Hidden with Christ (Colossians 3:1-17)February 12, 2023 | Kyle Bjerga
The following is an uncorrected transcript generated by a transcription service. Before quoting in print, please check the corresponding audio for accuracy.
are there in one of the black pew Bibles. It’s page 955. So you can find it there. When you came to church this morning, before you came, you probably gave some thought to what you were going to wear. Some of us probably gave more thought to that than others, some probably just grab whatever was closest to you. Because you had to get out the door. Right? And so when we when we come to clothing, there’s just different approaches. There’s even research done to say like, why do you choose the clothes you do? Why do you wear the things that you do? A couple months ago, many of you probably receive some new clothes at Christmas. And when you many of you were not happy about that, if you’re younger, and some the other ones i Hey, I finally got a new outfit for the year. So whatever it was, when you open that box, there was something that was clean. That was wrinkle free, that had some tags on it, maybe a new smell, everything was good. And yet, for all the new clothes that we have received over the years, there’s probably that one thing, whether that was years ago, or maybe it’s right now that one thing that you love to wear, and it’s not new, it’s old. It’s the one thing we should probably throw away. Or at least somebody in our family wants us to throw it away. But it’s one thing that you should throw away should get rid of and you should replace with something else. Maybe it’s a shirt shoes, a hoodie that’s really comfortable a hat that you like to wear. But it’s hard to get rid of those things. For one simple word. What is it? Why would you not get rid of something old that you wear, because it is comfortable. It is comfortable. All right. And if you go further, then there’s other reasons maybe it smells like you and you’re just like this is just, this is me, this is who I am, this is what I wear. Some of you may say I haven’t broken in. Right? It’s it’s been really well used. It’s just comfortable. For others, it’s sentimental reasons, your wedding dress, or somebody gifted you something that you hold on to. Or maybe it was that vacation that you bought this shirt and you have a lot of memories attached to it. And it doesn’t matter if there’s stains on it. If it’s faded, if it’s ripped, if there’s holes, one, two, or three or more, it doesn’t matter because it’s comfortable, and it means something to you. The new stuff, stuff looks good, but jeans are really uncomfortable when you first put them on, shoes aren’t always that great because you haven’t broken them in and they give you blisters, the new shirt itches your skin, whatever it might be. It’s new. And yet, it’s just not quite what you’re used to. You like the old comfortable stuff, maybe that doesn’t resonate with you, let’s let’s look at it the other side, maybe we walk into your closet, and there’s a bunch of new stuff with a lot of the tags still on them. Or maybe you wear it once or twice and you don’t plan on wearing it ever again. But it sits there. All sorts of reasons for that. Of course, it just doesn’t feel right. It didn’t look as good on me as it did on the mannequin. It’s buyer’s remorse, we buy a lot of things. And then we just let it sit there regretting that we ever bought it but don’t want to just get rid of it. And still others of you are at Goodwill or dropping things off the clothes closet every other weekend. Because there’s just another closet to go through. The amount of people that I see come through here from the community in the same cars astonishes me to drop things off for the clothes closet. It’s all the time, wherever maybe you fall in one of those categories. Today we’re going to see though that clothing has a lot to do with the Christian life. We have a lot in common. And Paul is going to show us that before we get there, we have to remember where we were last week because we are kind of moving into a new section of this letter that Paul wrote to the church in Colossae. So last week, we saw that self made or man made rules and lists cannot restrain our sinful nature can’t do it, that constant pull back to the things that are contrary to God’s Word Lists and rules and traditions cannot do that. So instead we talked about that we need to have a delightful death to these things. And that we can instead be free. And so Brannon shows that the big idea from the past is last week was that since you died, live free since you died live, free death and dying in the Christian life leads to life. real true life. Now, last week was a warning passage saying don’t do these things. And this week is a continuation and we’re going to be answering this question How can I live free? How can I live free? It is a life changing question. So here’s the big idea today. You’ll see In your outline, because they’re in your notes, because it is our outline for today. So we live free by seeking the things above, by putting to death the old self and clothing ourselves in the new life. So let’s look first at the fact that we live free. By seeking the things above, look at verses one through four. Since then you have been raised with Christ, set your heart on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds and things above, not on earthly things, For you died and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. So we set our hearts on things above the word there is really is literally seek, okay, we want to seek these things, meaning we strive, and we pursue them continually with our whole life, which is why it says, Seek your