Colossians 3:5 Death to… Part 1
Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Colossians 3:5Attention all Christians! Yes, this is addressed to us…
Quick re-cap of verses one through four: Paul is speaking to the believer and is announcing that if we are in-Christ than we are to be setting our full heart and mind on Jesus and not on things of the earth. We’ve died to the things of the earth and now are alive in the things of Christ.
Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth
Paul again mentions the word death in regards to our physical body and conscious efforts toward sin. He’s talking about putting the evil desires that creep up on us and sometimes take over us when we entertain thoughts that are not of Christ, to death. Does this mean that we kill our body? No, certainly not. That would be pretty crazy. It means that we slay or deprive of power, the evil desires that come our way.
Of course, we don’t do this of our own power. We can’t. We need to do this by the power of the Holy Spirit. We need to call on Him with full force. When we do, then those evil desires slowly and surely go away because our focus is now directed toward our Savior.
Then Paul provides a list of things that we should put to death:
fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry
Let’s define these a little more. Defining the words will bring new light on the subject. (By the way, the information within the quotations below are taken from the John MacArthur study Bible.)
First, fornication. “Also translated “immorality,” it refers to any form of sexual sin”. I’ll be bold in asking this next question: Does this mean you can’t have sex with your wife? No, certainly not. That is something which God has blessed to happen within marriage. But, if you are entertaining thoughts of sex with other women, that is sexual sin. Also, any physical sex outside of marriage is sexual sin because God intended for us to engage in this blessing only within the confines of marriage.
I must add that it is not sin at the first thought, maybe even the second, but when you keep that thought in mind and, like I said, entertain it then it becomes an issue. What to do? At first thought, wipe it out by calling on Jesus and do like Joseph did when Potifar’s wife tried to seduce him, run away. Emphasis: don’t jog, run, run, run. Take your mind away from it as fast as your mind can move ;).
What about the physical part, you know, the tangible; the part which can be seen with the eye? There are many scenarios, but I’ll give an example of one sexual sin that is prevalent in society today. That’s having an affair (or as the Bible calls it, adultery) or cheating on your spouse. So it may start out by talking to that male of female co-worker at the office; then, you go out to eat lunch (once, twice, etc….); then, you begin to hang out after work (just for a bit, then a bit more); then, you end up in bed. Whoa, whoa, whoa, you might say. Ruben, that’s going too far with this. I may be going too far, but it’s true. This happens all of the time.
So how to escape this? Again, run away like Joseph did. Don’t worry. That woman or man will be ok. Seek the spouse which the Lord has given you and build up that relationship instead.
Second, uncleanness. “Also translated “impurity,” this term goes beyond sexual acts of sin to encompass evil thoughts and intentions as well.”
Jesus said that even thinking of committing adultery (whether single or married) is sin. Yes, it is impure and not clean. It goes against everything that God is for. Remember, our minds are going to bring up some crazy things, especially if we dwelled in foolish things before we came to Christ. The question here is: what are we going to do with those crazy thoughts that come into our minds sometimes (maybe a lot of times)? We have switch from the bad to the good.
Yes, scripture memorized helps a lot during these times. Take the bad thought captive, throw it out, then bring in the good thought, that is, scripture you’ve memorized. Dwell on it for a while, and yes the bad will eventually go away. I know, I know. Sometimes it’s a tough battle (I’ve been there) but it can be done.
When you keep doing this, not as a ritual, but true from the heart, then eventually the bad thoughts will be less and less. You’ll notice the difference.
I’ll finish up with the rest of the passage in my next blog post. In the mean time, if you would like to encourage other bros and siss, share your testimony on how the Lord has helped you escape the evil desires that have hit you here and there.
But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good 1 Thessalonians 5:21
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things arejust, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things Philippians 4:8
If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit Galatians 5:25
You shall not commit adultery Exodus 20:14
But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart Matthew 5:28
My son, do not forget my law, But let your heart keep my commands; For length of days and long life And peace they will add to you. Let not mercy and truth forsake you; Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart, And so find favor and high esteem In the sight of God and man Proverbs 3:1-4
No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
All Scripture taken from the New King James Version