Summary: Christians are to take off 1)Wicked passsions 2)Hot tempers 3) Destructive speech
THE WELL DRESSED CHRISTIAN (1)
1. Illus. of resurrection of Lazarus
• Point- when he came out, still had on the grave-clothes.
2. Did you know the same thing is true spiritually? When we come out of spiritual deadness into new life in Christ, we are still wearing the garments of our old lifestyle. We still have the old attitudes and habits that we learned when we were lost. Here is the problem: those things are totally unfitting for someone who is in Jesus Christ! Pretty soon after salvation we begin the process of replacing those old sinful attitudes and habits with new Christ-like attitudes and habits.
3. Now here is the kicker: our credibility depends on how closely we can reconcile how we live on this planet with who we are in Jesus Christ! When those two things closely agree, then we have great credibility. When they do not, very little credibility.
4. Background: In chapter 2 Paul talked about our heavenly position in Christ. Now in chapters 3-4 he says, “Live like who you are in Jesus Christ.” See vs 9-10. The picture is that of taking off an old filthy set of clothes, and putting on a clean new set. Paul uses this picture to say, “stop living like who you were in your old pagan days, and start living like who you are now in Jesus Christ.”
5. Today: We are to live a different lifestyle once we are in Jesus Christ.
6. Next week we’re going to look at some of the new attitudes and habits we are to put on once we are in Jesus Christ. This week, lets look at some of the old attitudes and habits we are to take off.
7. What are some of the old habits we are to take off?
I. CHRISTIANS ARE TO TAKE OFF WICKED PASSIONS
1. See vs 5.
Fornication- God draws a circle around a married man and woman. The Bible calls any form of sexual activity outside that circle fornication.
Uncleanness- refers to what sexual impurity does. It defiles us before God.
Passion and evil desire- refers to that inner craving for physical pleasure that God has said is out of bounds.
Covetousness, which is idolatry- Why include this in a list of sexual sins? Because covetousness means desiring something someone else has for your own purposes. In this context, it means coveting someone else’s body for your own personal pleasure. When you do that, you have is essence made an idol of your own personal desires. You have said, “God, I don’t care what your word says, I want what I want!”
2. Principle: Pagans may not see anything wrong with this kind of activity. Because we are God’s children, we are to take off wicked passions.
3. Illus. of Magic Johnson
• I was a student at Southeastern Seminary when Magic Johnson made the announcement that he had contracted aids.
• I was in the Student Center at Southeastern Seminary when the news conference came on.
• I listened in amazement as he told the media, “as a professional basketball player, I have had one night stands with dozens of women. Through one of these relationships I contracted the aids virus.”
• Even more amazing was the media response over the next few weeks. He was lauded as both a hero and a role model.
• Here’s the point: Magic Johnson may be a role model to the liberal media, but he is not a role model for God’s people. God’s people are to put off wicked passions.
4. See I Thess. 4:3-5
5. Bottom Line? Although we live in a world saturated with temptation, we are to put off wicked passions.
II. CHRISTIANS ARE TO PUT OFF HOT TEMPERS
1. See vs 8a. Anger, wrath, and malice are an unholy trinity that God’s people are to put off.
Anger- "orgeand it refers to a slow, seething, smoldering anger.
Wrath- thumosand it refers to that quick, sudden outburst of anger that comes and goes in minutes or even seconds.
Malice- kakiaand it refers to the desire to bring hurt and harm to someone.
2. I want you to notice the progression here. We have that quick flash of white-hot anger (I can’t believe they did that to me). If we don’t deal with it biblically, it becomes a slow, smoldering anger (that’s it, I’m through being Mr. Niceguy. I’ll never forget this what they did). Inevitably, that leads to malice (no matter what is takes, they’re going to pay. I’m going to hurt them like they hurt me).
3. Principle: In the pagan world, these attitudes may be tolerated or even applauded. But as Christians we are to take off wrath, anger and malice.