with your hearts, right, set your hearts on things above. A few verses earlier, Paul just said Don’t let humans commands and teachings and all these different rules. Don’t Don’t let them be the thing that you run to stop looking at the earthly things. That’s what we’re seeing here, stop looking at the earthly things and look up, pursue Jesus, don’t look at all the things you could do. Instead, look at what has been done. That’s a big difference in the Christian life and every other religion in the world. Don’t look at what I can do look at what has been done, and what has been done, you have been raised with Christ. And one of the most important doctrines, things we can spend time on over and over again, is the idea of our union with Christ, our union with Christ. And this passage is one of the fullest descriptions of what that doctrine is. Four different times in this passage we read with Christ or with him. And John Stott, in his book Life in Christ says this to be with Christ is more than to enjoy his companionship. It is rather to share in the four major events of his whole saving career, his death, resurrection, ascension and return in such a way that we have experienced the first three, and will one day experience the fourth with him. So seeking the things above then means knowing the truth of what it means to be with Jesus means more specifically, the past, present and future realities that we have with Christ. So brothers and sisters, if you are in Christ today, if you are with him, these are the things we’re supposed to set our minds on. And there’s four of them, that we see in this first section. So the first is something that happened in the past, you have died, not you are dead. Not that you will die. You have your death happened 2000 years ago, on a cross in Christ because you are with him. In the past, the second thing you have been raised, when he walked out of that grave three days after he was killed, you walked out of that grave. It happened because we are with Christ. So death is defeated, a New life is given and we get to walk in it. What about the present? Look at verse three. Your life is now hidden with Christ in God. So right now we are with Christ hidden with him. And where is he? Where is he? He is seated at the right hand of God. So this is something true that for all of us that we cannot see. And nobody else can see either we are hidden with Christ. Right now. Ephesians two says a little bit more. It says and God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms. In Christ Jesus, this is reality now. We are safe and secure hidden in Jesus who sits because his work is done. His work is done. Which means our work is done. Do you see that? With Christ, our work for salvation is done. Not our work of what the Christian life looks like as Paul is gonna go on to explain what this life should be and what we do in response to this truth. But Christ is seated because there’s nothing else you or I could do to be saved. It is done. And finally we have a future reality verse for you will appear with Him in glory. There is a day when Christ will return and he will not be hidden any longer and we will not be hidden any longer. When he appears we will appear with him
with him. So that is our past that is our present that is our future if we are with Christ. In chapter one, verse 27 of Colossians we read that Christ is in you, the hope of glory. So Christ is in you and you You are in Christ united to him in his life, death, resurrection, ascension, and future coming. How does Paul explain this elsewhere? galoshes. Galatians 220 what you heard Caitlin read, a little while ago, I had been crucified with Christ, dead. I’ve been crucified with Christ and is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me. The life I now live, I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Death leads to life, real true life. These are the things we’re supposed to seek. These are the heavenly things. These are the things that are above. We need to seek them pursue them with everything we have why? Listen to what AW Tozer says, On the doctrine of the union with Christ. He says, I will never be through talking about the union of the soul with the Savior, the conscious union of the believers heart with Jesus. Remember, I’m not talking about a theological union only, just something I believe. And I say with my head, I am speaking also of a conscious union, a union that is felt and experienced. We seek the things above because we want to pursue that feeling and that experience of what it means to be united with Christ. We don’t want to just say it and believe it with our heads, we want to live it out and go deeper into it. Now, it isn’t just for our future life. We have new life now. And we can live and walk in it. Now I’m convinced the longer I’m in ministry, that there are people here today, who can wrap their minds around the fact that God saved them. You say I’ve called upon the name of Jesus, I believe that he saved me, but you do not believe that you can change. You do not believe that you can maybe change in any sort of significant way. And I say that, from hearing that from people. This is who I am. This is how God made me. I can’t change. I’ve gotten this far. And I don’t think I’d go any farther. And I think what you’re going to see today is that Paul gives us a framework of what it means to actually change what we can do and how God works in us to change. Because you need to remember, first and foremost that you are with Christ died, raised to life with Him in the heavenly realms now, and you will appear with Him in glory in the future. So the truth is for you, for all of us, we have a new wardrobe. We