Since nothing such as legalism or a higher knowledge can bring salvation, Paul upholds Jesus Christ alone as the way to salvation and sanctification. He begins Colossians 3 by saying “if then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.” When Paul says “you were raised” he means that “because of their union with Christ, believers spiritually entered His death and resurrection at the moment of their conversion and have been and are now alive in Him so as to understand spiritual truths, realities, blessings, and the will of God.” (MacArthur Study Bible notes on Colossians 3:1) Instead of being consumed with earthly wisdom and a man-made system of legalism, we should be consumed with God’s truths, which are revealed in Scripture (3:2). It is very easy for a believer to slip into the old life when their focus is not right. Paul mentions that believers should “put to death” the old nature and he even goes on to list many sins which can sneek into our lives (3:5, 8). Keep in mind that sin is the reason why God had to send His only Son to die and continuing in sin is a failure to receive God’s forgiveness and grow in Him (3:6-7). We should “put off the old man with his deeds and…put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him.” Yes, believers will still sin but we should make every effort through the power of Christ to abandon the old life. Spending time in God’s word, submission in prayer, and fellowship with other believers will challenge us to live in the new man.
Dear God, help me to put off the ways of the old man and boldly live in the new man.