Useful Bible Studies > Colossians Commentary > chapter 2

Our prayers for people across the world are powerful and effective

Colossians 2:5

It is interesting to compare Paul’s words here with his words to the church in Corinth, in 1 Corinthians 5:3-4. In both passages, Paul was unable to be physically present with the Christians in their church. So instead, he joined with them in prayer.

Our bodies can only be in one place at one time. However, our spirits do not belong to this physical world. We can pray with our mind, but we can also pray with our spirit (1 Corinthians 14:14-15). We do that when we allow God’s Holy Spirit to direct our prayers. The Holy Spirit can show us things that our natural mind is unable to know or understand (1 Corinthians 2:9-16). Therefore, by the power of the Holy Spirit we can pray for people across the world, and our prayers are powerful (James 5:16). In his mind, Paul knew about the church in Colosse from Epaphras (4:11-12). However, Epaphras left Colosse to travel to Rome several months previously. Therefore, Paul could not know with his natural mind what the current situation was in Colosse. So, he and Ephaphras joined together to pray much for the Christians there (1:7-9)

During those prayers, God gave Paul the confidence that he was answering the prayers. Paul says that this happened in two different ways. One was that, during prayer God gave Paul a great sense of joy about the state of Colosse’s Christians. The other was that Paul seemed to ‘see’ something, not with his natural eyes but in his spirit. He ‘saw’ a church of people who were behaving well. They were firmly trusting in Christ. So Paul knew that these Christians were developing well in their relationship with God. That fact encouraged Paul and Epaphras to pray even more for them.

Next part: What it means to receive Christ into our lives (Colossians 2:6)


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© 2019, Keith Simons.