Colossians 1:16 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Colossians 1:16, NIV: "For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him."

Colossians 1:16, ESV: "For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him."

Colossians 1:16, KJV: "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:"

Colossians 1:16, NASB: "For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-- all things have been created through Him and for Him."

Colossians 1:16, NLT: "for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can't see--such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him."

Colossians 1:16, CSB: "For everything was created by him, in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities--all things have been created through him and for him."

What does Colossians 1:16 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul continues His adoration of Jesus, now stating that Jesus is the creator of all things. The Greek construction here refers to "in him" or "through him." Creation, as described in the book of Genesis, took place by the power of Jesus the Son as well as the Father and Spirit (Genesis 1:1–3). This verse is Paul's effort to show the all-encompassing nature of Christ's creative power. It included absolutely everything imaginable: heaven, earth, visible, invisible. And, it included all living things, such as the angels and spiritual powers. Paul uses similar wording in Romans 8:37–39, referring to all possible aspects of creation. There, his intent is to show that nothing whatsoever can separate the believer from God's love.

Paul also adds that all things are made by Jesus, and they are also created through Jesus, and for Jesus. Since Jesus is God, all of reality is the result of His own power. Creation exists for His glory (John 17:24). Paul would use similar words in Romans 11:36, saying, "For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen."