40 day bible challenge
Day 18 | Colossians 3:5-11
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 the 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 have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
My first thought from reading this passage was how crazy it is that the people of Colosse, who lived around 60 A.D (literally ages ago), are a lot like us. They’re struggling with temptations that we too face today.
This passage will speak to everyone in different ways, and there’s so much to take from it, but here are just three things that stood out to me.
What was before
At the beginning of this passage Paul writes for us to V5 “put to death” our nature. Whatever we have done in the past, we can move forward, we have been forgiven and can start afresh with Christ.
This is so reassuring. No matter our past, our flaws and our struggles, Jesus still loves and died for each and every one of us. This something I’ve heard time over but let that really sink in: if it were only you on this earth, Jesus still would have sacrificed himself in your place.
“Whatever we have done in the past we can move forward, we have been forgiven and can start afresh with Christ”
So we should “put to death” our old identity, rooted in earthy things and instead place our identity in Christ! We now know better, and so we must act like it, but how do we go about this?
A new start
In versus 9 and 10 Paul starts to give us an action plan. We have a new self, so lets act like it. We now must try to line up our behaviours with our new identity, and live by example.
It doesn’t matter. It literally doesn’t matter what was before. This is a fresh start and we are renewed. This being said change is an on-going process, and it’ll be tough but….
We are not alone
It’s true that we are going to have to work hard at this, and some things are easier to give up than others. But we are not alone; we can call on Jesus and his example in the Bible (for example in Matthew chapter 4). We can pray to God for help and guidance. And we can help each other as Christians and friends.
So lets pray for help, help to show and practice mercy and grace to everyone, as God has shown to us. But lets also give thanks that we are forgiven, that our past is the past and that we can move forward in a new light. We are forgiven and so we should forgive others, as well as ourselves, and not judge or discriminate.
So, starting today, lets help to build each other up and consciously reach out to be there for friends, family and even those who we don’t know.
We’re doing a 40 Day Bible Challenge as a Student Church to engage more with the Bible and the daily podcasts we do here as a church.
To listen to today’s podcast on the same passage as above click here.