Okay y'all, we're about to get real practical... which seems a bit odd jumping off of Chapter 2's ending telling us the do's and don'ts "are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh".
Asceticism is one of the many influences Paul was refuting with this letter, it was something the church of Colossi faced as a threat to the gospel message.
Culturally, we may read this chapter and be tempted with legalism- the action is not what God is after. This is not about doing but becoming, putting on, identifying with.
Paul builds to this chapter, easily illustrating Christian living is created, built and sustained with (and on) a foundation of theological truth. Not from a secret knowledge, nor from pious actions or strictness.
Yes, there are imperatives but the whys are far more important than the whats.
Re-read 2:20-23 and compare it to 3:1-4. Compare and contrast these two sections.
What ways are they similar, what ways are they different?
"Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices Colossians" 3:5-9
Look up the meaning of the Greek word “nekrosate” (translated to “put to death”). Does this change your understanding of this verse? If so, in what way?
What are we told to put away in this chapter? What are we told to put on?
In verse 15 & 16, Paul tells the Colossians to “let” the “peace of Christ rule in your hearts” and “the word of Christ dwell in you richly.” What does the language of “letting” suggest to us? How do we “let” something happen? What are ways we don’t “let” something happen?
Do you think clothing relates to identity? If so, what does the way you clothe yourself express about you? How relevant is this language when we think about the two lists we made for question 3?
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. 3:17
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. 3:23-24
When you read verses 17 and 23-24 what kind of feelings does it create in you? Do you feel liberated, limited, etc? Why?
Excited to meet with y'all on Saturday! We will be doing Zoom and in person gathering styles again. Look for the Zoom link via email and on the group page.
Reach out if you have any questions!