Colossians 2: Handwriting of Ordinances

Colossians 2 - Handwriting of Ordinances

Colossians 2:8- Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Messiah.

This is what the remaining section of Colossians chapter 2 is all about. This theme remains constant throughout but men have tried to change it to Yahweh’s commandments rather than the commandments and traditions of men.

9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of our Mighty One (Godhead) bodily. 10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:

So we need none other doctrines because we are complete in Yahushua who is the head of all. We are complete in Him. We don’t need anything that men might invent.

11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Messiah

In Yahushua, we are circumcised in the heart by His blood covering our sins thereby separating us from our sins.

12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with [him] through the faith of the operation of Yahweh, who hath raised him from the dead.

We buried the old man and we are now a new creation so we shouldn’t be going back to any old traditions and philosophies

13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his tree (cross);

When we are forgiven of our sins, those old traditions, doctrines and ordinances of men which are AGAINST us are taken out of the way. They have no power over us any longer if we are in Yahushua.

Do these ordinances have power over men who are without Yahushua? Yes they do! They enslave men to sin!

Romans 6:16 (NKJV) Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin [leading] to death, or of obedience [leading] to righteousness? 17 But Yahweh be thanked that [though] you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.

Colo 1:13 (NKJV) He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed [us] into the kingdom of the Son of His love,

Therefore, the power that these ordinances had over us was nailed to the tree along with our sins for when we are forgiven for our sins, we are also set free from their hold on us. Anyone who has repented and accepted Yahushua after a lifetime of sin can attest to this fact!!

But now the question is asked: “What ordinances of men?”

Paul will expand on this in verses 18 and 21 but for now lets go to the next verse..

15 [And] having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.

He overcame and disarmed the spirits of darkness, the evil angels. He triumphed over Satan and all his powers. He Put them to an open shame by triumphing over them in his resurrection and ascension.

Now if verse 14 was speaking of Yahweh’s commandments then why in the next verse is it talking about disarming Satan? Yahweh is the author of the true commandments. Satan is the author of the Pagan commandments that Paul is speaking of here.

16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath [days]: 17 Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body [is] of Messiah

Notice that these things ARE a shadow of things to come. Not WERE a shadow but ARE a shadow. We will be keeping these things in Yahweh’s kingdom. (See Zech. 14, Isa 66)

In this scripture, the words in parentheses are added by the translator. This is because the translator did not understand or had a biased opinion about what the Greek text meant. Here is how this should read:

16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath 17 which are a shadow of things to come; but the body of Messiah

Of all the modern translations, only a few such as the King James Version translate the word “Body” in verse 17 correctly. The NIV totally butchers this verse.

The word “body” in verse 17 does mean “body”. It is Strong’s #4983. Look it up and see for yourself.

In the KJV, this Greek word is translated:

  • “body” 144 times
  • “bodily” 1 time in 2cor. 10:10
  • “slave” one time in Rev. 18:3.

In fact, this same Greek word is translated “body” only two verses later! Now, keeping that in mind this verse should read :

Let no man therefore judge you in meat, drink, etc (which are a shadow of things to come) BUT THE BODY OF MESSIAH!

In other words, we should let only the body of the Messiah judge us! Can we as brethren in Messiah judge each other? Certainly!

1 Cor 5:11 (NKJV) But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner–not even to eat with such a person. 12 For what [have] I [to] [do] with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? 13 But those who are outside Yahweh judges. Therefore “put away from yourselves the evil person.”

Does a man not pass a judgment on his brother when he sees his brother in sin? Of course! But when this is the case, we must restore this man in gentleness:

Galatians 6:1 (NKJV) Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who [are] spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.

James 5:19 (NKJV) Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, 20 let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins

Don’t let these pagans judge us in these things. This indicates that the Gentiles in Colosse were keeping Yahweh’s commandments as they should.

Please consult any Greek new testament to verify that what I am saying is true! “Body of Messiah”

18 Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 19 And not holding the Head, from which all the body <#4983>by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of Yahweh.

Verse 18 is a mirror of verse 8. This scripture further proves that Paul is not talking about taking away Yahweh’s commandments in verse 16 but rather the commandments of men such as worshipping of angels…and here we are talking about the BODY of Messiah again! This is consistent with what we talked about above in verse 17 and why it should be translated “body”.

A variation of this word (“soma”) is “somatikos” (which is Strong’s #4985). This word is also translated “bodily” in verse 9 above. Therefore, verses 18 and 19 are a mirror of verses 8 and 9 above. This shows us that the context of what Paul was saying in verse 8 and 9 has not changed.

Therefore, these verses are good summary: Stand fast in Yahweh’s commandments and shun the commandments and doctrines of men.

20 Wherefore if ye be dead with Messiah from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances

Remember back in verse 14 when we asked, “What ordinances of men?” These are among the ordinances that were blotted out:

21 (Touch not; taste not; handle not; 22 Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men?

Again, these are the ordinances of men that were blotted out. Taken out of the way. They are all commandments and doctrines of men. Not Yahweh’s commandments.

To further prove this point, let us look at the Greek words that are translated “ordinances”

In verse 14 the Greek word that is translated “ordinances” is the Greek word “Dogma” which means “ordinances”

In verse 21 the Greek word that is translated “be subject to ordinances” is “Dogmatizo” which means “be subject to ordinances”.

The root word (Dogma, Ordinance) remains constant. The only difference is in the phrase.

23 Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.

Col 3:1- If ye then be risen with Messiah, seek those things which are above, where Messiah sitteth on the right hand of Yahweh. 2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Messiah in Yahweh.

So in conclusion, Paul is saying that we should beware lest any man spoil us through these commandments, philosophies and doctrines of men. For Yahushua took them out of the way and nailed them to the tree thereby forgiving us for accepting them. Because of this we should let no man judge us for keeping Yahweh’s commandments unless they are a part of the body of the Messiah.

Therefore we should hold fast to the Head of that body, namely Yahushua from whom we are nourished and do not subject ourselves to pagan ordinances. For even though these have an appearance of wisdom, they are of no value. So we should set our minds on things above, not on the things of the world.