Thursday, February 6, 2014

Mostly Dead?

Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.  For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. ~ Colossians 3:2–3

As I drive my 63 miles to work each day and then back again my brain is a flood with thoughts.  Yet they always seem to come back to one central resting place, holiness, Christ-likeness.  I didn't come to Jesus, answer His call, just to be saved from hell, although that is a benefit beyond words! Coming to Christ was an earnest cry for deliverance from my heinous and disgusting sins. Over 20 years ago I heard John MacArthur say that wherever I go and whatever I do I have the Lord Jesus Christ right at my side.  At least that is what my thumb sucking infant mind in Christ recalls. With that truth implanted in my pea brain I began a journey of faith always mindful that the last thing I desired to do was drag my Jesus through the filth of my sin.   So hoping not to bore you or be too redundant my intent is to address the call for every Christian and what our gracious Lord has saved us for, conformity to the image of His Son. ~ Romans 8:29

Since my very first steps in Christ I knew without a doubt that my sins were in need of giving up.  Oh what a task, for these were quite comfortable and automatic to me.  But go they must and quickly!  However, they did not go easily nor quickly.  Many a mighty battle did we have and oh how many times they slew me but little by little their stronghold was losing ground.  What was confusing to me at that young age was the throngs who professed faith in this Christ, this Savior whom I had recently embraced and found forgiveness in, yet walked and talked so much like that dead, rotting man that I had just left at the foot of the cross.  How could this be so?

having been set free from sin we have become slaves of righteousness ~ Romans 6:18

Were they really free from sin?  Are you really free from sin?  Are you perhaps in your Christian teens or early 30's and still playing with worldy toys, watching things you ought not to watch and able to give a great discourse on passing fancies?  Do you know more about the stats of your fantasy league players than your Savior's divine election?  Can you name more hit movies than apostles?  Are you more concerned with the political landscape than the edification of your brother?  Have you a reasonable answer for those who ask you?  Or are you still stuck on Jesus Loves Me This I Know?

Indeed we are to set our minds above, we are to be transformed by the renewing of our mind, not conformed to the world. ~ Romans 12:2

Oh the horror of being lazy in my sins and staying bound by their web.  We must cast off the works of darkness for the day is near and the night is far spent. ~ Romans 13:12  We are to pursue holiness without which no one will see the Lord. ~ Hebrews 12:14

It is no suggestion that we gird (our) minds for action, nor to keep sober in spirit.  It is essential that we fix our hope completely on the grace to be brought to (us) at the revelation of Jesus Christ. ~ 1 Peter 1:13      

As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance. ~ 1 Peter 1:14

Notice the past tense? They are former lusts and in our ignorance.  Dare I suggest that if they are present lusts then you are still ignorant and dead in sins.  And the soul that sins must die.  

Brethren, we have been given these exceedingly great and exceeding promises. ~ 2 Peter 1:4  

We were once afar off but now have been brought near by the blood of Christ. ~ Ephesians 2:13 

We who once were enemies but now seated at His table.  Shall we do the very things we were saved from?  Shall we be enthralled by the things of the world that pass away while we miss our very Lord who begs us come out and be separate? (2 Corinthians 6:17)

Are we increasing in our desire for Christ?  Are our sinful habits diminishing? Do we easily choose righteousness?  Or do we quickly fall headlong into sin? Do we even call the very things Christ calls sin, sin?  Have we drank the poison of the serpent and hissed, "Hath God said?" 

Since we, the elect of God, holy and beloved (Colossians 3:12), are seated in the heavenlies (Ephesians 2:6) where Christ is seated (Colossians 3:1) and His righteousness has been imputed to us while our filthy sins have been placed upon Him (2 Corinthians 5:21), will we continue to live in them?  If the answer is yes, than we know nothing of His grace and forgiveness and will one day hear the dreadful words, "depart from Me, I never knew you!" ~ Matthew 7:23


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