have a new wardrobe in Christ. He’s given us the finest clothes, this eternal walk in closet with everything we could ever want. All of it is ours. There isn’t some backroom that will eventually get to one day, all of it is theirs right now, is there right now for us. name brands, if you’d like that sort of thing. It’s the best of the best, because he wouldn’t give us any less. And yet we go home. And we see that there’s still another closet, an old closet, we’ve been given everything, but we’ve got this old closet that’s there. And we look at it and say I’m really going to miss this stuff. It’s really, really hard to start putting it in garbage bags, all the things that have attachments to them, like people and memories, like a wedding dress. But that’s the old stuff. That’s the old doesn’t matter if it’s comfortable. We have to get rid of it. But the temptation is to be drawn back and say I just want to slip into something, I know something. I’m familiar with something that’s comfortable. So I’m not going to get rid of everything. I’ll get rid of some of it. And that temptation is there for all of us in the Christian life. So the second thing that we need to do is to live free is put to death, the old self, look at verses five through 11. Put to death therefore whatever belongs to your earthly nature, sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways in life you once lived, but now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other since you’ve taken off your old self with its practices, and have put on the new self which has been renewed and knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, barbarian, Scythian, slave, or free, but Christ is all and is in all. So we put to death. The old self. Now Paul moves back and forth. Have you heard it in this section, saying this is what we need to do. We need to take drastic action and remember who you are. Remember the old self remember the new self he keeps doing that? Because I think for all of us, we need to keep hearing that. We had to keep your hand this is who you are. This was your old way. This is your new life. That has to be the motivation for what we’re going to do if we want to put our sin to death. So we need to remember our identity to keep moving forward. Word in things like the earthly things, the things of the earthly nature need to be killed in our lives. And Paul is not being overdramatic, this is not hyperbole. He gives us two lists of vices, five of them in each. And it’s because of these he says in verse six that the wrath of God is coming. God’s wrath is his righteous anger to those who have rebelled against Him who have chosen their own way over him. And this is why Paul uses the language of putting our sin to death. Our problem is that a holy God cannot continue to let sin go, and he will will put an end to it one day everybody will be held accountable. But in the Christians life, the penalty of sin has been taken care of. In the Christians life, the power of sin, and evil has been defeated. Just look back with me in chapter two. Go back to chapter two, verse 13. And let’s see that says, when you were dead in your sins, and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us, he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross, the penalty of sin for the Christian is gone. It was on the cross with Christ. Look at verse 13. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them triumphing over them by the cross these powers and authorities that were evil that were telling us to go a different way than Christ’s way these have been defeated. So that is the truth for us in Christ, that all of that is gone. However, we know the presence of sin is still here. The presence of sin is still around us, and will be until the end. So Christ has won the war. And now he gives us the ability through His Spirit through putting the death of these things and putting on the new self that we can win the battle, day by day. And thankfully, in Jesus, we are spared this wrath that is coming. And so we ask ourselves, why would I want to live in old life? Why would I want to go back to something like that, that brings wrath and destruction and death? Why would I want to be reminded of that reality, day in and day out? Now, the list of the vices here are in verses five and eight, does not exhaust every sin does not exhaust every reason why God’s wrath is coming. The point here is to show that anything that runs contrary to God’s word must be taken seriously, must be put to death. And so the first list we have here is focused on sexual sin. All of the words here can be used to describe the thoughts and actions of someone who follows the idol of sex. Well, that’s greed or lust or impurity or sexual immorality, it’s the thoughts to things we say it’s the things that we do. So why is that? Well, Scripture a lot of times uses sexual sin, to talk through really that downward spiral of sin. Think about Romans one. So Scripture uses this a lot to talk through what this actually looks like, what what addiction looks like. And so what we see in this list, that anything, the words that are used, or anything that’s outside of God’s creation of man, and woman in marriage, experiencing sexual intimacy together must be put to death. And that means everything that’s in here, too, we always think about the actions and things out there. But remember what Jesus said, If we look at a woman last week, we committed adultery in our hearts. His wrath is coming because of that, too. So it’s all encompassing. And I think that’s what sexual sin shows us and why Paul uses it here. Because he knew that people had a hard time with this. And hey, by the way, we do too.
