The first lesson I was going to teach was on COL 3:1,2 Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.2 Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. Can you possibly imagine how incredibly effective a Christian could be if he or she had 100% of their hearts and minds focused on things above. As we are working in our lesson I read a comment of the author. He said, "Col 3:1 includes all Christians who are professing members of the Lord's church."
I am not in agreement with that thought. just because someone is "professing" to be a Christian doesn't make them a Christian. In no way, shape, or form does professing mean a person is being obedient to the Gospel. Think about it, many people today "profess" Christianity on Sunday morning and then leave God and his word at the door as they leave. Many people "profess" Christianity and quote scripture that doesn't even exist. Like the ever popular scripture "God helps those who helps themselves!" That may sound biblical but it isn't in the Bible. If people in your life don't know you are a Christian without you telling them you probably aren't a Christian. Consider,
JN 13:34,35 “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 “ By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” We need to let our actions speak and not just our tongues. Have you ever heard the expression, "Actions speak louder than words"? Also consider what John says, "1JN 3:18 Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth."
It is abundantly clear that "professing" Christianity is not the same as "practicing" Christianity. Col 3:1 is dealing with those who are in Christ. Those who have been buried and raised again with him in that watery grave. Consider, RO 6:3,4 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death?4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life
This raises the question, "How does one die with Christ in Baptism?" I want to give two reasons. First, the firm resolution and intention of renouncing sin forever (this is the spiritual aspect of it), very appropriately referred to as "dying with Christ", since as far as the Christian is concerned, his body is no more to be given over to the indulgence of fleshy lusts and sins, any more than if he had physically died. Secondly, the legal aspect of dying in the person of Christ. Christ died on Calvary; therefore, all who are in Christ are also said to have died "in him." Every Christian can say, "The penalty of sin, which is death; has been paid for. Christ died on the cross in my place and he is my Savior and my Redeemer!"
That is why I struggle the thought concept of those who are "professing" with out "practicing" Christianity are included in Col 3:1. Many people today claim to be Christians, yet they ignore his command of Baptism or they refuse to take part in the lord's Supper. The Lord's Supper is to remind us of what our Savior did for us on Calvary. Why wouldn't someone want a reminder of that accomplishment? People will not accept these doctrines but want to claim his name and have the salvation Christ has to offer!
Have a red letter day!