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What Are You Wearing?



What are you wearing? Perhaps that question is a bit odd even unexpected for the blog post. That question is not so concerned about the actual clothes you put on this morning; it’s intended purpose is to consider the importance and significance of our life and how we should live in light of the good news of Jesus Christ. Romans 13, as well as Colossians 3, illuminates to us two types of lives that are available to us today.  Notice what Paul states in Romans 13:11-12.


Romans 13:11-12 - 11 And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. (emphasis added)


The two types of lives that are available for us today describes as: 1) deed of darkness, 2) armor of light. It goes without saying that our Lord has freely made available the armor of light and therefore desires for us to “put on” that armor. As believers in the gospel we have already put on Christ (Galatians 3:27); yet in Romans 13:12, Paul strongly encourages us to put on the armor of light and in Romans 13:14 he again encourages us to “put on Christ.” So, as ones who have already been clothed with Christ, we ought to continually put Him on as well.


When considering Galatians 3:27 and Romans 13:12 & 14 we see two wonderful truths laid out for us—truths that we are called to believe and live out today. Galatians 3 speaks of the truth that is already true of us due to our new identity or oneness with Jesus Christ. We can all this truth, “positional truth.” Nothing and no none can alter or remove that truth. However, in Romans 13:12 & 14 we encounter a “conditional truth.” It is conditional since it is a command or exhortation for us to obey. Our obedience is not guaranteed but certainly desired by the Lord.


The following statement attempts to express the two truths (both positional and conditional truths of Galatians 3:27 and Romans 13:12, 14): put on the character that reflects your new identity in Christ. Our character should reflect to our friends, colleagues, family, neighbors, teammates, etc., the One we are one with, namely Christ.


Have you ever thought about this? When we get up in the morning we put on clothes. And when we clothed ourselves we intend those clothes to cover us all day, wherever we go, whatever we might do, and with whomever we meet. This is the purpose of clothes. Paul’s point is that life as a Christian is the same. We are to be those who “put on” Jesus Christ, intending that He covers us all the time, intending that He fills our life, desires, actions, and words in all things, at all times.



Proper Motivation for putting on Christ


There are many motivations at our disposal—fear, comfort, guilt, love, shame, achievement, self-protection just to name a few. In Romans 13:11 we find God’s most often used form of motivation—His grace. It is a misunderstanding of the character of God to assume that He wants to “fear us into action.” From both the Old and New Testament, we see a clear picture of a God who desires to “grace us into action.” Let’s read Romans 13:11-12 again to see just one example.


Romans 13:11-12 - 11 And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. (emphasis added)


Our future salvation, our complete redemption (Romans 8:22-25) is the motivation that we have to “put on Christ.” God’s salvation, from first to last, is a freely given gift to us solely because of the costly death of Christ. We certainly do not deserve His gracious gift of salvation nor are we capable of achieving it through our efforts or devotion. God reminds us of our certain and guaranteed future redemption (the redemptions of our bodies) for the purpose of letting that gracious truth propel us forward to put on the character of Christ that reflects our new identity in Him.


To put it succinctly: our promised salvation is coming, so let us put on the character of Christ. So today, with the life you have been given, in the situations and circumstances of that life and with all people, remember and believe these two truths: 1) Remember where you are heading—eternal presence with God, 2) Remember who you are—you are one with Christ. Therefore, you have a new identity in Him.


In our next blog entry we will attempt to answer the following questions: what is the “armor of light” and how do we “put on Christ?”


Remember where you are heading and who you are in Christ!

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