Scripture Reading: Colossians 3:1-14
Colossians 3 is a wonderful chapter. It begins "Since (no if here) ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above," and goes on to show that the things which accrue to all of us because we are united with Christ, should be manifest in our lives.
The "but now" occurs in verse 8, showing that things must be different in our manner of living since we are Christ's. We are to "put off," as a filthy garment, the products of the old life, and put on (verse 12) those things which are evidently the fruit of the Spirit. While Colossians deals with the deeds, the Ephesians Epistle has to do with the two persons who manifest these deeds --- good or bad. And so in Ephesians 4:22-24 we are told to put off...the Old Man, and put on the New Man.
The Old Man manifested our former manner of life, which was corrupt according to the deceitful lusts. The things of the old life are listed in Colossians 3:8. The New Man is created in righteousness and true holiness (Ephesians 4:24). The things that belong in the new life that is ours are listed in Colossians 3:12-14 and include such graces as kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering, and love.
The ability to put off the old and put on the new comes as we own our oneness with Christ, and set our affection on things above. And God wants that our lives should show the change that has taken place. May we yield ourselves to the control of the Holy Spirit.
The purpose of this series is to encourage people to live as loving, compassionate, and peacemaking children of God: Jesus tells us to pray, "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10) God tells us through Micah (6:8), "He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God." And we know from Revelation 21:4 that there will be no more mourning, or crying, or pain, or death. Thus, Christian living requires us to set the standards of these conditions here on earth for our fellow human beings, and for the other animals, as a witness to the rest of the world. To do otherwise is not Christian.