Life in the Spirit, Life Against the Flesh (Pt. 4)
October 21, 2018
How can one become good? Only by God’s transforming work — which is what Colossians 3 has said —
- 3:1 — “you have been raised up” (i.e., God raised you)
- 3:3 — “your life is hidden with Christ”
- 3:4 — “Christ is our life”
- 3:4 — “you also will be revealed with Him in glory” (i.e., He will reveal you; Rom. 8:30)
- 3:10 — “you have put on the new self who is being renewed…” (i.e., Christ is renewing you)
- 3:11 — “Christ is all” (i.e., Christ is all sufficient for your salvation & transformation)
- 3:12 — “those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved [of God]…”
- So (v. 12) — It is only on the basis of this that it is said, “Put on [righteousness]…”
So we are in Christ and with Christ, but we still have the flesh and we still sin. How will we get out of the trap of sin? Paul says to kill sin, mortify it, in Romans 8:12-13, and in Colossians 3:1-17 he tells us how to mortify sin. We’ve said the theme of Romans 8 and this passage is —
To live in the Spirit is to live aggressively against the flesh.
But how will we kill sin? What will that look like? In chapter two Paul identified several approaches to dealing with sin that do not work:
- Worldly philosophy (2:8ff)
- Legalism (2:16) — self-righteousness
- Asceticism (2:18) — sheer will-power
- Mysticism (2:18b) — the “magic pill” of transformation
- These (and more) are man-made attempts, do not please God, and are of no value against the flesh.
In Colossians 3, Paul gives us a more detailed answer to that question, and it’s that passage that we want to finish examining this morning. In this passage we find five ingredients of a life that mortifies the flesh:
- Cultivate a New Desire (v. 1)
- Think a New Way (vv. 2-4)
- Put Off Your Old Sin (vv. 5-9)
- Put On Your New Righteousness (vv. 10-14)
- Remember your new identity (v. 10)
- Appropriate your new power (v. 11)
- Replace your sinful deeds with righteous deeds (vv. 12-14)
- Live by the Spirit of Christ’s Power (vv. 15-17)
- Let Christ’s peace control you (v. 15)
- Let Christ’s Word control you (v. 16)
- Let Christ’s glory control you (v. 17)
Download the rest of this sermon on Colossians 3:10-17.
The audio will be posted on the GBC website by tomorrow.