Summary: We know about His passion....where’s yours?
COL 3:1Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
We have all heard about the Passion of the Christ. There was a movie made about it, there are several plays around the country (Glen Rose, Eureka Springs, Ar) that speak to this subject. Today, I want us each to ask ourselves about our passion FOR Christ. Do you have it? Are you showing it? And are you true to yourself about it?
Our text begins with the word If! "If ye then be risen with Christ," means that those things you seek, those things that occupy
your affections, are the best evidence of whether you are spiritually dead or alive. This chapter speaks of the need to mortify the flesh; "For ye are dead, and your [spiritual] life is hid with Christ in God." In what way are we dead? He means we are dead to self, dead to the world, and dead to sin. We crucify the old man of sin, take up our cross, and follow Christ. If we have not taken up His cross then we will not "be risen with Christ" above the things of this world and sin.
What does the word passion mean to you? What are some of the things you feel passionate about? There are things in life that you might have opinions about....but are you passionate about it? Websters offers some of these definitions: : intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction : a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept : an object of desire or deep interest. Here are some synonyms for PASSION: FERVOR, , ENTHUSIASM, ZEAL and they all mean intense emotion compelling action. I would like all of us, again to question our passion FOR Christ!
God has endowed the soul with two main faculties: the understanding (whereby we discern, view, and judge things) and the affections (whereby we are inclined toward the things that we perceive and view). We have been given a sound mind, which means that we can understand the difference between right and wrong and can pass judgment. Our affections incline us to do or not do. Our affections control the puppet strings of our hearts, which direct our actions, thoughts, and traffic of the mind.
To set our affections on things above, we must stop meditating on temporal things. Where our hearts are, there our conversation is. Whatever is most important to us, whatever our priorities are, is that which traffics our mind. In other words, whatever you continually think about, that becomes your passion. So what does the Bible tell us? Let’s read on......
COL 3:5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.
Our affections incline our minds and wills. They can also be considered the desires of the heart. The Lord says, "Son, give me
thine heart." What is your heart set upon? What is more decisive of whether or not you have been risen with Christ than that you
have become dead to this world and have been risen unto a newness of life?
The scripture says we are to "seek those things which are above...set your affection on things above," consists in vigorous and lively
actions through the inclinations of the soul or exercises of the heart. We must examine our hearts for those inclinations. Have we
been raised with Christ above the things of this world? Do our hearts still linger after the things of this world? Are we like
Lot’s wife, looking back over our shoulders because we do not want to give up what lies behind? Where are our affections?
The Lord calls for a fervent Spirit in serving Him. He does not want a lukewarm or indifferent spirit. He does not want a selfish
spirit that wants sins pardoned while still loving the world: "I want to watch R-rated movies [with all the cruelty, slander, and
blasphemy] and still be saved from hell." The Lord wants our hearts. If we can enjoy that which displeases the Lord, then where