Now when this epistle is read among you, see that it is read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that you likewise read the epistle from Laodicea. And say to Archippus, “Take heed to the ministry which you have received in the Lord, that you may fulfill it.” This salutation by my own hand—Paul. Remember my chains. Grace be with you. Amen. Colossians 4:16-18
This letter (epistle) to the church of Colossee (and to the church of Laodiceans and to us) ends with “Grace be with you.” It began with
“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” Col 1:1b
Grace, unmerited favor, comes to us after we’ve made peace with God, not that it was our work because we know “He himself is our Peace.” from Ephesians 2:14. Yet, we have to acknowledge the end of the war with God – that’s peace.
Take heed to the ministry.
We need God’s Grace, and His Presence to be with us to fulfill our ministry. It’s not always easy and it’s not always fun. I’ve experienced church breakups and ministry splits. I’ve seen people get divorced and leave the church. And when people leave the Lord, sometimes they leave you, too.
Remember my chains.
There are many Christians in this world and throughout history who have not had it as easy as the American church. Though we are ridiculed, sued, and downcast, we have yet to be thrown in prison, have our homes taken from us, been beaten or tortured, or killed simply because of our faith.
Grace be with you.
The one who believes they earned salvation doesn’t need grace. The rest of us know we need it.
“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16
There is no better benediction than “grace be with you.“
“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.” Philemon 1:25
“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. ” Romans 16:24
“Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.” Galatians 6:18
Questions for Further Thought:
- What is your impression of this passage?
- Do you ever think about how grace changes our ministry?
- Further Study: I encourage you to look up the following verses from which the text is based.
- Matthew 28:20
- Ephesians 2:14
- Ephesians 2:5
- Romans 16:20
- 2 Corinthians 13:14
- 1 Corinthians 16:23