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Colossians 3:16 & meaning...


the word of Christ dwell in you richly; in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your heart to the Lord.

Colossians 3:16


Colossians 3 [12.] Put on therefore, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, a heart of compassion, kindness, lowliness, humility, and perseverance; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, if any man has a complaint against any; even as Christ forgave you, so you also do.

Colossians 3 [14.] Above all these things, walk in love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your heart to the Lord.

Colossians 3 [17.] Whatever you do, in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father, through him.


This verse, penned by the Apostle Paul, is a profound exhortation for believers to immerse themselves in the word of Christ and to let it influence every aspect of their lives and community interactions. Addressing False Teachings: Paul wrote to the Colossians to address false teachings that were threatening the church, emphasizing the supremacy and sufficiency of Christ.

Christian Living: In Colossians 3, Paul transitions to practical instructions on Christian living, focusing on the new life believers have in Christ. He urges them to set their hearts on things above and to put to death their earthly nature.

  • Instructions for Community Life:

Verses 12-15: Before verse 16, Paul encourages the Colossians to clothe themselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving each other. He highlights love as the binding force of perfect unity and calls for the peace of Christ to rule in their hearts.


  • Dwelling of the Word:

"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly": Paul urges believers to let Christ’s teachings and the message of the gospel inhabit their lives deeply and abundantly. This means more than just superficial engagement; it involves a thorough and transformative integration of Christ’s word into every part of life.

Richly: The adverb “richly” suggests an abundant, overflowing presence of Christ’s word, influencing thoughts, attitudes, and actions.

  • Teaching and Admonishing:

"In all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another": The community is called to share and impart wisdom to one another. Teaching involves instructing and guiding others in the truths of Christ, while admonishing involves warning and correcting each other with love and wisdom.

Mutual Edification: This reciprocal instruction fosters spiritual growth and unity within the community, emphasizing the collective responsibility to nurture one another’s faith.

  • Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs:

"With psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs": These elements of worship are vital tools for teaching and admonishing. They allow the truths of Christ to be expressed and reinforced in memorable and impactful ways.

Psalms: Refers to the Old Testament psalms, which were used in Jewish worship and early Christian gatherings.

Hymns: Songs of praise that declare the greatness and works of God, often focusing on Christ.

Spiritual Songs: General songs inspired by the Spirit, encompassing a wide range of spiritual expressions and themes.

  • Grace-Filled Singing:

"Singing with grace in your hearts to God": The act of singing is not just a communal activity but an expression of individual and collective gratitude and devotion to God. Grace-filled singing reflects a heart transformed by the gospel, overflowing with thankfulness and joy.

Theological Significance

  • Centrality of Christ’s Word:

Christ-Centered Living: The emphasis on the word of Christ underscores its centrality in the believer’s life. It’s not just a guide but the foundation upon which everything else is built.

Transformative Power: The word of Christ has the power to transform individuals and communities, leading them to live in a manner worthy of the gospel.

  • Role of Worship in Spiritual Growth:

Integration of Worship and Instruction: Worship is both an expression of faith and a means of teaching and edification. Through psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, theological truths are internalized and celebrated.

Heartfelt Devotion: Worship with grace-filled hearts signifies a genuine and heartfelt devotion to God, rooted in the recognition of His grace and mercy.

Practical Applications

  • Immersing in the Word:

Daily Engagement: Make a habit of engaging with Scripture daily. Let the teachings of Christ permeate your thoughts, decisions, and interactions.

Memorization and Meditation: Memorize passages of Scripture and meditate on them regularly. This helps the word of Christ dwell in you richly and influences your life deeply.

  • Teaching and Admonishing One Another:

Small Groups and Bible Studies: Participate in or lead small groups and Bible studies where you can teach, learn, and admonish one another in a loving and supportive environment.

Mentorship: Seek out or become a mentor. Share wisdom and guidance, encouraging each other in the faith.

  • Incorporating Worship in Daily Life:

Singing and Music: Incorporate psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs into your daily routine. Whether through personal worship or communal gatherings, let music be a medium through which the word of Christ is expressed and internalized.

Thankfulness: Cultivate a heart of gratitude. Reflect on God’s grace and let your thankfulness overflow in worship and daily living.

  • Creating a Christ-Centered Community:

Encouragement and Accountability: Foster a culture of encouragement and accountability within your community. Be intentional about building one another up in the faith.

Unity in Diversity: Embrace the diversity of expressions in worship and teaching. Recognize that different forms of worship can all contribute to the richness of the community’s spiritual life.


Ephesians 5:19-20: "Speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs; singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; giving thanks always concerning all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to God, even the Father." Paul’s similar exhortation to the Ephesians reinforces the importance of mutual edification through worship and thankfulness.

Psalm 119:11: "I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you." This verse highlights the importance of internalizing God’s word to guide and protect us from sin.

Hebrews 10:24-25: "Let’s consider how to provoke one another to love and good works, not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching." The author of Hebrews emphasizes the importance of gathering together for mutual encouragement and spiritual growth.

Conclusion: Colossians 3:16 calls believers to let the word of Christ richly dwell within them, guiding their teaching, admonishing, and worship. This verse underscores the transformative power of Christ’s word and the importance of integrating it into every aspect of our lives and community interactions.

By immersing ourselves in Scripture, engaging in mutual edification, and incorporating heartfelt worship, we can create a vibrant, Christ-centered community that reflects God’s love and wisdom. This approach not only nurtures our own spiritual growth but also strengthens the body of Christ, allowing us to live out our faith in meaningful and impactful ways.

As we let the word of Christ dwell in us richly, may our lives be marked by wisdom, grace, and a deep devotion to God, expressed through our teaching, admonishing, and worship together.

addiction - thanks
PIB Scriptures are derived from the World English Bible


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