Colossians 4:10-13

10. Aristarchus my fellow-pri-soner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister's son to Barnabas; (touching whom ye received commandments: if he come unto you, receive him;)

10. Salutat vos Aristarchus, con-captivus meus, et Marcus, cognatus Barnabae, de quo accepistis mandata si venerit ad vos, ut suscipiatis ipsum.

11. And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellow-workers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me.

11. Et Iesus qui dicitur Iustus, qui sunt ex circumcisione, hi soli co-operarii in regnum Dei, qui mihi fuerunt solatio.

12. Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.

12. Salutat vos Epaphras, qui est ex vobis servus Christi, semper decertans pro vobis in precationibus, ut stetis perfecti et completi in omni voluntate Dei.

13. For I bear him record, that he hath a great zeal for you, and them that are in Laodicea, and them in Hierapolis.

13. Testimonium enim illi reddo, quod multum studium vestri habeat, et eorum qui sunt Laodiceae et Hierapoli.


10. Fellow-prisoner. From this it appears that there were others that were associated with Paul, 1 after he was brought to Rome. It is also probable that his enemies exerted themselves, in the outset, to deter all pious persons from giving him help, by threatening them with the like danger, and that this for a time had the desired effect; but that afterwards some, gathering up courage, despised everything that was held out to them in the way of terror.

That ye receive him. Some manuscripts have receive in the imperative mood; but it is a mistake, for he expresses the nature of the charge which the Colossians had received -- that it was a commendation of either Barnabas, or of Marcus. The latter is the more probable. In the Greek it is the infinitive mood, 2 but it may be rendered in the way I have done. Let us, however, observe, that they were careful in furnishing attestations, that they might distinguish good men from false brethren -- from pretenders, from impostors, and multitudes of vagrants. The same care is more than simply necessary at the present day, both because good teachers are coldly received, and because credulous and foolish men lay themselves too open to be deceived by impostors.

11. These only are fellow-workers, -- that is, of the circumcision; for he afterwards names others, but they were of the uncircumcision. He means, therefore, that there were few Jews at Rome who shewed themselves to be helpers to the gospel, nay more, that the whole nation was opposed to Christ. At the same time, by workers he means those only who were endowed with gifts that were necessary for promoting the gospel. But where was Peter at that time? Unquestionably, he has either been shamefully passed over here, and not without injustice, or else those speak falsely who maintain that he was then at Rome. Farther, he calls the gospel the kingdom of God, for it is the scepter by which God reigns over us, and by means of it we are singled out to life eternal. 3 But of this form of expression we shall treat more fully elsewhere.

12. Always striving. Here we have an example of a good pastor, whom distance of place cannot induce to forget the Church, so as to prevent him from taking the care of it with him beyond the sea. We must notice, also, the strength of entreaty that is expressed in the word striving. For although the Apostle had it in view here to express intensity of affection, he at the same time admonishes the Colossians not to look upon the prayers of their pastor as useless, but, on the contrary, to reckon that they would afford them no small assistance. Lastly, let us infer from Paul's words, that the perfection of Christians is, when they stand complete in the will of God, that they may not suspend their scheme of life upon anything else.

1 "D'autres furent mis prisonniers auec sainct Paul;" -- "Some others were made prisoners along with St. Paul."

2 Excipite de>xasqe, vel de>xasqai, ut excipiatis, si conjungas cum ejla>bete, ut habet Syrus interpres, ut exprimatur quod fuerit illud mandatum;" -- "Receive ye, de>xasqe, or de>xasqai, that ye may receive, if you connect it with ejla>bete, (ye received,) as the Syrian interpreter has it, so as to express what the charge was." -- Beza. -- Ed.

3 "Nous sommes receus a la vie eternelle;" -- "We are received to life eternal."