Your salvation doesn't just secure your eternal future, it changes what and how you work today.
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Colossians 3 (ESV)
1 If then you have been raised with Christ,
seek the things
that are above,
where Christ is,
seated at the right hand of God.
2 Set your minds
on things that are above,
not on things that are on earth.
3 For you
and your life is hidden
4 When Christ
who is your life appears,
you also will appear
with him in glory.
5 Put to death therefore what is earthly in you:
sexual immorality, impurity, passion,
evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
6 On account of these
the wrath of God is coming.
7 In these
you too once walked,
when you were living in them.
8 But now you must put them all away:
anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.
9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that
you have put off the old self with its practices
10 and have put on the new self, which is being
renewed in knowledge
after the image of its creator.
11 Here there is not
Greek and Jew,
circumcised and uncircumcised,
but Christ is all, and in all.
12 Put on then, as God’s
holy and beloved,
compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,
13 bearing with one another
if one has a complaint against another,
forgiving each other;
as the Lord has forgiven you,
so you also must forgive.
14 And above all these put on love,
which binds everything together
in perfect harmony.
15 And let the peace of Christ rule
in your hearts,
to which indeed you were called in one body.
And be thankful.
16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,
teaching and admonishing
in all wisdom,
psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
17 And whatever you do,
in word or deed,
in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through him.
to your husbands,
as is fitting in the Lord.
love your wives,
and do not be harsh with them.
obey your parents in everything,
for this pleases the Lord.
do not provoke your children,
lest they become discouraged.
obey in everything those who are your earthly masters,
by way of eye-service,
with sincerity of heart,
fearing the Lord.
23 Whatever you do,
as for the Lord
and not for men,
24 knowing that from the Lord
you will receive the inheritance as your reward.
You are serving the Lord Christ.
25 For the wrongdoer will be paid back for the wrong he has done,
and there is no partiality.
Colossians 3 Summary
These are two of the most powerful letters in our lives. This little word conditions your life. If things go well, then you will get good things, but if things go poorly, then it will be a disaster.
Recognizing the power of these words, Paul brings his short letter to the Colossians to a crescendo:
If you have been raised with Christ... (v1)
Since you have experienced this powerful spiritual change in reality, this particular if isn't followed by a bunch of hypotheticals which may or may not happen, rather the if sets the conditions you must live by:
Seek the things that are above (v1)
Set your minds on things above (v2)
Put your indwelling sin to death (v5, 8)
Put on a lifestyle that reflects God (v12)
Let the peace of Christ rule in your life (v15)
Be thankful (v15)
Let the word of Christ dwell in you (v16)
Do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus (v17)
Mutually submit to those you're in relationship with (v18-22)
It becomes way too easy for us to tolerate little sins. In fact, we still hang on to the old latin word for 'little sins' - peccadillos. You may not be engaging in the major sins mentioned in v5, but don't be too quick to give yourself a pass on all of the peccadillos in your life. It says to PUT TO DEATH (harsh language!) whatever belongs to your earthly nature... both big sins and little ones.
The primary weapon you've been given for this lethal battle is the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God (Eph. 6:17).
You're not told to just to have little bits and pieces of God's Word in your life. Verse 16 calls you to let the Word of Christ live richly in you. The richer your intake of God's Word is, the richer you will experience the peace of Christ (v15). So don't be cheap with your Bible intake!
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: God our Father, the one in whom our life is hidden (v3)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Ask God to strengthen you to set your heart and mind on things above (v1-2)
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: