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Colossians 3:11

ESV Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
NIV Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
NASB a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, and free, but Christ is all, and in all.
CSB In Christ there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free; but Christ is all and in all.
NLT In this new life, it doesn’t matter if you are a Jew or a Gentile, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbaric, uncivilized, slave, or free. Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us.
KJV Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.

What does Colossians 3:11 mean?

This section has mostly been negative, with Paul condemning the earthly desires Christians are to avoid. (Colossians 3:5–9). Here, he ends on a more positive note by emphasizing the unity of all believers in Christ. The city of Colossae probably included all of the people groups Paul mentions in this verse. There would have been both Greeks and Jews, with Greeks generally being "uncircumcised" and Jews "circumcised."

Colossae probably housed many "barbarian" people, which most Greeks defined as those who could not speak the Greek language. As a result, they were considered uneducated and had a reputation for being rough and sometimes brutal. Scythians were those who lived along the Black Sea and Caspian Sea. In the first century, Scythians were considered the worst of barbarians by the Greeks.

Slaves, literally "bondservants" from the Greek doulos, were common in Paul's time. He will soon give spiritual instructions for Christian slaves at the end of this particular chapter. In contrast, "free" people were those not obligated to others; these were considered more affluent in society, though they were not always wealthy.

All of these groups are considered equal in Christ's sight. Christ is sufficient for all things, including the ability to create unity among the diverse people who have been made new in Him.
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