Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Feast of the Resurrection Year A - Colossians 3:1-11

Colossians 3:1-4
Paul’s resurrection perspective “if you have been raised with Christ” might be better understood as “since” you have been raised…” Of course the laundry list of behaviors and attitudes to be put to death reads like the “Thou shall not” that the law demanded but could not accomplish (even with the threat of God’s wrath raining down on the disobedient) but I think that misses the point of these passages. Being raised with Christ is a done deal. “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in (Jesus), and through him to be reconciled to all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” (Colossians 1:19, 20) In the new reality of the resurrection all the old ways of being have no place. Even the divisions of race and creed and culture have been erased. That’s because the earthly ways all hearken back to the disobedience in the garden where wanting to be “like” God meant we became less than human.  Dwelling on earthly things that have been put to death is like trying to live life in the grave which makes no sense. But since we have been raised with Christ our humanity has been restored and getting rid of earthly things is not a way to escape wrath but the only way to embrace grace and therefore not a measure of self discipline but the exercise of true freedom.

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