Colossians 3:12-13 ESV
“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 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.”
These instructions are for Christians, for those who have died with Christ to sin, and who have been raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, no longer according to the flesh, but now according to the Spirit (Colossians 3:1-4; Romans 6:1-23; Romans 8:1-14; Ephesians 4:17-24; Titus 2:11-14).
So, after Paul told the Christians all the things they must put off (put to death), such things as sexual immorality, impurity, evil desire, idolatry, malice, slander, and lying, etc. (Colossians 3:5-11), then he told them the things they must put on in place of the things that they must put off. And this is where today’s passage of Scripture begins.
So, this list is the opposite of the previous list. So, instead of sinning against God and against other humans via such things as sexual immorality, adultery, lust, malice, lying, unfaithfulness, and slander, now we are to be compassionate, kind, humble, meek and patient. And we are to forgive those who we believe have sinned against us. But forgiveness is not permission to keep sinning, but it says, “Go and sin no more.”
Colossians 3:14-15 ESV
“And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.”
Now, this “love” being spoken of here is not human love which is based in our emotions and/or in the one we are loving, but this love centers in moral preference and it is based in the one who is love, who is God Almighty. And it means to prefer what God prefers, which is what is holy, righteous, godly, upright, morally pure, honest, faithful, and the like.
So, this is why we must put on this love above all else because we cannot forsake our sins and be kind and compassionate to others unless we are putting on the love of God, and unless we are walking in that love. For human love comes and goes, just like our feelings do, and human love can be fickle and based in our feelings while the love that comes from God is steadfast and pure and it does what is right despite how we feel.
And what is the peace of Christ? It is not absence of conflict with others, because if we are truly following Jesus with our lives, we are going to be opposed by others who disagree with us. And Jesus faced that a bunch! But it is an inner peace that exists within us despite all that is going on all around us. It is the peace in knowing that we are in the center of God’s will, doing what he has called us to do, despite our surroundings.
So, if we are letting this peace rule in our hearts, then we are not going to let our circumstances unsettle us or take us out. We will not be those who are tossed back and forth by every wind of doctrine coming from the mouths of those who are conniving, cunning, and crafty in their deceitful schemes. And we will not be ruled by our emotions. But we will do what is right and godly and morally pure despite our surroundings.
Colossians 3:16-17 ESV
“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. 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.”
I believe this is something which is not practiced much at all in the church in America. Instead we hear such things as, “Stay in your own lane,” and “Don’t try to tell people the gospel unless you have befriended them for at least two years.” And now we are being told that we just need to go around blessing people and being nice and that we are not to be negative or say anything which might sound judgmental or that might offend someone.
And then we are being trained that the preacher/pastor is to do all the preaching/pastoring, and that we are all to be taught by him. And so there is not much of the body life going on in many places called “church” here in America, because it doesn’t fit in with their marketing schemes for how to grow their churches (mostly businesses), and for how to draw in large crowds of people from the world into their gatherings.
But the Lord designed the body of Christ (his church) to where we each have a part in the building up of the body of Christ to maturity in Christ, and in exhorting one another so that we are not hardened by sin’s deceitfulness, and so that we speak the truth in love, one to the other, so that we are not led astray by deceitful workmen whose job it is to lead people astray.
So all of us Christians, whose faith is genuine, and who are walking in obedience to our Lord, and not in sin, are to be letting the word of Christ dwell in us richly so that we are living it, and so that we are teaching and admonishing one another in our walks of faith in Jesus Christ. And we teach each other by singing spiritual songs to one another, too. And this is about us singing to each other songs with biblical messages to encourage one another in our walks of faith. And I believe this is why the Lord Jesus includes a song in every one of these devotions he has me write.
[Matt 5:13-16; Matt 28:18-20; Jn 4:31-38; Jn 13:13-17; Jn 14:12; Acts 1:8; Acts 26:18; Rom 10:14-15; Rom 12:1-8; Rom 15:14; 1 Co 12:1-31; Eph 4:1-16; Eph 5:17-27; Php 2:1-8; Col 3:16; Heb 3:13; Heb 10:23-25; 1 Pet 2:9,21; 1 Jn 2:6]
And whatever we do, in word or deed, should all be done to the glory and praise of God, and in the name of Jesus, and for the spiritual benefit of all who are reading, listening, or watching (observing), giving thanks to God the Father through Jesus Christ. But this doesn’t make us perfect people, for not one of us will be absolutely perfect in these flesh bodies. But we should strive toward perfection in Christ by following our Lord in obedience and in surrender to his will and in walks of holiness and righteousness.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
An Original Work / April 15, 2012
Walking daily with my Savior
brings me joy.
Loving Father; precious Jesus;
He’s my Savior and my Lord.
Gently leads me; follow Him.
I’ve invited Him within.
Now abiding in His presence,
oh, what peace.
From my self-life
He has brought me,
By His mercy, full release.
Hope and comfort,
peace and safety Jesus brings
When I daily bow before Him;
Obey freely; do His will.
Follow Him where’er He leads.
Listen to Him; His words heed.
Now obeying his words fully,
oh, what love
That He gives me
By His Spirit, from above.
Loving Father; precious Jesus,
He’s my friend.
With my Savior, by His Spirit,
I will endure to the end.
Share the gospel, tell what’s true.
Witness daily; His will do.
Tell the world of how their Savior
bled and died.
On a cruel cross He suffered
So that we might be alive.