“9For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is head over every power and authority. 11In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, 12having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.” Colossians 2:9-12 NIV
First the good news (above)! It really is good news. Everything about that passage is good news, and we have studied it in this series. We just needed to refresh ourselves in its truth before proceeding with today’s passage.
“5Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. Colossians 3:5-11 NIV
The Lord is very serious with us here. He has done the impossible part – he took off our flesh nature and has given us His – now our part is to put to death all the characteristics of that old self-person and receive the new self – the image being renewed continually in the image of our Father, Lord Jesus, and precious Holy Spirit. If we read Galatians 5:19-21 we will find a similar list when describing the “acts of the flesh.”
When the Lord does such marvelous giftings (as Himself in all fullness), there is always the expectation, empowerment, and instruction to join Him in that action by getting rid of all the traces of the expressions of that earth life. He does not do for us what He has told us to do. We can pray all day asking Him to take care of these, but He has instructed us to take care of them. We are not helpless, but empowered and free to choose. He teaches us how to choose.
These passages are freedom ones, urging us to take action in Him and in His designated power in us to change what only we can change.
So, let’s let freedom in His fullness Ring! Let us take advantage of everything His person is and not hold back when it gets tough on our flesh. Our flesh has been made holy in Him! That is what Colossians is saying! So, let’s cooperate in His fullness and allow these characteristics to die so the fruit of the Spirit can be expressed fully through us.
Lord, we have said yes, and we say yes again!