“Set your minds on what is above, not on what is on the earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with the Messiah in God.” Colossians 3:2,3
Week 3 brings us to the halfway mark in this study as we’re layering truth upon truth and building our understanding of the gospel. This week, we focused on how the gospel matures us.
On Day 1, we studied how the gospel makes us new creations in Christ Jesus. We put to death the life lived in the body upon the acceptance and belief that Jesus died as our substitute on the cross and then rose to life. Because of His substitutionary death on our behalf and His resurrection, we become reborn to live lives born of the Spirit.
“For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again…Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:14,15,17
Our lesson on Day 2 focused on the struggles that wage war within us between our flesh and the Spirit. We studied passages that dealt with the pursuit of Christian living and living a life of holiness.
On Day 3, our scripture verses centered on Christ’s finished work on the cross. We were instructed to remember that as we pursue holiness, godliness and righteous living that we don’t pursue them to earn God’s favor because He has already given it through His Son. We live in the light of the Son.
We explored these ideas further in Day 4 as we focused on the pursuit of holiness in light of God’s grace and not through our own efforts. We considered 3 weapons of grace: the blood of Christ, the Word of God and the promise of the new covenant. The blood of Christ has brought us near to God. The Word of God equips us by teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness. And lastly, the requirements and the debt owed from the first covenant have been paid in full by Jesus, therefore, He ushers in the new covenant.
“…Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance – now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.” Hebrews 9:15
“…we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” Hebrews 10:10
“But when this priest (Jesus) had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” Hebrews 10:12-14 (parenthesis mine)
Our week concluded on Day 5. This lesson dealt with sin and the removal of it by getting to the root of the problem. We questioned ourselves about the common sins in our lives and the fundamental heart issue that accompanies that sin. We learned that the only way to conquer sin was to remove the root of it. Otherwise, the sin will grow and develop again. Matt Chandler used the imagery of branches and roots of a tree to make this point.
Questions to Ponder
- What practical things can I do to help with the struggle I feel between my flesh and the Spirit?
- Knowing that Christ has finished the work on the cross on my behalf, how am I to live?
- Do I seek God’s approval in order to gain His favor or in response to all He has done for me?
- Why is my heart the key to overcoming sin in my life?
Keep up the good work!
Start Week 4 lessons this week.