“When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 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.” Colossians 3:4-7
When we receive God’s indescribable gift of forgiveness through Christ’s shed blood, our old self is supposed to die. Those things that we once may have done we are no longer to do. We are dead to sin and alive to God. We are to look to Christ to receive guidance for our conduct. The Holy Spirit within us is the conduit God uses to lead and guide us in this life, but we must listen for Him. We must know His voice. Too often we act or react to what we assume is God’s leading, when in fact it is only what we have wanted to do all along. We need to spend time with the Lord to know Him. We must become familiar with the scriptures to know His character traits and His promises to us. The only way we can put off our old self and keep it from raising its ugly head again is to stay keenly focused on Christ. Satan will trip us up if he can. Scripture teaches us not to give him a foothold1 (Ephesians 4:26-27). Allowing a foothold can create a situation that can invite in those sinful practices we have turned away from.
Today many people who say they believe in God refuse to accept that He is a God of wrath. They see Him as loving, kind, compassionate, merciful, forgiving and so on and He is all that and more. However, scripture is clear that He IS a God of wrath and He is coming to display that wrath upon those who disobey His word. Those who pick and choose what to believe, clinging only to those verses that expand their comfort zone are treading on very thin ice.
Christ died so that we could live, but God doesn’t exist to satisfy our every whim. We are to live a life that is pleasing to our Lord; for it is only then that we will find true peace and fulfillment. We must take off our old self like a filthy old garment and put on our new self. A 180-degree change in attitude and behavior must take place. Christ died for us. He paid a debt we could never pay on our own. We must surrender our will over to Almighty God. Until next time, walk with the King and be a blessing!
Resources: American Heritage Dictionary; Reformation Study Bible and Asbury Bible Commentary.
1 A firm or secure position that provides a base for further advancement.