January 30, 2010

A Brief Message

I'm not sure how a kid wouldn't notice this, but...

My wife called me at the office and told me that my five-year old son had something to tell me. She put Eric on the phone and he told me that he was at school when he discovered that he was wearing two pair of underwear. When he got himself dressed in the morning, he put a new pair of underwear on but forgot to take the old pair off.

People may wonder how many times we dropped him when he was a baby, but this will not stop me from using this in a sermon the first time I get a chance. Ephesians 4 and Colossians 3 tell us that the Christian life is about taking off the old and putting on the new. As Ephesians 4:22-24 says, “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” This should be our response to the free gift of salvation given to us through faith in Christ.

God doesn’t want spiritual nudists—who take off the old but do not replace it with new character. It’s not enough just to stop stealing; God wants us to work, doing something useful so that we can have something to share with those in need (Eph. 4:28). Don’t just stop being a drain on others, but be productive so you can help those in need. Don’t just take off unwholesome talk, but put on speech that builds up others according to their need (Eph. 4:29).

Don’t be a spiritual nudist, but don’t make the opposite mistake either. Don’t just add the good but fail to take off the bad. You may think it looks better on the outside, but it’s still disgusting.

I wish only five-year olds made this mistake.

Try to notice that you are still wearing your dirty underwear before you put the clean pair over them. Don’t just layer Jesus on top of your sin.

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