1 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.
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. 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must also 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 Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all (Colossians 3.1-11).
Here we are, newborns in Christ, so now we have to decide what are we going to do? The world would say do whatever we want and God will sort it out in the end. However, the Bible says, we should live our lives today as if it was the last and Christ was right here. So, again what are we going to do? Well, Paul addresses this for us, in this chapter of Colossians. The church was facing some decisions and Paul wanted to remind them they were new in Christ, set free by His shed blood and they were no longer held prisoner by their past. Therefore, they needed to set their minds on godly things and not worldly things, which will confuse them and pull their focus away from what God really wants for them.
Paul is clearly giving us the same advice as did Christ, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6.19-21, ESV). Where is our heart? Is it really with God or in the world? Paul wants us to understand when we allow Jesus Christ to come into our lives, we are different, we have died to our former selves, and are raised as new creatures in Christ. Consequently, when Christ comes back, we will appear with Him in glory.
This reality must change us, make us think differently and cause us to react to life in a whole new manner. We must get rid of our former life, we are not talking about our jobs, family, school, church, friends, and so on. Unless those things are a problem for the cause of Christ. Now, let us be clear, when it comes to family we are called to live within the bounds of holy matrimony as much as God allows. He does not want to see anyone get a divorce, however, if the situation is out of control, and all avenues have been tried, then do what needs to be done. Children, we are always called to honor our parents, as long as the things they are asking are moral, ethical and within the bounds of the law. Now we cannot just say they are not so we do not have to obey them, remember God knows what is right and wrong so honor them, and through our living they might come to know Christ as their Savior.
We are to “put to death” (vs. 5), whatever in our earthly nature will keep us from serving God the way He wants us to. Each of us has to look within our own lives, allowing the Holy Spirit access to every corner of our lives, and let Him reveal anything and everything which we need to destroy so we might be able to serve God to the fullest. When we realize how we used to live we might be surprised.
But we cannot stop there, for if we did, we would have only cleaned up half of our lives. Many times, these things are the big things. It is like cleaning out the closet or garage, when we get started, we see the big items, clothes, shoes, hangers, and so on. Or in the garage, cans, tools, yard equipment, etc.… In any case when we clean up those items, we feel like we are done, but if we were to look closer, we would find, smaller items like, buttons, pins, string, dirt or nuts, bolts, nails and so on.
Paul wants us also to look closer in our lives, because when we have found the large items to put to death, there are still some small things which need to be dealt with. Look at the list he gives in verses eight and nine: anger, rage malice, slander, and filthy language along with not lying to each other. These are things we must get rid of also since we have shed our old self. If we have put on a new life, become a new creature in Christ, then these things should not be part of who we are any more. It does not mean we are not working through them, but they cannot be us, they cannot dominate our lives, they must be a small part or no part. Something, we must be killing all the day long for the cause of Christ, because as a child of God we are being renewed in knowledge of our Creator every day.
God does not look at us as rich, poor, this side of the tracks or that side, this color, or that color. He does not care what we know or do not know, or what our background is. What He cares about is, will we be obedient to Him and walk according to His ways? This requires each and every one of us no matter who we are or where we come from to surrender to Him, and lose our old self, growing up in our new life each day.
Almighty God of all the Universe, and Lord of my life, I give You everything. I do not what to hold anything back from You anymore. Lord, will You help me to identify areas in my life I am still hanging onto, areas that are hidden from me, and areas I do not want to know about and help me to release them to You. Lord I want to walk in Your ways, and be a servant who is obedient to You and You alone. Thank You for Your loving kindness in my life and my I serve You faithfully each and every day. All this I pray in Your Holy Son Jesus Christ’s Name, Amen.
 The New International Version. (2011). (Col 3:1–11). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.
 The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Mt 6:19–21). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.