Thank You, God, for raising me up with Christ and seating me with Him in victory over sin and deceit and death. Please help me today to put off my old ways of thinking and speaking and acting, and to put on the new ways of Christ. Clothe me today with love as I thankfully serve Christ. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Read Colossians 3:1-17
Colossians 3:1–4 The heart of Paul’s letter to the Colossians is a practical description of growth in the Christian life. Notice the three sets of commands in the first part of Colossians 3.
The first step of the cycle of growth is to treasure the things of the kingdom of God. Paul told the Colossian saints to “seek the things that are above” and to “set [their] minds on things that are above.” In other words, those who have died with Christ to sin and have been raised to new life with Him need to constantly refocus their thoughts and affections on the person of Christ, His promises, and His commands.
Colossians 3:5–10 The second step in the cycle of growth is to put off the old ways of sin. The Colossian saints must “put to death what is earthly in [them]”—everything from sexual immorality, which defiles the body, to idolatry, which defiles the soul. Paul also instructed the Colossians to “put away” things such as anger, slander, and obscenities. They should no longer lie to each other, since they had already gotten rid of the “old self” and “put on the new self.”
PUT ON . . .
Watch this brief video that explains what it might look like to to “Put on the Real Jesus.” (3:00)
Video posted under Standard YouTube License
PUT ON AND PUT OFF
Watch a visual representation of Colossians 3. (1:26)
©2016 New Heights Church. https://www.newheightschurch.com. Used by permission.
Colossians 3:11–17 The third step in the cycle of growth is to put on the character and habits of Christ. The Colossian saints were to “put on” characteristics such as compassion and patience; above all, they must “put on love.” Those who seek the things of the kingdom should submit to the rule of Christ’s peace. Instead of seeking their own way, they were to let Christ’s word overflow from them to bless others.
All of this is both the work of God and a gift from God. As a result, Christians should be marked supremely by thankfulness.
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 have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
- Think about the statements from Colossians 3:1–4: If you have died to sin, if you have been raised with Christ, if when He returns you will be glorified with Him, how does that change what you want to treasure today?
- Examine your daily habits of repentance and confession.
- How much is your life marked by thankfulness? Take some time today to think about God’s kindness to you in the gospel.
- Evaluate how you are doing in treasuring Christ, putting off sin, and putting on the character and habits of Christ. Confess your sins to a brother or sister in Christ this week and ask them to pray for you in these areas.
- Explain the cycle of growth in Colossians 3 to someone this week.
- Continue to get to know your ethnically different friend; keep pursuing these kinds of new relationships. Have you found any people of peace? Learn more about their faith and then research it when you get home. Find out if there are any churches in your area made up of people from the country of one of your new friends. If so, try to meet with someone from that church to learn how to better engage your friend. [All Peoples, Making Disciples]