Is there anything that makes people more upset in this country than talking about sexual identity, or how you live out that sexual identity, it’s not just for the church and Colossians For us, as well, if you can understand what it means to put to death, this sin that’s going to help you put to death other sins. So I think that’s one reason why Paul uses it here. But of course, he could have used all sorts of different things, all sorts. And so he goes on to a second list. And this is much more about social sins, how we interact with others. Really, it’s our attitude first, and then our action toward others. So we have this list of anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips, and line. So anger, we’ve talked about anger before, sometimes you can’t do anything about the fact that your blood pressure goes up. When something happens to you when somebody hurts you. Like that’s going to happen. This is talking about do you live a life of anger? Are you always going out there just looking for that next thing, the next person? That’s the anger that is talking about here, do you have this attitude of have anger. And then you move into rage. Rage is really where you take action on this thing. So think of it this way, when you’re in traffic and you get angry, anybody angry this morning on the way in? Okay, so you get angry and traffic, what do we call it when you’ve moved from anger to doing something about it? Road rage, right? So you so you’re angry a lot of us get angry in the car, but we won’t, we won’t fulfill what we want to do. But when that happens, it’s called road rage. We’re taking it from this attitude to actions. And then you have malice. And malice is really the intention to hurt others you want bad things for them. Slander and filthy language have to do with our tongues. What do we say to and about others? We know the tongue is powerful, we know it can ruin reputations, and leave people’s lives in ruins just simply by what we say to them, or to others about them. And then lying, of course brings disunity. And it brings distrust. So if you were to ask people in this community of Elmhurst, the surrounding communities what they thought about our church, would they use these types of words about us? If they did, that would be devastating, right? I don’t think they would, I don’t think that’s what we’re known for. I don’t think people use these words to describe us as a church. But think, personally, now. Think of your life. Would the people your friends, families, co workers, neighbors, would they use these types of words to describe their interactions with you. We have to sit with these lists, and pray and identify the things that the Lord wants us to kill in our lives. So whether it’s sexual sin, whether it’s these, this list here, we need to take it seriously. And Paul says, Don’t do any of this. That’s your old life. It’s your former way of life you used to live in that take off the old clothes, there is something better for you. The clothes you like they stink. They’re worn, they’re tattered, they’re faded. You need to get rid of them put on the new clothes, and you’ll find that they’re better than the last. So my question for all of us, is how are you doing it killing the sin in your life. Sin is not meant to be kept around. We cannot train it. We cannot control it. We cannot bring it out on just some occasions when we’re really feeling down. It must be ended, they must be killed. Because the wrath of God is coming because of it. So Jesus didn’t die for some of our sin. He died for all of it. So he wants to go after all of it in our life, too. We didn’t die two parts of our life and Christ, we die to our former way of life in Christ. years ago, there was a show that maybe some of you watch, I know the premise of it, I think. So if it doesn’t make sense, I don’t understand the premise of it was called What Not to Wear. And so these people would go, somebody would send the video in and say this person has no fashion sense. And they would show them videos and pictures of what this person looks like. And so they have these two fashion, people look at it and then come into their house, and they have the person who get dressed and all these clothes, and basically just tell them what looks terrible on them. That That doesn’t look good. You need to get rid of that stuff. And what they would do is they would then say we’re gonna get you a whole new wardrobe. And what did they do with the old stuff. They threw it away. They brought the garbage cans in and said this is gone. Because they knew something. The temptation is to run back to the familiar to the comfortable. Because the first chance they got I don’t like this AMI, I’m gonna go back to what I know. That is our temptation. If we don’t kill it, it will always be there, saying I’m comfortable. You’re used to me. It’s familiar. It feels good. We need to kill it. John Owen said in the killing center, we’ll be killing you. So we are called to then put on the new self. We have new clothes on we realized something very interesting. When we put these new clothes on, we realized we’re not the only ones wearing these new clothes. There is a community that’s wearing the same stuff as us. Other Christians get the same exact thing we do. We get the riches of Christ, we get the wardrobe of Christ. Look at verse 11. Paul is showing that the gospel, the good news of Jesus Christ has broken down the barriers of class and status. There’s contrasting comparisons here between different groups and Paul says it doesn’t matter who they are. Christ is all and is in all. Remember, this is a letter. Paul has been writing this letter to the church in class, he has been building these arguments he’s trying to get to the more practical and how theology actually informs every decision we make everything we do. So earlier in the book of Colossians, and chapter one, verse 17, we saw