In our text the Bible describes what God expects of the believer in response to what He has done for us by His Amazing Grace. Because God has made us righteous in Christ, He expects us to live righteously or with right behavior. Such behavior is the outward manifestation of the inward transformation, and the only sure proof that such inner transformation has taken place.
The emphasis of this scripture is on inner motives of the heart. Why should we put off the old deeds and put on the qualities of the new life in Christ?
There are motives explained that ought to encourage us to walk in newness of life. For if we receive the grace needed to walk in newness of life, Christ will transform our heart. Three evidences of walking in the new life of Christ are: a Virtuous Heart, a Peaceful Heart, and a Grateful Heart.
The verses that we are going to examine talk about what it means to have a heart filled with grace. They tell us where a heart filled with grace, a thankful heart, comes from, what it can accomplish in us personally, and what it can accomplish for the kingdom of God.
As we deal with these verses, ask yourself, “Self, am I controlled by a heart filled with grace, a thankful heart?” If so, have I told anybody about my thankfulness lately?” By the time we get done, I hope that our motivation for having a heart filled with grace will have been increased to the point that we will make it the predominant pattern in our life, having a virtuous, peaceful and grateful heart.
In verses 8-9 Paul listed six vices (anger, rage, malice, slander, filthy language, and lying). Now in contrast to the fallen way of the old man, Christians are to display the virtues of the new man. Verse 12 announces what God’s grace desires to do in our heart. “So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;”
Those of us who have come to Christ are chosen by God. Christians as the chosen of God have the responsibility to live a godly life.
God has a plan for each person who responds to the initiative of His grace. God’s choice did not depend on anything that we have done. If God were to save man on the basis of merit, works or heritage, we would all be lost, no one would be saved. Salvation is by God’s unmerited grace through placing our faith in Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior.
Those chosen of God are holy and beloved in God’s eyes. Holy means “set apart,” or “separate,” (“separated to God”). We now are different from the world. Just as the marriage ceremony sets apart a man and woman for each other exclusively, so salvation sets the believer apart exclusively for Jesus Christ.
We’ll continue tomorrow.