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Colossians 1:29

ESV For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me.
NIV To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.
NASB For this purpose I also labor, striving according to His power which works mightily within me.
CSB I labor for this, striving with his strength that works powerfully in me.
NLT That’s why I work and struggle so hard, depending on Christ’s mighty power that works within me.
KJV Whereunto I also labor, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.
NKJV To this end I also labor, striving according to His working which works in me mightily.

What does Colossians 1:29 mean?

Paul ends this section describing his work as a minister, describing the hard work he was putting into serving Christ. He viewed his ministry as work, calling it "toil." Just as a farmer must constantly work his land and care for his livestock, Paul viewed his service to the church as an ongoing ministry that involved much effort. The term agōnizomenos is translated as "struggling, striving, or fighting." Paul is willing not only to work, but to work hard and at great cost on behalf of his fellow Christians.

Paul both "toiled" and struggled to care for the many believers he served. It was not a part-time effort, but rather something that required "all his energy." Paul often worked to the point of exhaustion on behalf of those he served. Yet he did not serve in his own human strength. God provided the power. God expects us to be fully devoted to Him and in service to others (Matthew 22:37–40), yet our power is from Him, not our own works (Ephesians 2:8–9).
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