Friday, 12 May 2017
…and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, Colossians 3:10
Paul just stated that the believer has “put off the old man with his deeds.” Now in contrast to that, he says that we “have put on the new man.” Jesus uses the same Greek words when speaking of the new wine being put into old wineskins, and the new piece of cloth being sewn onto an old garment. The word for old is a chronological word indicating something ancient. The word for new likewise suggests “new in time.” It is something that is now revealed which didn’t appear before. In other words, we have had a complete break from what we were.
Such a person then “is renewed.” The word is actually in the present tense and is more accurately translated as “is being renewed.” This word, rather than being “new in time,” gives the sense of “new in quality.” We have been made new, and therefore we are to be renewed, improving from moment to moment. The state of this renewal is to be “in knowledge.” There is an object which we are to focus on, and we are to grow in quality towards the knowledge of that object.
Paul then tells us what that object is by saying this should take place “according to the image of Him who created” us. We are to strive to be improved, from one stage to the next, until we bear the image of Christ. As our knowledge of Christ is, at this time, to be found solely in the Scriptures, then it means that we are to study that marvelous body of writings in order to become more like Him.
It would make no sense to put off the old man, as he said we have done in the last verse, and then to remain ignorant of what our transformation into the new man means. If that were the case, we would actually remain in the state of whatever knowledge we possess. Without gaining knowledge of Christ Jesus we would, by default, be new men possessing only an old knowledge. Unfortunately, this is the state of a large portion of saved believers. They receive Christ and they stagnate. They remain carnal in their thinking despite having been regenerated in their spiritual selves.
Peter gives instructions in how to avoid this pitfall in 2 Peter 1:2-9. Try reading those verses today and reflect on how you too can avoid falling into the pit of forgetfulness, even to the point that you forget you have been saved in the first place.
Life application: Each of us is individually responsible for his own walk in the Lord. Are we going to move forward, seeking to know Him more and more each day? Or, are we going to stagnate and face life’s trials with all of the uncertainties that the unregenerate world faces? Let us endeavor to live for the Lord now, grow in Him daily, and be pleasing to Him when we stand before Him at the judgment seat of Christ.
Lord God, for those who have called on Christ, we have been given a new nature, youthful in regards to what we once were. Now help us to use that new vigor to renew ourselves into a higher quality of life, from stage to stage growing in a greater knowledge of You. And as this is the purpose of giving us Your wonderful word, help us to study it and apply its precepts to our lives. And thank You for being with us in the process. Amen.