For Thursday, October 30, 2014
“Don’t Let Sin Define You!”
Today is October 30, 2014, and you’re listening to The New You, the daily broadcast for people who have been made new by the blood of Christ. Here is today’s Scripture:
But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all (Col. 3:8-11).
When you became a Christian, you took on a whole new identity. I love studying about that new identity and the process by which the change takes place. See, before I was “sinner.” At my very best, that’s all I was. Now, I am “Christian.” I can wear the name of Christ! That’s why Paul says in Colossians 3:11: “Christ is all an in all.” Jesus is now absolutely everything in my life. He is the foundation of the new kind of behavior that I exhibit. It’s no longer about me, and it’s entirely about Him.
Colossians 3:8-11 offers us three important observations regarding that new identity.
First, the old and the new cannot coexist. Notice that Paul is careful to outline how the old is to be put off and the new is then to be put on. This text has mentioned anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language, and lying. Those things are gone, and now “the new man” is here so stay!
Second, your new identity is directly linked with maturity. Colossians 3:10 says that the new man is “renewed in knowledge.” Does this mean that you have to know everything before you become a Christian? Of course not! The oldest Christian around will be the first to admit that he or she doesn’t know everything about the Bible. That’s why Paul uses the present verb tense. Further, this renewal through knowledge is something that we receive from God. In other words, we go to God’s Word and we receive from it the knowledge that we need in order to be renewed. You know what? The more we go to God’s Word, the more renewal we will find there, the more knowledge is there to satisfy our hungry souls (Mat. 5:6; 1 Pet. 2:2; Heb. 5:12-14).
Third, your new identity is directly linked with the model, or the standard. The new man “is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him” (Col. 3:10). That image is the image of Christ! He is the standard; He is our example (1 Pet. 2:21).
Let’s wrap it up: Paul concludes this amazing section of Scripture by acknowledging that, in Christ, “there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all” (Col. 3:11). We are all one in Christ Jesus, we are unified. But we can also view this phrase in this way – now that I’m a Christian, I have lost my own identity for all spiritual purposes. Now that I’m a Christian, I belong to Christ. Sin no longer defines who I am! Now I am defined as forgiven, heaven-bound, a child of God, a Christian.
Recently, I heard someone make this great observation regarding domestic violence. They said that, when we refer to the one who abuses someone else, we shouldn’t call them “the abuser” because that defines them and may imply that there is no escape from that title. I think that’s a fair point. I hope that you will glean this from today’s episode of The New You: sin doesn’t have to define you IF you will put on the new man, grow in knowledge of the Word, and become more like Jesus.
Memory Verse: Joshua 1:9 is this week’s verse. Say it with me:
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go (Joshua 1:9).
The New You 10 Week Challenge for a Better Internet! Let’s work together to make the Internet a better place. Each week, I’ll give you a challenge, and I want to encourage you to take to social media with that challenge, followed by the hashtag #NewYouChallenge.
This week I want us to answer this question: What is your favorite part about sharing the gospel? So head over to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the like and compose a post which says, “My favorite part about sharing the good news of Jesus is _____. #NewYouChallenge” This is week 5 of the 10 week challenge for a better Internet!
Thanks for joining today me on The New You. New episodes of this broadcast are released each weekday, Monday through Friday, from The Light Network. Archives of this program, episode transcripts, and more Christian podcasts are available there, too, at thelightnetwork.tv.
To check out all of our content related to Domestic Violence Awareness Month, go to thelightnetwork.tv/stopviolence.
I welcome your questions, comments, or suggestions for the show! My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org and my voicemail number is 903-26-LIGHT, that’s 903-265-4448. I’d love to hear from you!
This is The New You, I’m Robert Hatfield, and I hope you have a great day!