that Christ is all that he is supreme over everything, over creation over the church over our lives, he is supreme. So Christ is all we’ve already seen that. And then chapter one, verse 27, Christ in you the hope of glory, Christ indwells believers. So what does this mean? It means that Christ is all he is supreme. And Christ is in all everybody who calls on him. He indwells. So the question is, is Christ all to you? Is Christ in you? Think about it today. This list here doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to us. We get bits and pieces of it. We know these are different groups. But think about it today. Democrat or Republican, male or female, employer or employee rich or poor, Cubs fan or Sox fan, and more appropriate for today, Eagles fan or chiefs fan. Now, none of that matters at all. Right, none of that matters at all, if Christ is all. And as in all these superficial in our differences between all of us are not what define us. What defines us as if we say Christ is all and he is in me. That’s what matters. When we’ve all died, like, look around the room to other believers, we’ve all died. It’s not just you, we’ve all died, we’ve all been raised to new life. And so we all get Christ’s life, we all get Christ close. So this is why we are closer to a brother or sister in Christ living in the slums of Haiti, a penthouse in New York City, or in a small church around the world that’s hiding right now from government persecution, because of their faith, then we are to the middle class family across the street, that looks just like us, that does the same things we do, if they don’t say Christ is all in in all. That’s the big difference. That’s the big difference. And thankfully, Christ has demolished those barriers and that wall so that all of us can say Christ is all and in all. So taking things off is one thing. I don’t know about you, but my life a lot of times I look at these lists, and I skipped the next part. I said, Alright, I’m not supposed to do these things. So I’m gonna try not to do these things. I ignore the rest of the list, because there’s something we’re supposed to put on. Right? So we put to death to things of our old self, and we live free by clothing ourselves in the new life. Look at verses 12 through 17. Therefore as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loves, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bear with each other and forgive one another. If any of you has a grievance against someone, forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts since as members of one body, you recall to peace, and be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among your rich leads, you teach and admonish one another, with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father, through him. So let that first part sink in. You are chosen by God, holy and dearly loved. There is no greater joy than knowing God says you are his. no greater joy. So why wouldn’t we want to walk in that truth following after the God who loves us and saves us?
This week, I was taking a shower and Jackie wasn’t feeling well. She was laying up in our room. And I got out the shower and I looked out the door and I saw my oldest two. And it dawned on me that I didn’t have any clothes. And I’m like, in Jackie’s not feeling well. So I really didn’t want to disrupt her. I just looked down and I just thought, Boy, oh boy, I don’t have any clothes. Parker looks at me. And I just worked out. So I took a shower, because I want you to put on your workout clothes. i You want me to do that. If you’ve ever worked out and you’ve taken your clothes off, and you’ve tried to put them back on, how do they go on? It sticks to you. All this stuff you just washed off you put back on you again. And so I looked at him I just said I can’t do that. So I got to figure out something else. Because it’s gross. We don’t want that. That’s not why we just got clean. And so here we’re thinking, Okay, I want to put on these new clothes. So it would never make sense for me to go back and put on that old If we shouldn’t do it, we should want to do it, we should want the new, the clean the fresh. And that’s what I wanted in that moment. I think that’s what we all want. So like the list of vices we saw, we have this list of five virtues, again, not exhausted, exhaustive. Sometimes we see these, and we read them in our, in our mind, and we read these lists and like, Oh, I gotta be better at this, I gotta be better at that. How can I be better at these things, but I want us to take a more Pauline approach to how we read this list. So let’s look at this from the perspective of our union with Christ. Because if we are hidden with Christ, and these virtues are true of Jesus, which they are, then we can walk in them as well as we follow closely after him. So it’s not I need to do these things. It’s I need to follow Jesus who does these things and he will change me, he will help me do these things. So these virtues are saying live like Jesus, be Christ like in what you think, say and do. So what do we need to clothe ourselves with? I’ve got the ABCs here should be pretty easy to remember, we clothe ourselves with Jesus’s attitude, with Jesus’s behavior and with Jesus’s community. Okay, attitude, behavior, community. First Jesus’s attitude. We want to set our minds on things above. No one in the world ever did this more than Jesus. He set his mind on things above. So first, compassion. This is a deep care for others that moves us. It moves us, the needs of others moves us, like when Jesus saw the crowds, and Matthew 90 said, it says he had compassion on them. Why? Because they were harassed and helpless, like a sheep, like sheep without a shepherd. That’s the kind of compassion that Jesus can bring to our hearts in our life, kindness, considering others, that leads to us doing acts of good for them, especially those who don’t