Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
My friend, Kurt Kilpatrick, is a member of the National Speaker’s Association. He once told me of a group within his profession who were Dress for Success advocates. Obviously, they were easy to spot at any meeting. Perfectly coiffed and immaculately dressed. Suitable for display in any upscale department store window.
Now, when you dress for success, you’re not doing it solely for the benefit of others. You feel better about yourself, more confident. If you want to be a winner, dress like a winner.
Paul’s instruction in Colossians 3 follows that same logic, albeit figuratively. Get rid of the old sinful wardrobe and replace it with attire befitting a Christian.
In the verses leading up to our focus text, Paul lists the articles of clothing that should have already been discarded: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed. (Colossians 3:5) In verse 8, he added sinful behavior that still needed to be addressed: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language and lying (v9).
What behavioral changes have you made since coming to Christ? And what needs to be corrected now? Take inventory of your spiritual closet and cast off everything that doesn’t belong, the sin that so easily entangles (Hebrews 12:1). Sin hinders your walk with God, prevents you from the abundant life Christ has promised.
I have often heard people complain that Christians have too many rules. Too many “thou-shalt-nots.” As a veteran of many diets, I have learned that it is better to focus on what you can have as opposed to what you can’t. That’s what Paul encourages us to do as he opens our eyes to the big picture. “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved…” (Colossians 3:12)
You aren’t that old lost sinner anymore. You are no longer destined for the wrath of God (v6). God CHOSE you and through the work of Christ you have been made holy, and you are dearly loved.
When I was 11-years-old, I tried out for the Pure Peppers Little League team and made it. I was chosen by the best team in the league. And I couldn’t wait to wear my new uniform.
Better than that, we have been chosen for God’s eternal team. There’s no greater honor. We should wear the uniform proudly.
12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3:12-14
This clothing is all that should be hanging in your closet. Throw out the old rags and devote your life to the qualities worthy of team Jesus.
Put on the uniform that brings success and places you in the best position for serving Christ.
For more on this topic, check out this article: Show Yourself to Be a Child of God
Reprinted from The Forever Notebook, Book 3 (July – September) Get your copy here: Paperback and eBook/Kindle formats.