ as your Lord as He was preached to you, hold fast the doctrine which you have received, and do not permit yourselves to be turned aside by any Jewish teachers, or teachers of philosophy.”


“Therefore, as you received  Christ Jesus the Lord”
Literally:  “Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord”–Once-for-all; (past perfect tense, denoting a past action
(never to be repeated) from Epaphras. Jesus the Christ as your Lord (compare I Cor. 12:3; II Cor. 4:5; Phil. 3:8).  He does not merely say, “Ye received” the doctrine of Christ, but you received “Jesus” Himself; this is the essence of faith (John 14:21, 23; Gal. 1:16).

        RECEIVED: (Grk.–perelabete)—This verb refers to the time when Epaphras evangelized and taught them.

Receiving Christ is believing in Him.   Faith is the eye of the soul, that sees the beauty, glory, fullness, and suitableness of Christ; the foot that goes to Him, and the hand that takes hold on Him, and the arm that receives and embraces Him; so that this is not merely receiving Him into the head by notion, but into the heart by faith; and not only in part but in whole.  Faith receives a whole Christ.
1.       His Person as both God and man.  
2.       Him in all His offices, as prophet, priest, and King;
Particularly as a Savior and Redeemer, He being under that character so exceeding suitable to the case of a sensible sinner; and it receives all blessings of grace along with Him, from Him, and through Him;
3.       As a justifying righteousness, remission of sins, adoption of children, grace for grace, and an inheritance among all them that are sanctified; and both Christ and them, as the free grace gifts of God.

Paul is telling these Colossian believers:  you have received Him by faith as your Savior, or as you were instructed respecting His rank, character, and work. The object here is to induce them not to swerve from the views which they had of Christ when He was made known to them. They had at first probably received their ideas of the Savior from Paul himself, (see the Intro.;) and, at any rate, Paul’s purpose is to assure them that the views which they had when they “received him” were founded in truth.

{so}walk ye in Him”
Literally:  “walk in Him”—You have once-for-all received the Spirit of life in Christ  (past action never to be repeated); so carry into practice that life in your walk (Gal. 5:25).  Believers must walk in Christ.  Their whole lives must be lived in a consciousness of His presence.

         This is the main scope of the Epistle. Continue in the belief and practice of those truths which you received when you gave your hearts to Christ. The word “walk,” in the Scriptures, is used to denote the manner of life; and the sense here is, that they should live and act wholly under the influence of the conceptions which they had of the Savior when they first embraced Him.

         Not only in imitation of Him as He walked, in the exercise of grace, as love, patience, humility, and meekness, and in the discharge of duty; but by faith in Him, going on in a way of:
1.       Believing in Him, always,

2.       Looking to Him,
3.       Leaning on Him, and,
4.       Deriving grace and strength from Him.

To walk in Christ, is to walk…
1.       In and after the Spirit of Christ,
2.       Under His influence,
3.       By His direction, and,
4.       Through His assistance.
5.       To walk in the doctrine of Christ,
          a.       Abiding by it, and increasing
          b.       In the knowledge of it; and,
6.       To walk in the ordinances of Christ,
          Which with His presence and Spirit, are ways of pleasantness and paths of peace: particularly here it may signify,
7.       To make use of Christ, and
8.       Walk on in Him,
          a.       As the way, truth, and the life;
          b.       As the only way of access to God, and acceptance with Him;
          c.       As the way of salvation,
          d.       As the only true way to eternal life and happiness,In opposition to every creature, angels, or men; the worshipping of the One,
                   or works done by the other.

9.       Continue in those views of Christ;
10.     Live in the maintenance of them;
11.     Let them regulate your whole conduct.


“Rooted and built up in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.”

“Rooted and built up in Him,”
Literally:  “Being rooted and built up in Him”— A local church, and the believers in it, must be rooted and built up in Christ.  By these metaphors, Paul expresses the safe and happy state of these believers; and which he makes use of as arguments, to engage them to walk on in Christ, and as pointing out the manner in which they should live and work. 

       ROOTED:  (Grk.–errizômenoi)—Firmly established–as a tree is whose roots run deep, and extend afar

The meaning is, that His love should be as firm in our hearts as a tree is in the soil. Just as a tree is deeply rooted in the soil and draws its nourishment from it, so Christians are rooted in Christ, the very source of their lives and strength.  Just as a house stands fast because it is built on a strong foundation, so the believer’s life is resistant to any spiritual storm because it is founded on the strength of Christ Himself.  Christ is both the source of the Christian life and the foundation for its stability.  It is not usual with Paul to employ this double metaphor, taken partly from the growth of a tree and the increase of a building.  They are to be rooted; as the good seed had been already sown, it is to take root, and the roots are to spread far, wide, and deep.  They are to be grounded; as the foundation has already been laid, they are to build thereon.  In the one case, they are to bear much fruit; in the other, they are to grow up to be a habitation of God through the Spirit..

        BUILT UP:   (Grk.–epoikodomoumenoi)—Literally:  “being builded up”—present tense; continuous action.  At their time of conversion all believers were “built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the Chief cornerstone” (Eph. 2:20).

        As “rooted” implies their vitality; so “builded up,” implies massive solidity. As in the Song of Solomon, when one image is not sufficient to express the varied aspects of divine truth, another is employed to supply the idea required. Thus “walking,” a third image (v. 6), expresses the thought which “rooted” and “built,” though each suggesting a thought peculiar to itself, could not express, namely, onward motion. “Rooted” is in the past tense, implying their first conversion and vital grafting “in Him.” “Built up” is present in the Greek, implying their progressive increase in the faith by union with Him. Eph. 2:20 refers to the Church; but the passage here to their individual progress in edification (Acts 20:32).    

“and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught”
Literally:  “and being confirmed in the faith, even as you were  taught”—“To wit, by the founders of the church, and by those faithful ministers who had succeeded them.

        STABLISHED IN THE FAITH:  (Grk.–bebaioumenoi tei pistei)— Literally: “being confirmed in the faith”—i.e., that of Christ, or in the doctrine of faith which respects Christ:

“abounding there in with thanksgiving”
Literally:  “abounding in it with thanksgiving”—Advancing to fuller
maturity (compare v. 2) in the faith, “with thanksgiving” to God as the gracious Author of this entire blessing.

That is, in the faith; as in the grace, so in the doctrine of faith.   As saints are to abound in the work of the Lord, and in every good work, and in the exercise of every grace, so in the knowledge of truth; and to make use of all means for the increase of, and growth in Gospel grace and light, and the knowledge of a crucified Christ, which is meant by abounding: for all which there is great reason for thanksgiving; both for the unspeakable gift of Christ, who is received as such by faith, and in whom believers are rooted and built up; and for faith itself, which is the gift of God; and also for the Gospel, and the truths of it; and for every degree of spiritual light in it, and knowledge of it.