Sunday, April 15, 2007

Colossians 3:1-10 --- Being Renewed?

1Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 5Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.

What an incredible picture of both justification and sanctification at work in the life of a believer. It depicts the importance of both and demonstrates how sanctification flows out of justification for someone who has truly been raised with Christ. You see, this clearly shows how justification and sanctification will, no must, be a daily experience and expression of who we are in Christ.

Let’s look at how clearly these two components of salvation and the Christian life are broken out in these passages.

Justification (the indicative statements): you have died – v3; you have been raised with Christ – v1; you are hidden with Christ (with him); you have taken off old self – v9; you have put on new self – v10.

Sanctification (the imperative statements): set your hearts on things above – v1; set your minds on things above – v2; put to death what belongs to your earthly nature (stop sinning) – v5; rid yourself of all practices that characterize the unregenerate self (stop sinning … continued).

In summary, if we are truly justified then we will be actively living out sanctification. Verse 10 also depicts the process of sanctification, or the putting on of the new self, as a process. It states that the new self is “being renewed”. This indicates a process. Sanctification is a process. Here are some questions that we should be asking ourselves: am I actively engaged in the process; do I daily seek to put to death what belongs to my earthly nature; am I setting my heart and mind on the things of God, or am I living for myself?

Lord, continue to challenge me. Thank you for clearly revealing how justification and sanctification work together and are your holy components of salvation. Thank you for your grace that is both atoning and transforming. Thank you that the transformation happens now and not just when I die and meet you in heaven. Thank you for the present reality of salvation.

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