Thursday, January 4, 2018

Clothed With Christ



God's Servants Lovingly Submit to Established Authority (Romans 3:1-7)
We live in a world with no real sense of right or wrong.  Everyone wants to do what "feels good" and very few people want to submit to authority.  We push our own lifestyle, our own agenda and our own rights.  Paul addresses similar issues with the Romans and there appears to be very little differences between us. The interesting thing about Paul, is that he doesn't leave much room for personal opinion here.  Check out Romans 13:1, "Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God."  

It's hard for some individuals to believe that all authority is established by God.  Many people want to believe that God has abdicated his earthly authority and has left us to our own demise.  Obviously, scripture doesn't support this teaching and if it did, God would have ceased being God and He would no longer be seated on His throne.  But we know that God is seated on His throne and that He is in complete control and establishes authority.  (Romans 13:1)
It is good for us to get used to the idea of earthly authority.  Whenever we can submit to the authority over us, we ready ourselves to submit to God.  God instituted authority for our good (Romans 13:2).  God wants us to uphold the law, not only out of fear of consequence but because we have the right frame of mind. (Romans 13:5).  
  • How could you do a better job of lovingly submitting to your authority?
  • What are some ways you can teach your children that authority is in place for their good?

God's Servants Lovingly Uphold the Law (Romans 3:8-14)
God's wants our only debt in this world to be love. (Romans 13:8) He wants us loving those around us.  This isn't a hold hands and sing around a bonfire kind of love.  This is a love that says: "You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,”and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Romans 13:9)  

Paul reminds the Romans that God is returning quickly and that they need to be about the business of living godly lives.  He encourages them to honor God with their entire personality by yielding to God and His law. (Romans 13:13) Not only a yielding to the law, but an entire covering or clothing of Christ Jesus over their lives.  I love the imagery in this verse, Romans 13:14, "Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature."  What a beautiful picture of what Christ does for the believer.  Whenever Christ covers the believer, the believer takes on Christ's nature and begins acting out of love.

  • Have you come to a point in your life where you have asked Jesus Christ to "clothe you" by becoming Lord of your life?
  • If so, what are some tangible things you can do to continue "clothing yourself" with Christ?

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