Updated: Jul 24
Sermon Notes from Sunday, July 24, 2023
In Colossians 3:5-17 Paul talks about the clothes believers wear in church. Not dresses and suit coats, but the clothes provided by Christ.
Several passages refer to the behavior expected of godly people as putting on new clothes: Gal. 3:26-28, Eph. 4:20-25, Job 29:14, Isa. 61:10.
On Thursdays I start my day with a four mile walk, then attack my lawn with the trimmer and mower. By the end of that I am a stinky, dirty mess. My clothes go right into the washing machine rather than the laundry hamper because they are just too stinky. Then comes a shower and fresh clean clothes. Now people will not be offended to stand next to me.
Our lives in Jesus are like this. We come to Him a stinky, dirty mess and He takes away our dirty clothes and gives us a shower to wash away our sins. Then he offers us new clothes to wear. What if, after taking my shower I had gone back to the washing machine and put back on my dirty clothes. It makes my skin crawl to think of it
Yet, that is what we do after Jesus cleanses us, if we put back on the behaviors described at the beginning of this passage. Instead, Jesus invites us to put on better clothes.
He have this privilege Paul says because we are:
Chosen- God pursued us and chose us, not the other way around
Holy- This means not only moral obligation, but “set aside” for God’s purpose
Beloved- It is true that we are God’s foot soldiers, but we are also his beloved children
These new clothes are like the peasant who has been elevated to the nobility. It is no longer appropriate to wear old stinky rags, now we wear fine robes.
Paul says to put on:
Compassion- willing to “suffer with” our brothers and sisters
Kindness- the root of this word is “smoothness” to have the type of behavior which soothes rather than irritates
Humility- like a leveled mountain, not lording over others to be noticed
Meekness- strength focused on gentleness
Patience- willing to wait on others to catch up
Added to this he adds forgiveness. In fact, he says forgive, because Christ forgave us, and allows us to forgive, three times in one sentence he says forgive.
Really forgiveness is the true test of love. They are practically inseparable. Notice he does not say forgive after they apologize. “If someone offends you, forgive.”
Then he wraps all these virtues in Love. Love encompasses all virtues like white light encompasses all color. Shine white light through a prism and you get all of the colors of the spectrum. Put Love to work and you get all of the virtues.
Paul says these instructions apply equally to all believers regardless of education, ethnicity, or social status.
When we come to church, Jesus expects us to be wearing our church clothes so that we are not offensive to one another, not wearing the stinky old clothes we had before He cl
eaned us up.