3 thoughts on “Colossians”

  1. With regard to the suggested chiasm from Colossians 1:13-1:23 here are a couple of comments. First, note that “heaven” and “earth” are reversed in verse 20 so these two words are part of what makes the structure a chiasm. Secondly, the words “principalities” and “beginning” translate the same Greek word so this is part of the chiasm too. This seems to point to verse 17 being the central part on the basis that it is separated from the statements before and after by “and”, as shown below:

    A (13-15) Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every CREATURE:

    B (16) For by him were all things created, that are in HEAVEN,

    C (16) and that are in EARTH, visible and invisible,

    D (16) whether they be thrones, or dominions, or PRINCIPALITIES , or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

    E (17) AND HE IS BEFORE ALL THINGS, AND BY HIM ALL THINGS CONSIST.

    D′ (18, 19) And he is the head of the body, the church: who is THE BEGINNING , the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;

    C′ (20) And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in EARTH,

    B′ (20) or things in HEAVEN.

    A′ (21-23) And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every CREATURE which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;

  2. thanks for the helpful comment Nigel. Your proposal still doesn’t capture “firstborn” or “blood” which would seem to be key concepts. Is it possible that there are two chiasms superimposed?

  3. Yes, another chiasm is:

    A (13-14) Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his BLOOD, even the forgiveness of sins:

    B (15) Who is the image of the invisible God, the FIRSTBORN of every creature:

    C (16) For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or PRINCIPALITIES , or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

    D (17) AND HE IS BEFORE ALL THINGS, AND BY HIM ALL THINGS CONSIST.

    C′ (18, 19) And he is the head of the body, the ecclesia: who is THE BEGINNING ,

    B′ (18, 19) the FIRSTBORN from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;

    A′ (20) And, having made peace through the BLOOD of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.

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