J. Gordon Duncan

Culture, Business, Fitness, Etc.

Putting on Christ Part 3 of 3

Part One of this post can be found here. Part Two of this post can be found here.

Our only hope is of course Jesus Christ and the Gospel.  Listen to verse 14.

14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.

Folks, putting on Jesus Christ and making no provision for the flesh are inseparable.  You will not do one without the other.  Since putting on Christ is so essential, let’s clarify a few things.  The putting on of Christ is not speaking of salvation.  We saw a minute ago that salvation is brought by Jesus Christ.  Our salvation is Jesus’ possession.  No, the putting on of Christ uses the same imagery of putting on your clothes.  In fact, some translators write this verse as “Clothe yourself with Christ.”

It is the same idea used in I Peter 5:5-8 Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”  6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, 7 casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 8 Be sober-minded; be watchful.

Do you notice the similarities between the I Peter passage and Romans 13?  Clothing yourself with Jesus and righteousness shows a vigilance for the present time with a look to the future.

The proper question is to ask, “How exactly do I put on Christ?  Well, what have we been called to in these verse?  Love in verses 8-10 and Holiness in verses 10-13.  The work of Jesus Christ of course clothes you with both the love of God and the Holiness of Jesus Christ.  Learning to walk in those garments is the hard part in this life.

  • The putting on of Christ is not an exertion of the will but it involves that.
  • The putting on of Christ is not being self-disciplined but it involves that.
  • The putting on of Christ is the daily act of finding your ever need met in Jesus Christ and His incredible sufficiency.
  • The putting on of Christ is the daily act of finding yourself unwise and God only wise.
  • The putting on of Christ is the daily act of finding guidance not in the counsel of others or your self but in the counsel of scriptures.
  • The putting on of Christ is the daily act of finding your hope not in yourself or in your own efforts but in the efforts of Christ.

In doing that, then and only then can we make no provision for the flesh and obey the commands that we have seen in this passage.  John Piper explains this extremely well:  The word “provision” means literally “forethought,” and the whole sentence would go like this: “Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and don’t let any thought in your head that would lead to a sinful desire—not just to the gratification of the sinful desire, but even the desire itself.”  Paul is warning you and me against even thinking about of sinning.

You know the word here for provision only appears elsewhere in the NT in Acts 24:2, and is translated as “providence.” So there is providential forethought, if you daily put on Christ in your thoughts by meditating on Him in prayer and study, you will not then be making plans to sin.  You won’t leave the door open to sin.  You will see your life transformed as you clothe yourself with Christ.

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February 15, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , ,

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