Formations lesson for April 21: A People Who Clothe Themselves in Christ
April 4 2002 by Steve Zimmerman , Colossians 3:1-17

Formations lesson for April 21: A People Who Clothe Themselves in Christ | Friday, April 5, 2002

Friday, April 5, 2002

Formations lesson for April 21: A People Who Clothe Themselves in Christ

By Steve Zimmerman Colossians 3:1-17

The restaurant had been in town for years. As time went by, however, the crowds no longer made their daily trek to the establishment. The owners spruced up the walls with new decor. They offered a drive-by window for quicker service. They even made sure their employees greeted the customers with the friendliest welcome in town. All these attempts were done to bring the customers back, but they weren't working.

One day something happened. The doors flew open and the people started coming back. They really didn't care for wall designs or fast service. They weren't that impressed with the employees' manners. Two factors changed everything. The restaurant now had new management and a new menu was added that offered better food than what they were getting. Now the place has standing room only everyday!

The New Manager (Colossians 3:1-4) Paul reminded the church members in Colosse that they had a new owner. In these verses they find out that Christ has raised them up from a life of sin and death. Because of that point they need to buy stock within the new company that is more concerned about heavenly issues than over anything that the world had to offer in their former lives. This new manager will also give out huge dividends in the end if they stay with him. They may not be able to see it now, but the benefits are great!

The New Menu (Colossians 3:5-17) In order for us to get a better picture of how good the new menu was for the Colossians we have to understand what was offered before. Sins against God as well as people were staples each time. The problems of controlling one's speech in the early part of this section were truly evident on the old menu. The apostle knew that if these early Christians did not alter the spiritual food going into their souls that the outward results of any new transformation would be minimal.

On one side of the new menu were the choices offered for a better relationship with each other. If these folks could digest these new ways of caring for each other such as compassion and patience found in verse 12, they would begin to show signs of the new birth. They also would take on a lifestyle much like that of the Lord.

The other side of the menu in verses 15-16 focused more on their relationship with God. Paul admonishes them to take the peace of Christ into their hearts. Take on a thankful existence. Rejoice over what Christ has done in contrast to what the world is dishing out on its plate. Allowing the message of the gospel to penetrate the very essence of who they are is another part of the menu. A good dose of singing is also on the order. Once Christ made a difference in their lives those new believers couldn't help but sing!

Yet the most critical aspect of this new format is found in the last verse. Whether in word or in action, the Colossian Christians should choose to do everything as a result of their relationship to Jesus. It is therefore imperative that their nourishment comes from Him.

Once these fledgling believers started ordering from the new menu, a healthy spiritual body was taking shape for not only the new believer but for the church family. This renovation would be so evident that everyone wanted it, too. The good news about this new food is that it never runs out. Christ always supplies the need.

"Can I take your order?"

It doesn't take long to figure out the similarities between the restaurant and our church. If we ever get the idea of turning our lives over completely to His management and allow the new life in Christ to enrich us, things will change.

Just think what would happen. Our churches would not have enough room for everyone to get in next week! What a nice problem to have.

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4/4/2002 11:00:00 PM by Steve Zimmerman , Colossians 3:1-17 | with 0 comments
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