Colossians 2:1-8 Seven Marks of a Healthy Church

While Paul has not personally met the church in Colossae (or Laodicea), he has heard about them from his friend Epaphras. As a result, Paul begins to contend fiercely for these churches in prayer. He also sends them this letter in which delineates these seven marks of a healthy church. 

I want you to know how hard I am contending for you and for those at Laodicea, and for all who have not met me personally. My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how disciplined you are and how firm your faith in Christ is. So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ.
— Colossians 2:1-8
Edward Anton