Thursday, March 24, 2011


F – BE YE HOLY – 6

Rom. 13:14  We have found many of the “dirty clothes” we must take off before we can put on Christ.  Too often we want to keep one leg in our dirty clothes as we make provision for the things of the world or the “flesh.”  To be holy we must completely put on Christ Jesus.  This is a day-by-day process from the time we become a Christian until we reach eternity at the end of our life on earth.  2 Cor. 4:16  Since it is day-by-day and sometimes hour-by-hour, our inward man is renewed every day.  How?  By a constant spirit of prayer and desire—by a daily study of our instruction book, the Bible—and by a willingness to follow God’s will for our lives and to do everything to the glory of God.
1 Cor. 10:31

In order to do the above, we must take control of our thoughts for this is where everything we do and say starts.  2 Cor. 10:5  As long as we keep thinking, reading, watching things that are not a glory to God, then we are definitely making provision for the flesh.  In Galatia Jews were allowing those not Christians to change them right back into what they had come out of.  Gal. 1:6;  Gal. 2:18  We can do the same with the world if we spend time with the friends that are still doing the things that we left and leading us to do the same.  We need to be “new” every moment of every day. 

Christ was made perfect in His obedience.  Heb. 5:8,9  We follow Christ.  Obedience is the first step to be holy.  1 Pet. 2:21,22  We have studied specific sins of which we must completely take out of our lives.  Jesus was beset on every hand with temptations, yet He conquered.  We immediately think of his temptations in the wilderness following His baptism.  He was tempted with the desire of the flesh, desire of the eyes, and the pride of life.  When the Pharisees were constantly trying to trick Him, He did not sin with anger or tongue.  On the cross when they abused and mocked Him, He only forgave them.  He understands our temptations and leads our way.  Heb. 4:14,15  We sometimes think that He could do that because He was divine.  We forget that He was made a human being just like we are.  Rom. 8:3;  Heb. 2:18  Christ understands and feels with us but He wants us to conquer sin.

Rom. 12:2  As human beings in the flesh we have this innate desire to conform or look and be like everyone else around us.  This makes it important to know where we are looking.  Who are we trying to imitate and conform to?  In our dress:  there must be a line for Christians between nakedness or almost naked and ankles.  Do we dress just like everyone else on the street?  This is the first thing a person sees.  Are we willing to give up a little comfort (that’s so hot) for the Christ who suffered and died for us?  What image do we portray?  We mentioned that our decisions are based on commands, examples, and principles.  This tests our willingness to follow the principle of modesty. 

1 Tim. 2:9  There must be meaning in the words, “modest,” “appropriate.”  Honestly decide.  If in doubt, follow the safe way.  We never want to endanger living our lives to the glory of Christ just because we want “our way.”

Col. 3:12-15  gives us a list of spiritual clothes which we are to wear.  After a person sees us in our physical clothes, then they begin experiencing our spiritual clothes.  The first mentioned here is a heart of compassion.  One version uses “tender mercy.”  We are to have pity for the pain and problems of other people.  This isn’t just a “feel sorry” for them but a heartfelt feeling for what they are going through.  We need to become a part of their problem in doing anything we can.  It may just be a listening ear but our eyes need to be open to needs of the situation.  2 Cor. 1:3,4;  Phil. 2:1  We encourage and comfort in our compassion and it brings us together in Christ.  We have a God of mercy and compassion.  As He gives us comfort, we comfort others.

Kindness is next on this list.  We love in our compassion.  Kindness makes us “do.”  It puts feet on our love for one another.  Part of the Greek definition is “usefulness.”  Kindness is listed as part of the fruit of the Spirit.  Gal. 5:22  If we are living a spiritual, holy life, we will be kind and gentle.  Eph. 4:32;  Titus 2:5  We need to take note of the phrase “Word of God not be dishonored.”  We can dishonor God and the name “Christian” by the way we look, act, and live.

Humility is an important attribute of a Christian.  In speaking of “to be holy,”  we definitely do not want to ever have the attitude “holier than thou.”  By far, we aren’t holy yet.  Remember, this is a process—day by day.  Humility is part of that process.  Eph.4:1,2  We have to live humbly to be worthy of our calling as a Christian.  The term, “lowliness of mind,” is also used.  Phil. 2:3  is very descriptive of humility.  To think another is better than “me” when I want my way or my say is not easy sometimes. 
1 Pet.5:5  A person void of humility can be self-righteous and trouble surrounds him.

We have such a flimsy understanding of meekness.  It has been called “strength under control.”  It needs to be under the control of God.  It is a submitting to God’s control as good for whatever comes without resistance.  Often it follows humility.  2 Cor. 10:1  Christ is described as meek.  Certainly, Christ was not weak.  Gal. 6:1  Even in helping someone in their sin, meekness and gentleness is to be shown.  2 Tim. 2:24,25   In putting off our old life, we receive God’s Word in meekness as it is implanted in our hearts.  Jam.1:21  Christ said of Himself that He was meek.  Matt. 11:29  Meekness involves many attributes for a meek man takes wrongs with patience and endurance.  He leaves it up to God to control situations.  It takes a meek man to have peace.  Yet he is not run over but stands for what is right in a gentle way.

Longsuffering is “to put up with.”  This is difficult for us to do.  “They can’t treat me that way” is often our plea.  God is longsuffering with our sinful lives.  This involves patience and forgiveness.  God suffers long with us.  Rom. 2:4  One version of this verse mentions tolerance.  This does not mean a smoothing over of sin but rather patience with us until we can be victorious over it.  He knows our hearts and if we long to be right with Him.  2 Pet. 3:9  Yet if someone ruffles our feathers, anger flares; words spew; emotions grow hot.  We won’t put up with anything if our lives are not spiritual.  We look at the little picture and cannot see the big picture as God sees it.  Eph. 4:2  The word, “tolerance,” is also used in this verse.  Are there are people we cannot “tolerate.”  Then we are not longsuffering.

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