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Colossians and Philemon (The Two Horizons New Testament Commentary | THNTC)

, 2005
ISBN: 9780802827159

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Colossians and Philemon have traditionally been overshadowed by other New Testament texts thought to express Pauline theology more clearly. In this notable commentary, however, Marianne Meye Thompson shows how these two epistles provide a unique formulation of the gospel in terms of creation and reconciliation rather than justification by faith. In Colossians she finds an overarching narrative of the Bible’s grand creation-redemption story and an important emphasis on the relationship between creation and Christology, while her exploration of Philemon casts brighter light on the significance of Paul’s familial metaphors for the church and the meaning of new humanity in Christ. Throughout her work on these two epistles, Thompson continually connects her insights to theological concerns, making this volume an excellent addition to the Two Horizons series.

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Top Highlights

“theological substance, the ‘Christ-hymn’ (1:15–20) rivals that of Philippians in its vision of the preexistent Christ” (Pages 1–2)

“But in Colossians hope takes center stage because the false teaching seems to hold out the promise of hope other than that lodged in God’s work in Christ. Hope is also resolutely oriented toward the future, not because it denigrates the present but because in the present it experiences the foretaste of what is ‘kept for you in heaven.’ The hope of the Christian is not simply to ‘go to heaven’ but to participate in the coming new world, the redeemed cosmos, which in some way already exists ‘in the heavens’ (see also the new Jerusalem in Revelation 21). In the present, and in the sphere of Christ into which believers have been transferred and in which they and their relationships with others have been made new, they have a foretaste of that redeemed cosmos itself.” (Page 21)

“Paul reminds his readers that their hope lies in what God has done for them in Christ and not in their own capacities or abilities—and certainly not in any other ceremonies, spiritual experiences, or other wouldbe powers or gods, features that are part of the ‘Colossian heresy’ which has exerted its influence on the church. Their lives have now become part of the story of the gospel, God’s gracious deliverance in Christ. Therefore, although they anticipate God’s final consummation, they do not need something further or different to complete the gospel which they had received in faith.” (Page 19)

“Third, behind Paul’s desire to reconcile Philemon and Onesimus and behind his view of the church as a family, a household, lies his conviction that the church, the body of Christ, anticipates the eschatological renewal of humankind in the image of God.” (Page 230)

  • Title: Colossians and Philemon
  • Author: Marianne Meye Thompson
  • Series: The Two Horizons New Testament Commentary
  • Publisher: Eerdmans
  • Print Publication Date: 2005
  • Logos Release Date: 2011
  • Era: era:contemporary
  • Language: English
  • Resources: 1
  • Format: Digital › Logos Research Edition
  • Subjects: Bible. N.T. Colossians › Commentaries; Bible. N.T. Philemon › Commentaries
  • ISBNs: 9780802827159, 0802827152
  • Resource ID: LLS:TWOHOR72COL
  • Resource Type: Bible Commentary
  • Metadata Last Updated: 2023-05-15T15:39:33Z

Marianne Meye Thompson is George Eldon Ladd Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, and an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA). Her previous books include the Two Horizons Commentary: Colossians and Philemon and The IVP New Testament Commentary Series: 1-3 John.


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    Digital list price: $17.99
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