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Thank you for coming to Bible Study. Let us pray. ''Father thank you for your presence at our Bible Study. Give us insight as we study your word in Jesus name. Today we are studying Paul's prayer to the Colossians.
Most Christians are quick to acknowledge the importance of prayer. More specifically, most agree that we should faithfully pray for one another and for the church as a whole. But while we know that we should pray, the question is, do we? How often do we pray for one another and the church?
An important follow up question is this: When we do pray for one another, what is the primary focus of our prayers? What are the things that we focus on most in our prayers for one another?
As we come to Colossians 1 we have the opportunity to listen in as Paul describes the way he prays for the Colossians and what He is asking God to do in and through them. As we read the contents of Paul's prayers it should encourage us to consider the kinds of prayers we pray and evaluate the content of our own prayers for the church and for one another.
Paul's Commitment to Prayer (1:9a)
- Before considering the content of Paul's prayer it's important recognize his commitment to prayer. Although Paul has never met the church at Colossae he tells them that he has prayed for them without ceasing. His prayers for them are faithful and ongoing.
- Application: If Paul is this committed to praying for a church whom he has never met (and may never meet) how much more should we be committed to praying for those around us – for those in the church who we see week in and week out?
Paul's Prayer for the Colossians: A Prayer for Knowledge (1:9b)
- The first part of Paul's prayer for the Colossians is a prayer for knowledge. He wants them to be filled or completely full of the knowledge of God's will.
- God's Will –When Paul speaks of the will of God in this context he's referring to the general desires and expectations that God has for all people as revealed in His Word. He wants the Colossians to understand what God has called them to and what God expects of them, and this is the same thing He desires and expects for every believer: That we would know Him, seek to obey Him in every way and grow in maturity (sanctification) (1 Thessalonians 4:3a).
- Spiritual Wisdom and Understanding – Paul doesn't simply pray that the Colossians would know the will of God, he also wants them to be able to apply the will of God to their lives – this is the function of wisdom and understanding.
Paul's Prayer for the Colossians: A Prayer for Worthy Living (1:10-14)
- While Paul's first request is for knowledge, he doesn't desire knowledge for the sake of knowledge. He wants the Colossians to know and understand the will of God so they can apply it and thereby walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him.
The Characteristics of a Worthy Walk
- Bearing Fruit in Every Good Work (vs. 10b) – The New Testament often uses the imagery of bearing fruit as a sign of health and growth. Those who are 'walking worthy' are those whose lives are marked by the fruit of good works (John 15:5, 8-9; Galatians 5:22-24).
- Growing in the Knowledge of God (vs. 10c) - The only way we are ever going to be people who are fully pleasing to God is to give ourselves completely to knowing Him. There is nothing that demands a higher priority than this (Jeremiah 9:23-24). The primary way we grow in the knowledge of God is through the study of His Word.
- Strengthened by God for Endurance (vs. 11) – A life that is pleasing to God cannot be lived in one's own strength; the strength must be supplied by God. It is only through His power that endurance is possible.
- Thankful to God His Work of Salvation (vv. 12-14) – The most basic characteristic of living a 'worthy life' is that the person is a part of God's family. Along those lines, the person who walks worthy will be a person of gratitude for God's work of salvation. Paul describes three significant aspects of our salvation: Our inheritance, our transference and our redemption.
Application: Paul's example of prayer should cause us evaluate both our commitment to praying as well as the content of our prayers. As we pray we should desire that those around us and the church as a whole would grow in the knowledge of God's will and in the ability to apply that knowledge to living a life worthy of the Lord.
1. Most Christians are quick to acknowledge the importance of prayer. True or False
2. We should pray faithfully for one another. True or False
3. We should pray faithfully for the church. True or False
4. Paul was committed to prayer. True or False
5. Paul was not committed to prayer. True or False
6. Paul had not met the Church at Colossae. True or False
7. Paul had met the Church at Colossae. True or False
8. Paul prayed for the Church at Colossae without ceasing. True or False
9. Paul ceased praying for the Church at Colossae. True or False
10. Paul's prayers for the Church at Colossae was faithful. True or False
11. Paul's prayer for the Church at Colossae was not faithful. True or False
12. Paul's prayer for the Church at Colossae was ongoing. True por False
13. Paul's prayer for the Church at Colossae was not ongoing. True or False
14. We must be committed to praying for one another. True or False
15. We must not be committed to praying for one another. True or False
16. The first part of Paul's prayer was a prayer for knowledge. True or False
17. The first part of Paul's prayer was not a prayer for Knowledge. True or False
18. Paul's prayer was for the Colossae Church to be filled with the knowledge of God's will. True or False
19. I Thessalonian 4:3a is indicated above. True or False
20. 1 Thessalonians 4:3a is not indicated above. True or False
21. Paul's prayer involved the function of wisdom. True or False
22. Paul's prayer did not involv e the function of wisdom. True or False
23. Paul's prayer involved the function of understanding. True or False
24. The New Testament often uses the imagery of bearing fruit as a sign of health. True or False
25. The New Testament often uses the imagery of bearing fruit as a sign of growth. True or False
26. John 15:5 is not indicated above. True or False
27. Galatians 5:22-24 is not indicated above. True or False
28. Jeremiah 9:23-24 is not indicated above. True or False
29. The primary way we grow in the knowledge of God is through the study of His Word. True or False
30. A life that is pleasing to God cannot be lived in one's own strength. True or False
31. Our strength is supplied by God. True or False
32. Our strength is not supplied by God. True or False
33. It is only through His power that endurance is possible. True or False
34. It is not only through His power that endurance is possible. True or False
35. It is never through His power that endurance is possible. True or False
36. The above is about the story of Esau. True or False
37. The above is about the story of Jacob. True or False
38. The above is about the story of Abraham. True or False
39. John 15:5 is indicated above. True or False
40. Galatians 5:22-24 is indicated above. True or False
1. True 2. True 3. True 4. True 5. False 6. True 7. False 8. True 9. False 10. True 11. False 12. True 13. False 14. True 15. False 16. True 17. False 18. True 19. True 20. False 21.True 22. False 23. True 24. True 25. True 26. False 27. False 28. False 29. True 30. True 31. True 32. False 33. True 34. False 35. False 36. False 37. False 38. False 39. True 40. True