deserve it. Like it says in Titus three, but when the kindness and love of God our Savior peered He saved us. We didn’t deserve it. But his kindness and love led him to save us. So we get to live in that kindness as well. Humility, Jesus displayed this night before he was killed when he knelt down and washed the feet of all of his disciples in a position of servanthood. So this is our example. This is who we follow. gentleness and Matthew 11, which Merritt actually prayed through a little bit of this morning, we read the only time that Jesus really describes his own character. And he says, I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy. My burden is light. This is who we follow. If we want to be gentle, we follow Jesus and He will help us be gentle. And then patients. Paul elsewhere writes about Jesus’s patients as he’s talking about his own life in First Timothy, when he says, but for that very reason, I was showing mercy so that in me the worst of sinners, Christ, Jesus might display his immense patience. His immense patience example, for those who believe in Him and receive eternal life. Jesus is patient, we follow Him, He will help us to be patient, and finally love, we are to put on love which binds all of these together, we can only love according to First John, because God first loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. So we think about these things, these are the things about this is what Jesus thought about. This is who Jesus thought about. It’s an attitude switch, which leads to new actions. So we have a new attitude. Next, it’s Jesus’s behaviors, what do we see is true here is that we bear with each other and forgive one another. So we approach our relationships differently. We are seeking the things above rather than the earthly thing. So let’s contrast those for a minute. Rather than trying to be right all the time, we bear with others. Instead of holding a grudge against someone, we forgive that person. You see the difference being the earthly, and the things above. We know what we want to do on this earth and our earthly nature and our sinful nature. And we’re called to do something different. And the only thing that can help us do that is the fact that Jesus did all of that for us. In our place, we read that we forgive because we forgive as the Lord forgave us. And that’s a pretty high standard. Jesus forgave us of all of our sin, every act of rebellion against a holy God. Heavenly forgiveness. And we have a difficult time forgiving those on a horizontal plane. Brothers and sisters who maybe we have a grievance against, but we need to forgive them because then we’re showing we understood that Christ first forgave us. And finally, Jesus’s community. Verse loving Christ is all in his in all this community overflows with thankfulness. Now, Mara took us through these three verses back at our Thanksgiving Eve service or I’m not going to go in depth into them here. But I would encourage you go back and listen that message if you want to kind of go through each one of these more in depth. But what do we see here, we see that the people of God, those who say Christ is all in his in all should be people of thanksgiving. So we’re thankful. First, as you see in verse 15, for the peace of Christ, the peace of Christ that we experienced with God and with others, verse 16, we’re thankful for the message of Christ, the gospel message, the good news that saves us, and that impacts our worship, it impacts everything that we do. In this service. As we get in God’s word. It impacts what we do is we saturate the songs are saturated with the Word of God, and kids, city and city, Lincoln cities, to our community groups, Journey groups, the word is saturating them. And it should drive us to Thanksgiving because of this message. And then we have Thanksgiving for all of life. We see all of life as an opportunity to live for Jesus Christ, and whatever we say, or do. So when we put all of this together, we are putting on the new life we have in Christ, Out with the old and in with the new, so on to finish our time this morning by talking to a few different groups of people, the first of your here, and you know, you are not hidden with Christ. You know, that is not true of you that you look at these vices, and you see these true of your life and you’d like to get rid of them. You just don’t know how things feel hopeless. And what we’re saying is you can live free, you can by coming to faith in Jesus and saying, he took it all. So that you can say, I died, I was raised, I’m with Christ, and I will return with Him in glory. That can be true of you today, he can change he does transform lives. For all the you who called on the name of Jesus, you are a Christian, you know that. But you are struggling to take stuff off. You are struggling to get rid of that old self, it is overwhelming to look into our closet of life and think, Where do I start? Where do I go? How do I put these things aside? So I just want to encourage you today, pick one thing, pick one, don’t look at the closet, because there’s a lot there. Pick one thing today or this week that you will attack and kill in your life, not on your own. With the help of Jesus with the help of community, go after it, attack it and kill it. And then you say what else is there. But don’t get overwhelmed by the amount of stuff, we start with one thing. The other thing is considers maybe you’re too focused on the sin and not enough on the new wardrobe you have in Christ. The thing that will drive out sin more than anything else is realizing what we have in Jesus. So focus instead on that second list, and say this is who I want to be. And if I focus on these things, it would be a lot easier to peel the other things off, and to get rid of them. So focus first on what you have in Christ, who you are in Christ. And that will help you kill the sin. And then as a church.
