Colossians 2:5 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Colossians 2:5, NIV: For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how disciplined you are and how firm your faith in Christ is.

Colossians 2:5, ESV: For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ.

Colossians 2:5, KJV: For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ.

Colossians 2:5, NASB: For even though I am absent in body, I am nevertheless with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your orderly manner and the stability of your faith in Christ.

Colossians 2:5, NLT: For though I am far away from you, my heart is with you. And I rejoice that you are living as you should and that your faith in Christ is strong.

Colossians 2:5, CSB: For I may be absent in body, but I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see how well ordered you are and the strength of your faith in Christ.

What does Colossians 2:5 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

As in verse 1, Paul notes he is not physically with the Colossian Christians, but is still closely connected with them. The spiritual connection is ultimately more important than any physical concerns. Paul used similar phrasing in 1 Corinthians 5:3, offering judgment to a sinning believer from a distant location. Paul elsewhere used the contrast between absence and presence to indicate his close connection with believers despite physical distance (2 Corinthians 10:11; 13:2; Philippians 1:27).

From a distance, Paul was happy to see the Colossians' strong, confident faith. These believers were focused on what was right, standing firm in their faith, a common Pauline teaching (1 Corinthians 16:13; 2 Corinthians 1:24; Galatians 5:1; Ephesians 6:13; Philippians 1:27; 4:1; 2 Thessalonians 2:15; Titus 1:9). Part of Paul's rejoicing over the state of the Colossian church is that they are growing in faith and knowledge, without needing an apostle like Paul to be there in person (Colossians 1:7).