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Daily Devotional Colossians 3:1–11

The other day during a conversation with one of my grown sons, I noticed a familiar facial expression and gesture. It was a bit like looking in a mirror. How did he learn it? Was it DNA or imitation? Perhaps it was a little of both.

Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.


Living the Christian life is similar in one respect. There is a place for imitating Christ, but it is ultimately grounded in something much deeper. Christian living involves three important actions that are noted in Colossians 3: seeking, being, and doing.

In verse 1, Paul urges us to “set your heart on things above.” The Greek word means to “seek.” It is referring to our aspiration and pursuit, but it is not “pie in the sky.” This seeking is only possible because the Christian has been united with Christ in His death and resurrection (vv. 1, 3). Being and seeking lead to doing. The Christian seeks the things above by living in the power of the cross. We put to death “whatever belongs to your earthly nature” by saying no to those sinful impulses that were part of our former life (v. 5).

Our earthly nature, as Paul describes these sinful impulses, continues to assert itself even after we have been saved. Paul describes it almost as if it were an alien force. It may stir within us, but it is not who we are in Christ. Paul calls the Colossians (and us) to cast off the vestiges of the old self and walk in the new self (vv. 7–10). The change in life that Paul envisions for the Christian is not instantaneous. We are “being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” (v. 10). The Greek verb is in the present tense. Our new life in Christ is a continuous and transforming experience.

>> Christians do not walk a certain way so that we can obtain new life. That life is already yours if you are in Christ! Now, what we need to do, is walk in it.

Pray with Us

Knowing we are already forgiven, we ask You for the strength and discipline to say no to our sins, especially those that have become ingrained. Help us choose the righteous path over the easy path.

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