Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Put Off and Put On

The Development of Christian Character
Colossians 3:8-24
No one is automatically a Christian. You become a Christian by a conscious choice (Acts 26:28). Likewise, Christian character must be devel­oped after one is saved. It doesn’t happen auto­matically (see 2 Pet. 1:5-7).

I. PUT OFF (Col 3:8-9) 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;
What the believer must do himself.
A. Anger—
1. Sinful anger—Selfish. Anger is sinful in the following circumstances:
· When it is excited without legitimate and righteous cause (cf. Mt. 5:22).
· When it broods and lingers.
· When it is against the person rather than the offence.
· When it is harbored by an unforgiving spirit.
2. Righteous anger—Unselfish. Whatever causes God to be angry, is permissible.
B. Wrath— Anger that boils over—Fits of temper.
C. Malice— Hostility / vindictive spirit. Anger accompanied with a desire of revenge and to inflict pain or injury (Rom. 12:17-19).
D. Blasphemy—Sacrilegious (abuse of sacred things); using God’s name in vain; cursing; profane and irreverent speech; Heretical doctrines (cf. 1 Tim. 1:20).
F. Filthy communication—Impurity; dirty, nasty, obscene, lewdness. “If it is doubtful it is dirty.”
G. Lying—Deception (cf. Eph. 4:25). Lying destroys trust.
H. The old man— Why would these deeds be evident in a believer’s life?
1. There are only TWO MEN in God’s reck­oning (1 Cor. 15:47).
2. The old man is what we were in Adam—What we were before we were saved or in Christ. It is our old adamic nature.
3. Can never be “put off” completely.
4. The old man is put off by refusing to honor his requests (Rom. 6:6-14).
II. PUT ON (Col 3:10-14) 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.
A. The new man (vs. 10-11)—The Lord Jesus Christ (cf. 1 Cor. 15:47).
With the NEW birth comes the NEW man making you a NEW creature, with NEW deeds.
Become what you really are. Develop the Christ-like characteristics.
B. Bowels of mercy (v. 12)—Compassion; tender-hearted; Pity; Not treating people as they may deserve.
C. Kindness—Courteous; polite; benevolent; Not mean-spirited— A desire to make others happy.
D. Humility—Not proud (Phil. 2:3-8).
E. Meekness—Yielding rights.
Not weakness, but selfless. MOSES (Num. 12:3)
· Passive in defending self, but strong to defend God and His Word;
· Indifferent to promote self, but resolute to promote God and His Word;
· Casual about fulfilling our own will, but zealous about doing the God’s will.
F. Longsuffering—Patience
G. Forbearance—Tolerance; No retaliation.
H. Forgiveness—(Eph. 4:31-32). Canceling the debt.
I. Charity—(1 Cor. 13).
ILLUS: I could hold up a picture of a group of neatly dressed, well-groomed, smiling people in one hand. In the other hand a picture of people who were scruffy, slov­enly dressed, dirty, with callous expres­sions. These two pictures illustrate the im­age of what we must put on and put off.


Don Porter, M.Ed said...

"When it is against the person rather than the offence. When it is harbored by an unforgiving spirit."

I have found that these 2 'sinful angers' are very prevalent. This is true in the church and the work place. Basic teaching when discipline, reproof, correction is necessary is to focus on the behavior not the person. Frankly, it takes a lot of work and training to be good at this. However, it is of grave importance if success in stressful situations is to be achieved.