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“Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.” 

 “Scripture quotations marked (NASB) are from the New American Standard Bible® (NASB), copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org ” 

 “Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Standard Version® (NIV®), copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™”

 “Scripture quotations marked (OJB) are from the Orthodox Jewish Bible Copyright Artists for Israel Intl. Used by permission © The Orthodox Jewish Bible fourth edition, OJB. Copyright 2002, 2003, 2008, 2010, 2011 by Artists for Israel International, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”

Colossians 2:14 can be a verse that can be hard to understand. Here it is in the KJV translation;

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 cross;
Colossians 2:14 KJV

A contextually clearer rendering of this verse is as follows;

by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.
Colossians 2:14 ESV

The Interpretation

In the KJV translation, the word ‘handwriting’ may also be translated as ‘bond’ (as per the interlinear text, when reviewing the Strong’s Concordance for Greek word number G5490).

According to various dictionaries [definition 3], the word ‘bond’ relates to ‘debt’ and ‘indebtedness’.

We see renderings here that are similar to the ESV, such as the NASB and NIV English translations – where they also speak of a believer’s ‘record of debt’ / ‘indebtedness’ – which is ‘a record of one’s sins’;

NASB;
having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
Colossians 2:14 NASB

NIV;
having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.
Colossians 2:14 NIV

KJV;
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 cross;
Colossians 2:14 KJV

ESV;
by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.
Colossians 2:14 ESV

Now that we see that the ‘handwriting’ (KJV) or ‘record of debt’ (ESV) is referring to the list of a person’s sins.

When the verse then goes on to speak of ‘ordinances’ (KJV), or ‘legal demands’ (ESV) – and the like; it is referring to the ‘consequences of sin as per the law of Moses’

For many sins, we know that ultimately;

The ‘legal demands’ of many sins as per the Law of Moses is ‘death’ – hence;

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Romans 6:23 KJV

 With this we can see that Colossians 2:14 does not say – in any place – that the law of Moses has been ‘nailed’ to the cross, tree, or stake. The torah not been cancelled out, or abolished – no not at all.

What the verse does in fact say is in fact ‘nailed’ to the ‘cross’ is;

the record of debt [the long ‘list’ of a believer’s sins], along with it’s legal demands that were against us [along with the penalties (legal demands) for sin, that were once recorded against us] have been set aside – nailed to the cross‘.

With this correct interpretation – it is with this faith in Christ (in Moshiach) that,

‘…we uphold the law.’
(Romans 3:31 ESV)

‘...we uphold the Torah.’
(Kehillah in Rome 3:31 OJB)

May the Holy G-d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; bless you, with a beyond maximum increase, in His risen Son the Lord Jesus Christ (Adonai Yehoshua HaMoshiach). Omayn (Amen).

Biblical Translation Copyright disclaimers;

“Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. May not copy or download more than 500 consecutive verses of the ESV Bible or more than one half of any book of the ESV Bible.”

“Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”

Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org

“Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™ “

The Orthodox Jewish Bible Copyright Artists for Israel Intl Used by permission © The Orthodox Jewish Bible fourth edition, OJB. Copyright 2002, 2003, 2008, 2010, 2011 by Artists for Israel International, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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