For I bear him record - Paul had had abundant opportunity to know what were his feelings in regard to these churches.
A great zeal for you - A great desire to promote your welfare.
And them that are in Laodicea - Laodicea was the capital of Phrygia, and not far from Colossae, There was a church there. See the Introduction, and the notes at Colossians 4:16.
And them in Hierapolis - This was also a city in Phrygia, and not far from Laodicea and Colossae. It was situated under a hill to the north, and had on the south a large plain about five miles over. On the south of that plain, and opposite to Hierapolis, was Laodicea, with the river Lycus running between them, nearer to Laodicea than to Hierapolls. This place is now called by the Turks Pambuck-Kulasi, or the Cotton-Tower, on account of the white cliffs which lie round about it. It is now utterly forsaken and desolate, but the ruins are so magnificent as to show that it was once one of the most splendid cities in the East. It was celebrated for the hot springs in its vicinity; and on account of the numerous temples erected there, it received the name of Hierapolis, or the holy city. The principal deity worshipped there was Apollo. See Travels by T. Smith. B. D. 1678. Compare the notes at Colossians 4:16. From the allusion to it here, it would seem that there were Christians there in the time of Paul, though there is no mention of a church there. It is nowhere else mentioned in the New Testament.
Other Barnes' Notes entries containing Colossians 4:13:
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