Seeking Jesus First - Aug. 31, 2023

Seeking Jesus First - Aug. 31, 2023
Photo by Andre Hunter / Unsplash

When a person comes to God through faith in His Son Christ Jesus, a putting off and a putting on will follow. We are saved by grace through faith. Grace and faith are both gifts from God. But with gifts and promise like these…

We are given the tools we need to put off the old man and his passions and lusts and put on the new man which is fashioned like God in righteousness and true holiness (the sanctifying/justifying/glorifying love of God).

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.” (Colossians 3:1–11, NKJV)

Our faith in Jesus raises us with Him into a new way of thinking and being. We start thinking and acting from a heaven-aware mindset. We start thinking and living from a death and resurrection mindset.

With this new way of thinking and being, we put to death our former lifestyles that may have included, sexual sin and impurity, diseases, and desires for forbidden things, including the exalted desire for wealth, which is the essence of idol worship.. As we put these things to death, we also put off anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth, and lying.

Paul taught salvation by grace through faith but he never minced words about putting off the dead man of the flesh and fleshly desires and pursuits.

But how is it possible to put off the old mindset, especially when we are bombarded with it everyday?

Just remember, God doesn’t expect us to walk around naked. We put it off because we are putting on Christ and the two mindsets are not compatible. The carnal mind is at war with the mind of Christ. The Spirit of God in us is jealous for our whole mind and all of our affection. He will always move us toward our new identity because He wants what is best for us.

Think about another side of the equation for just a minute. It will not just benefit ourselves to put on Christ and put off the old man. The more we say yes to our identity in Christ, the less we influence and hurt others with our fleshly attacks. We leave fewer broken hearts behind us. We give others less reasons to be addicts. Fewer people are hurt by us so fewer people will hurt others because of us. Our negative “butterfly effect” will be reduce and eventually cease. Simply by putting off the old, we are making a huge difference in the world.

But putting on the new starts a positive “butterfly effect”. The love of God starts rippling across the world. God’s kindness begins to flow into more people. These are great reasons to make the effort needed to “perfect holiness” in ourselves. “But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” (James 1:4, NKJV) According to the Word of God, we are already spiritually complete in Christ Jesus. It is our part to perfect that holiness in our soul and body with our Helper, Holy Spirit.

So, how do we do it?

  • Minimize the world’s voice in your life. Listen less to what the world has to say about you.
  • Maximize God’s voice in your life.
  • Listen to The Word and anointed preaching.
  • Read, study, meditate, memorize and confess The Word of God.
  • Put God’s Word in your mouth and keep it there. Let Holy Spirit set a watch before your lips. Soak every word that you want to say in the love and truth of God.
  • Repent and receive the mind of Christ.
  • Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
  • Confess everything to Jesus. When old thinking comes into your head, confess it to Jesus. Let Holy Spirit speak to you about it.

Stop the fraudulent thinking that says you can’t do it. And believe that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.