Thursday, December 26, 2013

New Clothes

Ephesians 4:17  Now this I affirm and insist on in the Lord: you must no longer live as the Gentiles live, in the futility of their minds. 18  They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of their ignorance and hardness of heart. 19  They have lost all sensitivity and have abandoned themselves to licentiousness, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20  That is not the way you learned Christ! 21  For surely you have heard about him and were taught in him, as truth is in Jesus. 22  You were taught to put away your former way of life, your old self, corrupt and deluded by its lusts, 23  and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24  and to clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. 25  So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbors, for we are members of one another. 26  Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27  and do not make room for the devil. 28  Thieves must give up stealing; rather let them labor and work honestly with their own hands, so as to have something to share with the needy. 29  Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. 30  And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. 31  Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, 32  and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.

Gold, sequins and shimmer: Perfect party dresses for Christmas “.  Christmas is the time when many, many people will step out in fine clothes to celebrate. Paul adapts this idea to speak of the spiritual values connected to Christmas: he invites his readers to take off the old corrupt self and instead to “clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”


The best tribute we can pay Jesus is to practice the values of Christmas 365 days of the year.

5. All things New
The Scripture passage for the day is drawn from Reuben Job and Norman Shawchuck, A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and other Servants, (Nashville, The Upper Room 1983), 39.
This reflection is from my own devotional exercises for the day.    

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