This 12-week study walks readers through two Pauline letters that highlight the beauty of the gospel of Jesus Christ and how it informs Christians’ relationships with one another.
About the Author
Christopher A. Beetham (PhD, Wheaton College) is assistant professor of biblical studies at the Evangelical Theological College and assistant professor of New Testament at the Ethiopian Graduate School of Theology, both in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He is the author of Echoes of Scripture in the Letter of Paul to the Colossians.
J. I. Packer (DPhil, Oxford University) serves as the Board of Governors’ Professor of Theology at Regent College. He is the author of numerous books, including the classic best seller Knowing God. Packer served as general editor for the English Standard Version Bible and as theological editor for the ESV Study Bible.
Dane C. Ortlund (PhD, Wheaton College) is chief publishing officer and Bible publisher at Crossway. He serves as an editor for the Knowing the Bible series and the Short Studies in Biblical Theology series, and is the author of several books, including Gentle and Lowly and Edwards on the Christian Life. He is an elder at Naperville Presbyterian Church in Naperville, Illinois. Dane lives with his wife, Stacey, and their five children in Wheaton, Illinois.
Lane T. Dennis (PhD, Northwestern University) is CEO of Crossway, formerly called Good News Publishers. Before joining Good News Publishers in 1974, he served as a pastor in campus ministry at the University of Michigan (Sault Ste. Marie) and as the managing director of Verlag Grosse Freude in Switzerland. He is the author and/or editor of three books, including the Gold Medallion-award-winning book Letters of Francis A. Schaeffer, and he is the former chairman of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association. Dennis has served as the chairman of the ESV (English Standard Version) Bible Translation Oversight Committee and as the executive editor of the ESV Study Bible. Lane and his wife, Ebeth, live in Wheaton, Illinois.
Table of Contents
Series Preface J. I. Packer Lane T. Dennis 6
Week 1 Overview 7
Week 2 Paul's Greeting of and Thanksgiving for the Colossians (1:1-4) 11
Week 3 Paul's Prayer for the Colossians (1:9-14) 19
Week 4 The Christ-Hymn and Its Application to the Colossians (1:15-23) 27
Week 5 Paul's Apostolic Ministry and Its Application to the Colossians (1:24-2:5) 35
Week 6 Paul Confronts the False Teaching (2:6-23) 43
Week 7 Exhortation: Seek Instead the Things of Christ Above (3:1-17) 51
Week 8 Instructions for Relationships both inside and outside the Faith (3:18-4:6) 59
Week 9 The Letter's Conclusion: Greetings and Final Instructions (4:7-18) 67
Week 10 Paul's Greeting of and Thanksgiving for Philemon (w. 1-7) 75
Week 11 Paul's Appeal concerning Onesimus (vv. 8-25) 83
Week 12 Summary and Conclusion 91
What People are Saying About This
“This Knowing the Bible series is a tremendous resource for those wanting to study and teach the Bible with an understanding of how the gospel is woven throughout Scripture. Here are Gospel-minded pastors and scholars doing Gospel business from all the scripturesthis is a biblical and theological feast preparing God’s people to apply the entire Bible to all of life with heart and mind wholly committed to Christ’s priorities.”
Bryan Chapell,Pastor, Grace Presbyterian Church, Peoria, Illinois
“Mark Twain may have smiled when he wrote to a friend, “I didn’t have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long letter.” But the truth of Twain’s remark remains serious and universal, because well-reasoned, compact writing requires extra time and extra hard work. And this is what we have in the Crossway Bible study series Knowing the Bibleas the skilled authors and notable editors provide the contours of each book of the Bible as well as the grand theological themes that bind them together as one Book. Here, in a 12-week format, are carefully wrought studies that will ignite the mind and the heart.”
R. Kent Hughes,Senior Pastor Emeritus, College Church, Wheaton, Illinois
“Knowing the Bible brings together a gifted team of Bible teachers to produce a high quality series of study guides. The coordinated focus of these materials is unique: biblical content, provocative questions, systematic theology, practical application, and the gospel story of God’s grace presented all the way through Scripture.”
Philip Graham Ryken, President, Wheaton College
“These Knowing the Bible volumes introduce a significant and very welcome variation on the general run of inductive Bible studies. Such series often provide questions with little guidance, leaving students to their own devices. They thus tend to overlook the role of teaching in the church. By contrast, Knowing the Bible avoids the problem by providing substantial instruction with the questions. Knowing the Bible then goes even further by showing how any given passage connects with the gospel, the whole Bible, and Christian theology. I heartily endorse this orientation of individual books to the whole Bible and the gospel, and I applaud the demonstration that sound theology was not something invented later by Christians, but is right there in the pages of Scripture.”
Graeme Goldsworthy,Former Lecturer in Old Testament, Biblical Theology, and Hermeneutics, Moore Theological College
“What a gift to earnest, Bible-loving, Bible-searching believers! The organization and structure of the Bible study format presented through the Knowing the Bible series is so well conceived. Students of the Word are led to understand the content of passages through perceptive, guided questions, and they are given rich insights and application all along the way in the brief but illuminating sections that conclude each study. What potential growth in depth and breadth of understanding these studies offer. One can only pray that vast numbers of believers will discover more of God and the beauty of his Word through these rich studies.”
Bruce A. Ware,T. Rupert and Lucille Coleman Professor of Christian Theology, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary