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Worship Devotion for 5-31-2017

posted May 31, 2017, 9:08 AM by Jeff Mashaw   [ updated May 31, 2017, 9:15 AM ]

Colossians 3:1-17

Put On the New Self
3 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 
5 Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 On account of these the wrath of God is coming. 7 In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. 8 But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. 11 Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all. 
12 Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

In last week's devotion, we looked at this passage from Colossians. Here Paul is encouraging his hearers to set their minds on Christ and put on the new self. We discussed last week that this passage contains all of our worship ministry values. This is an application of the passage, but is not its primary purpose. Paul's intent was to ensure that the Colossian believers were mature in their faith. He wanted them to be aware of the false teachers, and legalism in their midst. He did not want to just set out a list of rules for them to follow. In fact, that was what he was trying to fight against. In the previous chapter, (Col. 2:20-22) Paul wants to know why the Colossians are submitting themselves to human regulations instead of the substance found in Christ.

He shares the gospel with the Colossians and pleads with them to be made "Mature in Christ." He wants them to reach the full assurance of understanding. This means that he wants them to be solidified in their faith. He wanted them to be motivated by love for God and others. He wanted them to live out their faith in Christ. He wanted to see them continue his mission of sharing the gospel and expanding God's kingdom. And he wanted to make sure this was built upon the truth of God's Word and not just upon human teachings or concepts. 

Essentially, the passage above is a summary of what it means to be a Christian. The basis for this is found in the gospel, which Paul shares in chapter 2. Then having understood the gospel, or the inner change that the gospel brings, we are to live out chapter 3. The why, is what Jesus did on the cross. After that has begun its work inside, we are then to let our minds be changed. Then we are to fight sin. Then we seek unity with other believers. Then we grow in the fruits of the spirit and finally, we preach and teach others. Fully mature believers are always sharing their faith and teaching others about Jesus. This was Paul's desire. This is the desire of our church as well.

This is the heart of our worship ministry: to help people grow into mature believers. The whole person must be changed; the heart, the mind, the soul and the actions.