2:1I want to give you some concept of the tremendous struggle I’m in for your sakes, and also for those in Laodicea and whoever else hasn’t met me in person.2:2The struggle is to console their hearts and unite them in love, in a fully rich and firm conviction of understanding that realizes the secret of God and of the Anointed.2:3All the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are concealed in him.
2:4Now I am saying all this so that no one scams you with smooth talk.2:5Although I am not with you physically I am with you in spirit, and I’m happy to see that you are solidly aligned due to your trust in the Anointed.2:6Seeing that you accepted Anointed Jesus the Master, keep pace with him.2:7You have been founded and constructed in him and confirmed in the faith you were taught, overflowing with gratitude.2:8So beware that no one loots you by means of the philosophy and hollow delusion that come from human tradition; these are aligned with the elements of the world and not with the Anointed.
2:9The entirety of the Divine Nature is embodied in him,2:10and you have been made complete by him who is the source of every rule and authority.2:11You were vicariously “circumcised”— not literally by human hands, but with the stripping-off of the physical body in the “circumcision” of the Anointed.2:12You were buried with him in the immersion, and you were raised with him through faith in what God did when he raised him up from the dead.2:13And yet you are dead— to your blunders and the “un-circumcision” of your flesh. But he made you alive with him and dealt kindly to us in all our blunders,2:14erasing the list of charges that were written up against us, and wiping it away by nailing it to the cross.2:15After getting rid of the rulers and authorities too, he triumphed over them and boldly made a public spectacle of them.
2:16So then, do not let anyone judge you about food and drink, or about observing festivals or new moons or Sabbaths;2:17those are all shadows of what is to come. As the body of the Anointed,2:18let no one play the part of a referee against you. They’re always going on about their humility and seeing Messengers in their rituals— legends in their own carnal minds.2:19They have lost connection with the Head out of whom the entire body grows from God, who supplies the ligaments and connects it all together.
2:20So if, along with the Anointed, the elements of the world are now dead to you, why, as though you still live in the world, do you subject yourselves to its rules?2:21“You should stay away from this, stop tasting that, don’t touch those”…2:22all those things will decay and be used up, since they are merely human edicts and instructions.2:23They do seem on the surface to be pious acts of wisdom and humility with their physical deprivations, but they are of no value for satisfying cravings.