Reflections: This section of Paul’s epistle to the church at Ephesus is a command to the believers to put off their old nature and put on a new self. Implicit in Paul’s language is the active verb “put off.” This is a natural analogy or image used in places like the Old testament or Greek literature, demonstrating the task of putting off an old way of thinking or behaving. For Paul, there is a call for active transformation – a setting of the gaze – that functions as a renewing of the mind. Not only this, but Paul’s language here is denoting a new creature, a New Creation, with an entirely new purpose, goals and functions. This is outworked in union with the Spirit, as well as our own act of putting off and putting on the new nature and identity found in Christ. It is not enough to cease disobeying the things of God, we must exchange these ways with new ones.
Question: What ways of thinking or behaviours do you need to “put off” and what aspects of new creation do you need to “put on?”
Prayer: Heavenly Father I ask that you help me understand your ways, and by the by the power of your Spirit I might know the things I need to lay down, shrug off my shoulders, letting them fall away. Show me, Holy Spirit, the things of God, the new ways of the New Creation that I am in you. Amen.