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Friday, April 22, 2016

Learning to Take Off the Old and Put On the New

In review of Ephesians 4:22-24 it says, “22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”

Bottom Line:
Put off our old self, which is being corrupted by deceitful desires. You heart and mind must be made new, created in God’s likeness and reveals itself in a life that is upright and holy.

What this means to me:
I need to let go of my old self, which was influenced by the world and its deceitful desires, and put on my new self with new thought processes like God that reveals itself in a lifestyle that is upright and holy.

Today's passage comes from the second half of Ephesians chapter 4 in which Paul is giving us what it looks like to live as children of light.

He first instructs us to no longer live as the Gentiles (our worldly culture) do, for they are hopelessly confused. They are full of darkness; far from God because they have closed their minds and hardened their hearts against him. They have no sense of shame. The live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity. [Seems not much changes, a lot of those around me are the same way.]

But this isn't what we've learned about that truth that comes from Christ. Paul therefore encourages us to "throw off our old sinful natures and former ways of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Rather we are to let the Spirit renew our thoughts and attitudes. We are to put on our new natures, created to be like God; truly righteous and holy."

We are to tell the truth and stop telling lies to those around us, for we are all parts of the same body. Don't let anger control us, for anger gives a foothold to the devil.

Use our gifts and talents for good hard work, and give generously to others in need. Stay away from foul or abrasive language. Instead let everything we say be good and helpful, words that build up with encouragement.

He goes on to tell us not to bring sorrow to God's Holy Spirit by the way we live. He then explains that we are to get rid of bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, we are to be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven us.

So, in order to have any kind of lasting change in my life, I need to start with my body, and that includes changing the way I think so that what I let into your mind and the things I think about honor God.

Ephesians 4:22b-24 says, “Put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and ... put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (NIV).

There is a putting off, and a putting on. My health really comes down to stopping some stuff I need to stop doing and starting some stuff I need to start doing. Mainly to stop putting negative, hurtful things in my body, and start putting in things that edify.

Likewise I need to stop putting negative, hurtful things into my mind, and start watching and listening to things that edify and make me more like Christ. In the renewal of my mind, I’ve got to put off before I can put on.

In summary, I need to take off the old before I can put on the new. That’s true spiritually and emotionally and mentally.

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