by Philip Layton
Paul gives the Christians in Colossae guidelines for holiness
How practical or relevant are these words (vv 18-21)? Are they only applicable to when the letter was written?
What would be the danger of taking these verses literally and without consideration to context, then and now?
Can a wife submit to her husband ‘as is fitting in the Lord’ (v 18), and in a way that is not an example of mere sexism?
Is it possible that the combination of mutual submission and love could actually be a proposal for equality (vv 18, 19)?
Share your thoughts below, or tweet about it with the #boundlessbible hashtag. Don't forget this week's Children's Challenge!
Going Deeper From 'Words of Life'
The great Salvation Army holiness teacher Commissioner Samuel Logan Brengle said that holiness is about subtraction and addition. We remove what is bad from our lives and fill the gap with good things. This is the golden rule for someone who would like to live a holy life.
It is our duty to put to death temptations and desires which naturally incline us to the things of the world.
What shall we put off? Lusts of the flesh and love of the world which are contrary to the Christian state and the heavenly hope. Paul gives a list of these in verses 5-9 of our reading. The apostle also wrote to the believers in Rome:
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2).
Holiness is not a slogan or theory. It is to be seen in practical ways. In our day-to-day living, if an item of clothing we put on is dirty, we replace it with a clean one. So it is with practical holiness. We put on ‘work clothes’ that suit God’s holy people (vv 12-14).
Lord Jesus, I long to be perfectly whole,
I want thee for ever to live in my soul;
Break down every idol, cast out every foe,
Now wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
(SASB 436 v 1)
Beverly IvanyTags: Colossians