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Read Introduction to Colossians


“rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.”


Having made three statements about how God strengthens the believer, Paul now makes an assertion about how the believer should respond to what God has done.

“abounding in it with thanksgiving”

As we grow in stability, we must be careful to give God thanks. He is the one who made the provision. Note the emphasis of thanksgiving in Colossians (Co 1:12; 2:7; 3:15,17; 4:2). Mature and stable Christians recognize the work of God’s grace in their hearts.

Give attention to the emphasis on “abounding.” The word “abounding” means overflow. It is one thing to give thanks, but it is another to give thanks abundantly. Gratefulness is a distinguishing mark of the mature believer. Gratefulness comes from experiencing the three previous qualities of stability that God gives.


Thanksgiving is a manifestation of a mature believer who recognizes what God has done in their life.


The capacity of thanksgiving means that we do not grumble and complain about our station in life. We cannot have it both ways. We cannot both criticize and be thankful at the same time.

Someone robbed the great Bible commentator, Dr. Matthew Henry, as he walked along a highway. Afterward, he told his friends there were four things for which he gave thanks. First, he was grateful that he had never been robbed before. After many years of life, this was the first time he had been robbed, and for that, he was grateful. Second, he said, “Though they took all my money, I am glad they did not get very much.” That was something for which to be thankful. Third, he said, “Though they took my money, they did not take my life, and I am grateful for that.” Finally, he suggested, “I am thankful that it was I who was robbed, and not I who robbed.” There was a man who learned how to “overflow with thankfulness!”