Colossians 2:1-3 — The Mystery IS Christ

1 For I want you to know what a great conflict I have for you and those in Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh,

that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ,

in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

conflict (v.1) = strife, strenuous activity, agony

for (v.1 – 3x) = on behalf of

knit together (v.2) — the Greek word includes an aspect of instruction

love (v.2) — agape

knowledge (v.2) = deep, full knowledge, true knowledge

the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ (v.2) — “both of the Father” isn’t in most manuscripts. It should probably read “the mystery of God, which is Christ.”

in whom (v.3) — Christ

Paul is countering the Gnostics here. His point is that all searching for wisdom and knowledge outside of Christ is doomed to fail. (See v.4)

The two thoughts contained in this statement [v.3] are: (1) all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are in Christ, and (2) they are in Him in hidden fashion. The false teachers claimed to have a higher knowledge than that possessed by ordinary believers. Paul, against this, argues that all wisdom and knowledge are in Christ. The term “hidden” does not mean that they are concealed, but rather are laid up or stored away as a treasure. The treasure is accessible to and available for every believer. — Vaughan, page 66.


Wisdom and knowledge are the very treasures. The word knowledge is here gnosis, not epignosis: for the simple form adequately describes that which belongs to God, and is not a matter of attainment, as of that epignosis to which we seek to attain. Knowledge is the mental possession of powers of perceiving objects, wisdom is the power of right reasoning concerning them and forming right decisions accordingly. — Vine, page 349.


This deals with the glorious all sufficiency of the finished work of Christ: what it has done for us; how it reconciles us to God in one Body; and baptizes us into Christ and into each other, as it were. For “by one Spirit” has He “baptized” all believers into “one Body.” And how it gives us a position in the heavenlies in Christ, there to be blessed with all spiritual blessings. Oh, the apostle exclaims, I pray that you might know this, the great Mystery of God — Christ.  Stam, page 124.

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