Do you see what was true of us and our earthly nature? And what is true of us now? Do you see what should characterize us as a church family, we need to do this together. It is a community project. So think about kids, when you see a kid first start to take off their shirt, and then they get stuck at the neck. Have you ever seen this, and the whole shirt is over their head. It’s just like it’s just caught here. You laugh at first. But then you want to help them. Because it’s really frustrating when you can’t get a shirt off. And that’s what the church is for one another. When you can’t take something off, somebody else has to come in and help you remove it. It is not meant to be done alone is meant to be done in community, which means we have to identify the sin and be willing to talk about it. Be willing to say it in community groups and journey groups. And with those who we trust. We need to help one another out because it is frustrating. So we step out and step up and encourage one another anybody struggling in the body of Christ. And then do you see others struggling putting clothes on? It’s hard to live the Christian life? It is. So help them button up their shirt. Alright, so what do you want? Where do you want change? How can I help? How can I encourage you? What can I send you? Can I call you whatever it might look like but help them finish? Help them put that stuff on. This passage here is to a church not individual people. So we need to see this. This is a community project. We need to challenge one another. We need to help one another. And then one thing to end today. We need to remember that to live free in our reality of being with Christ. There’s something that I skipped over in verse 10. says this I have put on the new self, which is being renewed in the knowledge and the image of its Creator, being renewed, I want you to take great encouragement from this today. What this means is we are being renewed currently, and always will, until glory. So living free is a continuous process. When you walk out the doors, you’re in Christ, you are with Christ. But guess what life is still hard. There’s still things that take off of living in the reality that we have in Christ, it is difficult. And it’s a process that God is going to be with us and changing us. As we continue to set our minds on things above. And we set our minds and things about we get to know our God, more and more the image of our Creator. God’s desire for us is to look like Jesus. And so he saves us and then changes us to look like Jesus. So what does this mean, as you grow in your relationship with Jesus, your attitudes change, your behaviors change, and you see the community and the importance of community, and you’ll see more and more of your sin. But here’s the greatest news. I’m going to try and try and illustrate this. So you can see it. As we grow in our faith, our understanding of God’s holiness increases, we get to know our Creator more and more, we get to know our Savior more and more. And as that happens, we start to see the devastation of our sin. And that grows to Paul says he continues to write his letters, he says, I was a sinner, and then all of a sudden, I’m the worst of sinners as he gets to the end of his life, not because he was sending more, but because he understood the depths of his sin, and his brokenness. And so as that goes up, and as this goes on, the crosses in the middle here, and the cross gets larger, the Gospel becomes bigger. Because we understand God’s holiness, we understand our sin. And we see more clearly what Christ actually did on the cross. And that’s what we are continuing to do as we are renewed day by day. So when we put these things into practice, we will see God’s holiness, we will see our sin, and we will be more thankful for our Savior. And what he has done. There is stuff stuffed back in your closet that you can’t even think about right now. It’s okay. You’ll get to it. You’ll get to it. But start today with that one thing, because there’s other stuff to deal with first. And if that’s hard for you look back and where you’ve come already. We all have a testimony of God’s grace in your life. What has he already done, that will help you tomorrow? Today to deal with that sin. I’ll say in ministry besides conversion when a person comes from death to life and darkness, to light from blindness to sight, the greatest thing besides that is seeing someone live this out and see sin killed, and seeing them put on Jesus Christ. seeking the things above. Putting off the old and clothing ourselves in the new Let me close with these words from John Stott. The essence of our Christian identity is that we are with Christ at each stage of His saving career. know truth has greater power to transform us. When we grasp it. The radical discontinuity between the past and the present is glaringly evident. We can either fall back, nor standstill, we must go forward with Christ. Let’s pray. Lord, we praise you this morning. That for those of us who have called you lord and savior, we know that we are with you. That in our past, we have died, we had been raised to new life, we get to live that new life now that we are seated with you in the heavenly realms, and that we will not be hidden one day as you return is when we appear in glory with you. That is our hope. That is our desire. And we look forward to that day the Lord right now we want to live out the truth. We want to live out those truths now today and leave this place confident of who we are in you and ready to pursue you to seek you out to put off the old self into put on the new and we do this Lord because we are thankful for your salvation. We are thankful for who you are, and we want to worship you with our lives. Jesus we love you We pray this in Your name, amen.