Summary: The garments of your new nature in Christ are to be worn in your home and at church... these are garments you wear in public as attituded that translate into action as you interact with others.
Title: Being Gracious People
Thesis: The garments of your new nature in Christ are to be worn in your home, at church and in public… these garments are attitudes that translate into actions as you interact with others.
Series Title: Living with others at home and at church: How to walk hand in hand when you don’t see eye to eye.
We have now transitioned from the old garments worn before we were in Christ. Those attitudes and actions of your old nature were likened to filthy rags that needed to be stripped off and burned. Anger, rage, malicious behavior, denigrating and vulgar speaking are to be removed and discarded… not laundered and put back in the closet. Therein is part of the problem with Christians… we become followers of Christ and receive a new nature but we keep some of the old stuff around just in case we wish to go rogue and relapse into our former and un-Christ-like ways.
Our text begins by giving us three good reasons for putting on the garments or characteristics that are to be exemplified in our new life in Christ: “Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves…”
God wants us to live into this new life in Christ because:
1. God chose us!
2. God set us apart or consecrated us making us holy!
3. God loves us!
And now that you and I are aware of those things we are encouraged to live into who we now are… God wants us to live into this new life. So now, having stripped off and discarded those old garments we are ready to get dressed in our new wardrobe… the wardrobe God picked out for us.
And here is what God’s Word says about getting dressed in this new wardrobe. Understanding that attitudes lead to actions he begins with a series of attitudes and outlooks that will influence and guide our behavior.
I. Attitudes of Gracious People
The metaphor in our text is that of “getting dressed.” Depending on the translation words are used like “put on” or “Clothe yourselves” or as Eugene Peterson puts it in The Message, “dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you.”
It seems there is an outfit for every sport. Footballers wear helmets, pads and the team jersey. Biker riders were helmets and those silly pants that make the look like they have a loaded diaper. Baseball players were their gloves, baseball caps and team uniforms. Grooms and groomsmen wear tuxes. Men and women in the military wear the uniforms of their respective branches of the service. Christians put on the garments that reflect who they are as Children of God.
Before we actually unpack what each of these attitudes looks like it is pertinent to note at the onset that every single attitude translates into a way we will relate to others. These are garments are designed for wearing in public. These attitudes set the tone for how we will live and work together in our homes and in our church.