Following Jesus: taking off the old, putting on the new

Posted Jul 23, 2021

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Daily Scripture

Colossians 3:8-10

8 But now set aside these things, such as anger, rage, malice, slander, and obscene language. 9 Don’t lie to each other. Take off the old human nature with its practices 10 and put on the new nature, which is renewed in knowledge by conforming to the image of the one who created it.

Reflection Questions

Paul wrote that choosing to follow Jesus is more than just a one-time emotional experience in church. He named anger, rage, malice, slander, obscene language, and lying as things to “set aside.” Scholar William Barclay noted that in the early church, “When the Christian was baptized, he put off his old clothes when he went down into the water and when he emerged he put on a new and pure white robe.”* Following Jesus takes a serious personal choice to truly become a new person.

  • Barclay said we can turn the items in this passage into positive commands.* The reverse of malice and slander show that a Christian must be KIND, and PURE rather than obscene. How easy or hard do you find it to set aside feelings of anger, rage or malice toward other people? How can you be kind even when in a situation when you need to make an honest appraisal of another person?
  • Barclay added that in order not to lie we must be TRUE. He noted, “It is easy to distort the truth; an alteration in the tone of voice or an eloquent look will do it; and there are silences which can be as false and misleading as any words.”* In what ways can the standard of truth help you avoid sweeping generalizations or baseless conclusions about people’s inner motives? When have you been the receiver, or the giver, of false judgments made in anger or malice?

Prayer

Lord Jesus, help me discard nurtured anger, with the other negative qualities Paul listed, as I would a dirty, worn-out shirt. Guide me as I follow you by putting on your new way of life. Amen.


* William Barclay, The Letters to the Philippians, Colossians and Thessalonians (Revised Edition). Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 1975, pp. 153-154.

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Darren Lippe

Darren Lippe

Darren Lippe helps facilitate Journey 101 “Loving God” classes, guides a 7th-grade Sunday school class, is a member of a small group and a men’s group, and serves on the curriculum team.

We’ve been in the market for a used-car to replace a 2005 Avalon before our son goes to K-State. (It’s a shame that cars don’t really last anymore.) We’ve found that there are a wide variety of used-car dealerships:

  • Vegan Auto Mart – They have a very poor rating. They have a problem with leeks in the gas tanks.
  • I-KIA Automotive - I thought it was just a typo, but apparently you have to build the car yourself.
  • Chick-fil-A is upgrading their delivery fleet. Unfortunately, the selection of used vehicles is limited to coupes.

Then I came across an unusual dealership, Holy Motors Company, with an unbelievable customer rating of 9/5. Take a look at some of their “reviews.”

  • This Father/Son dealership is awesome! They took in my old car (Anger–1980) and they offered me a trade-in for a 2021-Peace. It has made such a difference! Sometimes when I wake up all stressed out in the middle of the night, I get up out of bed & just go sit in my new car. The transformation has been so freeing. I have no idea why I held on to that old jalopy so long. - Myrna in Morganville
  • I had a really beat up 2001-Rage. It had seen a lot of use, since my commute takes me through the Grandview Triangle. I didn’t expect much for it. HMC offered me a 2021-Calm in exchange. I’ve now found that I no longer try to read people’s minds to quickly judge their motives, I don’t endlessly anticipate the worst-case scenario, & I spend more time listening than talking. It is so refreshing. I can’t believe they can afford to do this, but Holy Motors said that they’ve been willing to make a huge sacrifice on behalf of their customers for, like, ever. - Gertrude in Galena
  • My 1980-Malice used to be so trendy. Everyone had one. Fortunately, I was able to exchange it for a 2021-Kindness. Who’d believe that a simple trade-in would make such a difference? My wife & my colleagues have noticed a huge change in my personality. I now routinely leave notes of encouragement for waiters & waitresses & even let people “cut-in” in front of me in the merge lane. I can’t even remember why I thought the Malice was such a cool car. - Bert in Beloit
  • I traded in my 1990-Slander for a brand new Praise at HMC. This new car is fantastic. I’ve been shocked to realize how differently people react to heartfelt compliments instead of snide complaints. It’s funny, the dealers were so happy to see me. They said they had been hoping I’d come in for some time. There is one quirk. You have to buckle the passenger seatbelt whenever you get in the car. It’s actually really nice, because it feels like someone is by your side all the time. It’s quite comforting when you are driving through a bad storm or feel a bit lost. - Adele in Admire
  • I can’t believe someone took my old 1970-Obscene off my hands & gave me a 2021-Clean. The interior is so nice. I’ve replaced words like anger, hate, & despise with joy, love, & respect in all my conversations, emails, & social media posts. I asked the dealers what was the catch. They said if I’d just repaint, they’d take care of everything else for free. I cried tears of joy as I saw that old clunker in the rear-view mirror as I pulled out of the lot. - Melvin in McPherson
  • Holy Motors is amazing. They have a toll-free number available 24/7 – you can call on them anytime & they will eagerly trade-in your old heap - sight unseen. They love new customers & encourage referrals. I can’t wait to tell all my friends. – Wilbur in West Mineral

I’ll definitely check Holy Motors out. Hey, here’s another car for sale by owner – a 1973 Ford Pinto – “perfect for that open-flame-barbeque while tailgating at Arrowhead.” Huh. I wonder what they are asking for it.

The Pinto of the 1970’s developed a reputation for exploding when rear-ended, hence Darren’s attempt at humor. – Editor.

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