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Friends in Christ Weekly Message
July 31, 2004

     So if you're serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don't shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ - that's where the action is. See things from his perspective.
     Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life - even though invisible to spectators - is with Christ in God. He is your life. When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you'll show up, too - the real you, the glorious you. Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ.
     And that means killing off everything connected with that way of death: sexual promiscuity, impurity, lust, doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it, and grabbing whatever attracts your fancy. That's a life shaped by things and feelings instead of by God. It's because of this kind of thing that God is about to explode in anger. It wasn't long ago that you were doing all that stuff and not knowing any better. But you know better now, so make sure it's all gone for good: bad temper, irritability, meanness, profanity, dirty talk.
     Don't lie to one another. You're done with that old life. It's like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you've stripped off and put in the fire. Now you're dressed in a new wardrobe. Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it. All the old fashions are now obsolete. Words like Jewish and non-Jewish, religious and irreligious, insider and outsider, uncivilized and uncouth, slave and free, mean nothing. From now on everyone is defined by Christ, everyone is included in Christ.

Colossians 3:1-11 (Message*)

As believers, our old lives should be dead, replaced by new resurrection lives in Christ. All the bad habits and willfulness of our worldly lives should pass away. This doesn't all happen magically. We must look at things from Christ's perspective, pursue the things of Christ, and seriously live a new life.

We also need to understand that Christ has broken down all the worldly divisions. What someone's ethnicity, background, class, etc. are means nothing to Christ. So we need to follow Christ, and jettison all our prejudices and stereotypes, looking at each person freshly from the inside out.

Dear friends, we each need to prayerfully consider to what extent we are living the new resurrection lives we are offered by Christ. Have we put aside all the bad habits, selfishness, prejudices and stereotypes of the world? How are we growing into the new people God would have us be?

Bill Samuel

* The Message version ©2002 by Eugene H. Peterson.

©2004 Friends in Christ, Inc.

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Document last modified on Saturday, 07-Aug-2004 19:54:54 EDT