To put off the old man with his deeds and to put on the new man is truly as simple as taking off your overcoat and putting on another.
Colossians 3:9-11 “9 Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.”
Lies can only come from our flesh, the “old man”, since the born-again believer has the new (pure) Spirit of Christ. Our new man, according to Ephesians 4:24 was created by God in righteousness and true holiness. Notice how Paul identified “lie” separate from the sins listed in verse 5 and verse 8. It is not that a lie is the worse since all because sin is sin, but the Devil is the father of lies and the lie is what stumbled Eve in the first place. As Christians we should not lie to anyone and if lying was a part of your old man, there may be a natural propensity to fall back into lying. Paul specifically added “to one another” in verse 9 because of the position in Christ every believer is in. There should be sweet trusts between believers especially since all have the same Spirit of Jesus; however, we all have come from different walks of life and levels of depth of living in our sin nature prior to becoming born again. For some this may be more difficult, but is considered the part of the “old man” that we need to put off. Even though the old man is gone and the new man is present, there is still “the coat” of the old man hanging around, sometimes on us, sometimes in the closet, which is our attitudes and actions.
We have put on the new man and in 1 Corinthians 2:16 we are told that we have the mind of Christ. In 1 John 2:20 we are told that we have instruction from the Holy Spirit. The hinge pin that keeps us from walking perfectly in this new man is identified in Romans 2:12 where we are told to renew our minds. Romans 8:7 tell us the “natural” mind is enmity to God and in Romans 7:8 Paul states that there is nothing good in his flesh which we can say for ourselves. So here we are back to square one; there is not much visible difference between a newly born again believer and an unsaved person. Both can have the same outward actions and attitudes. The difference is the believer is forgiven for their sins and has the power to change their life providing they make an effort to learn how and what to change. The non- believer, even though they may be able to change their outward man, can never come into the presence of God and their change at best is only temporal. I do not like the bumper sticker “Christians are not perfect, just forgiven” for the typical reason it is used; as a “get out of jail card” for lifestyles and actions that should have been dealt with spiritually. There is great truth, however, to that bumper sticker. Christians can never live a perfect life free from sin or offence, but because of faith in Jesus and the blood He shed for our sins we are forgiven and called “Child of God”. This freedom does not give us a license to sin, but should give us the heart’s desire and power to make good effort to change our mind to line up with the word of God. By grace you have been saved, Ephesians 2:8, don’t neglect such a perfect gift; grow in it.
Verse 11 ties in with verse 9 & 10 because it is the “glue” for how we can change our minds, how we should see other Christians, and how we should show love to every believer first and then to the lost. Every believer is part of the body of Christ. He is in all of us, so why do we take Him into places we shouldn’t go or do things we shouldn’t do. How can we say harsh things about and to each other unless we do not realize we are actually saying and doing it to Jesus? In Paul’s day and before, according to Jewish law the non-Jew was considered a “dog” and unworthy of any respect. Today everyone in
Christ is the same child of God. We are all “new creations” purposing to change from one old coat to the new one.
Remember this in your “born again” walk about yourself and a fellow brother in Christ. Everything about a believer is spiritually perfect on the inside, but we all have to learn how to take off the old coat “the old attitudes and actions” and put on our new clothes “righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17).
Copyright The Power of Grace Ministries. All rights reserved.
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California,
Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New Your, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming