Three Rules for Holiness

Holiness is an important part  of the Christian life. Greek word (NT) for 2) Holiness- set apart From this same word we get the term Sanctification- set apart for God’s purposes As Christians, we’re called to live as  Sanctified, Holy people. We’re called to be salt & light. We called to: -behave different -talk different -live different  FROM THE WORLD 3) 1 Pt 1:13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” When we think of God,  we think of absolutely holiness. Yet, that’s how he calls us to live. Therein lies the challenge. For all of us, holiness is not a one-time action, It’s a lifetime process. 4)  1 Pt 2:9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.  11 Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.  Even though we sin, God still calls us holy. Today’s text is Col 3:1-17 It’s a text about  How we are to live. In the preface, Paul says: 5) Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.  In order to be holy, we’ve got to  Set our minds on things above. We act NOW to prepare ourselves  for Christ’s return. Many live as if holiness is optional. It’s not! 6) Hebrews 12:14 Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.  Holiness is essential towards getting to Heaven. We don’t earn our salvation, But it’s how we’re to live. In today’s passage,  Paul gives 3 Rules For Holiness  7) 1. Kill The Bad Stuff This summer, you’ve likely been spraying Roundup Wasp Spray You do it to kill stuff. In our spiritual lives,  We’ve got to eliminate the bad stuff 8) Col 3:5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.  The Bible tells us to: “Put to death” our sinful nature. This is very strong, violent language. When God told the Children of Israel  to take the Promised Land,  He told them to Kill the Enemy. They did. For that reason,  many people don’t like to study OT. They say; “It’s too violent" In order to understand NT,  you need to understand OT. God wasn’t trying to make them barbaric. However, He knew the influence  that evil nations would have. He knew that His people Could not co-exist with evil nations around them. Therefore, he tells them to; -drive out -eliminate enemies In the end, they didn’t & God was right. The evil nations: -intermarried -corrupted God’s people With time, they became  like all the other nations around them. That’s what happens to Christians  who abide with sin. We let it influence our thinking. With time,  we become like everyone else around us. That’s why God tells us to  Kill the bad stuff. What He tells Children of Israel to do physically,  is a type for what He tells us to do spiritually. 9) 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11 Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.  Look at these sins: -anger -rage -malice -slander -filthy language -lying We’re all guilty. These are our enemy. We can’t co-exist with them. We’re told to: "Put them to death" With God’s help,  the Children of Israel  achieved supernatural victories. With God’s help, we can too. The 2nd rule for Holiness  10) 2. Put Some Better Clothes On This isn’t a sermon about going shopping. It’s a sermon about better living. 11) Col 3:12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.  Think how much time & money  we spend on clothing. Do we put that much effort into: Being more compassionate? Being kinder? Being more patient? Being more humble or forgiving? These are fruits of the Spirit. These are also how God  wants us to clothe ourselves. When you are clothed with compassion,  the poor will notice. When you are clothed with kindness, the evil will notice. When you are clothed with humility,  the arrogant will notice. When you are clothed with patience,  the rude people will notice. When you are clothed with forgiveness,  the angry will notice. You will impact your world,  one person at a time. That’s how God tells us to live. The 3rd rule for Holiness 12) 3. Clean Up Your Hearts This part will bring you joy & change your life forever. 13) Col 3:15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  The 1st thing he tells us: Col 3:15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, When you live in God’s will,  there is a peace. People may be mean to you,  But they can’t take that away. Life may be full of adversity, But it can’t rob you of God’s peace. God’s peace surpasses all understanding. The 2nd thing he tells us: Be thankful You may have an awful job, Be thankful You may have hardships, Be thankful 14) 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, Wisdom is: -God given (Solomon) -Learned through hardships We’re to admonish (build one another up)  through wisdom we share. 15) sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. God designed us to sing. The type of music you listen to, will determine The types of songs you sing. Does your music depict the best OR worst of humanity? Is your music uplifting & encouraging? OR  Sad & depressing? Do you listen to Christian music? If you do, you’re probably singing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Christian music is incredible. When we worship, we enter the presence of God. Our hearts are filled with joy. That’s something that secular music can’t do. Notice what psalms, hymns & spiritual songs bring to your heart…. 16) sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with GRATITUDE in your hearts to God. Instead of looking at your hardships,  your looking at your blessings. 17) 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  This is what holiness looks like. It’s a  Peace-filled Compassionate Kind Humble Thankful life It looks different & that’s what holiness is all about.

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