3 In our prayers for you we always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 4 for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, 5 because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. You have heard of this hope before in the word of the truth, the gospel 6 that has come to you. Just as it is bearing fruit and growing in the whole world, so it has been bearing fruit among yourselves from the day you heard it and truly comprehended the grace of God. 7 This you learned from Epaphras, our beloved fellow servant. [NRSV]
What do we learn about ‘the gospel’ from this passage?
• The Colossian’s ‘faith in Christ Jesus’ and ‘love for all the saints’ spring from the ‘hope laid up in heaven’.
• This ‘hope’ was a part of ‘the goodnews’ (gospel) brought to them by Epaphras, a colleague of Paul and Timothy.
• This goodnews is ‘bearing fruit among them’ and ‘in the whole world’, it is impacting human life in keeping with what it communicates.
• It has been having this impact among them since they ‘heard it and truly comprehended the grace of God’.