New Defender's Study Bible Notes
4:12 Epaphras. There is no actual record in Scripture that Paul ever actually visited Colosse, or that he established the church there. Nevertheless, he seemed to know personally many of the Colossian believers, especially Philemon (note especially Philemon 19,22). Perhaps Epaphras, who had served as one of their pastors and teachers, kept in close touch with Paul, and possibly had even been in prison with Paul and Aristarchus (Colossians 4:10) at the time Paul was writing this epistle. Epaphras also had evidently ministered in the nearby churches at Laodicea and Hierapolis (Colossians 4:13).
4:12 always labouring fervently. Ephaphras was a true “prayer warrior,” always interceding for the Christians at Colosse. The word translated “labouring fervently” is agonizomai. The same word is translated “strive” in Luke 13:24 and “fight” in I Timothy 6:12. In English it is transliterated as “agonize.”