What does Colossians 4:10 mean?
ESV: Aristarchus my fellow prisoner greets you, and Mark the cousin of Barnabas (concerning whom you have received instructions—if he comes to you, welcome him),
NIV: My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.)
NASB: Aristarchus, my fellow prisoner, sends you his greetings; and also Barnabas’ cousin Mark (about whom you received instructions; if he comes to you, welcome him);
CSB: Aristarchus, my fellow prisoner, sends you greetings, as does Mark, Barnabas's cousin (concerning whom you have received instructions: if he comes to you, welcome him),
NLT: Aristarchus, who is in prison with me, sends you his greetings, and so does Mark, Barnabas’s cousin. As you were instructed before, make Mark welcome if he comes your way.
KJV: Aristarchus my fellowprisoner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister's son to Barnabas, (touching whom ye received commandments: if he come unto you, receive him;)
NKJV: Aristarchus my fellow prisoner greets you, with Mark the cousin of Barnabas (about whom you received instructions: if he comes to you, welcome him),
Verse Commentary:
Beginning in this verse, Paul mentions several believers who are with him in Rome. Verses 10 through 14 list six specific men, similar to a list given in Philemon 1:24. The first two men noted in this verse are Aristarchus and Mark.

Aristarchus is likely the same man mentioned by name in Acts 19:29, 20:4, and 27:2. He had accompanied Paul in the past and traveled with him to Rome. Paul describes him as a "fellow prisoner," though he was unlikely part of Paul's current confinement. He had, however, been a literal prisoner at other times.

Mark is named here as "the cousin of Barnabas." Most scholars agree that this is the same Mark mentioned throughout the New Testament (Acts 12:12; 2 Timothy 4:11; 1 Peter 5:13). This is the same Mark who traveled with Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey, leaving early to return to Jerusalem. Paul refused to take him on the next trip, with Barnabas leaving with Mark instead to Cyprus. Years later, Mark is mentioned with Paul during his house arrest alongside Luke (Colossians 4:14).

As a close associate of Peter, this Mark is the same one credited with writing the Gospel of Mark. Mark and Luke may well have developed their written accounts during the time Paul was writing this letter, which would explain their many similarities.
Verse Context:
Colossians 4:7–18 ends Paul's letter to the believers at Colossae in his typical fashion. Most of Paul's letters begin with an introduction, transition from ideas into applications, and then end with general news and greetings. Here, Paul specifically mentions the town of Laodicea, which was about 12 miles away from Colossae. He also refers to several fellow Christians, some of whom are mentioned in other letters as well, including Tychicus, Onesimus, Aristarchus, Mark, Epaphras, and Luke.
Chapter Summary:
The first verse of chapter 4 is actually the last thought from Paul's prior comments about bondservants and masters. After this, Paul gives the Christian perspective on conversation. The way believers speak has a large impact on the effectiveness of our message. Paul then ends his letter with news and messages between various Christian ministers. Among these are names which Paul mentions again in other letters, such as Tychicus, Epaphras, Archippus, and Onesimus.
Chapter Context:
Prior chapters in this letter established the supremacy of Christ, provided counters to false teaching, and gave instructions for Christian living. Chapter 4 completes these instructions with a general command regarding Christian conversation. Paul then ends the letter with news and comments related to various fellow Christian believers. This follows the general pattern for Paul's letters: introduction, theory, application, personal news and farewell.
Book Summary:
The book of Colossians describes Christ as superior to all other teachers, faiths, and philosophies. In this letter, written from prison, Paul once again tackles false teachings. Among these errors are claims that Christians need to give up all physical enjoyments, that they should worship angels, and that they need to rely on the wisdom of an elite few. These problems are consistent with an ancient heresy known as Gnosticism. In response, Paul explains that Christ is supreme, and sufficient for our salvation.
Accessed 4/24/2024 5:42:47 PM
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