Friday, December 22, 2006

Resurrection Life

If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all. Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. Colossians 3:1-17

This chapter begins with an obvious assumption, that of our being raised with Christ. Therefore what follows is based upon our identification with Christ in His death and resurrection. As such, we are then commanded to live in a certain way and reckon the body of sin dead to its former passions and lusts.

Verse 2 gives us the key; setting our minds on the things above, where Christ is. Many times we read in scripture of the need to guard our minds from corrupting thoughts. Our mind is the gateway to our heart and as such we must guard what we allow to be entertained there. What we allow into our minds ultimately enters our heart and becomes the things we wrap our affections around. This is where idolatry begins, by entertaining wrong thoughts which effectively ensnare our heart in misguided adoration.

We are warned to bring every thought to the obedience of Christ, and furthermore this is where Satan begins to attack our faith. If we resist the devil, he will flee from us. David wrote, "Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against Thee". He obviously understood the need to train his mind to focus on scripture and by doing so, his response would be to medidate on the law of God, thereby restraining him from sinning.

As believers today, we have not only the word of God but also His holy Spirit. His indwelling Spirit is opposed to our fleshly desires as scripture says, "the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh". They are indeed contrary to one another. By taking God's grace, we are able to overcome the flesh, the world, and the devil. God has commanded that we live an overcoming life, we have no legitimate right to sin or excuse for the same. He has provided all the means for our victory, His very life and nature. Christ Himself is our victory and wants to express Himself through our lives. However, we must daily yield to Him and by taking up our cross, deny our own lusts and selfish pleasures.

God's grace is the enabling quality to overcome any temptation, sin, or trial. For where sin did abound, grace did much more abound. We are never beyond the place where his grace cannot lift us up. God's grace is simply Christ offering Himself as our supply.


13 comments:

Bhedr said...

Thanks brother. Good post.

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Blaurock said...

You're right on the money. Jesus Christ is the Vine, and gives us all we need as branches.

J. Wendell said...

Merry Christmas!

Bhedr said...

Merry Christmas!!

jazzycat said...

Great points. We are called to cooperate with God's grace and grow in sanctification. I just did a post on grace. Everything begins with God's grace.
W.H.

Joe said...

Happy New Year!

Gojira said...

Good post!

J. Wendell said...

BTW That is a great post!

Jim said...

Hey brothers, thanks for stopping by.

Jonathan Moorhead said...

I agree, good post.

Bhedr said...

Yes Good post even a month later. Jim you are going to have to link yourself under blogs on Hiatus!

Jim said...

Ha ha Brian, that is for sure!