Put Your Clothes On!

Colossians 3:9-10,  “(9) Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices  (10)  and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”
So what does it mean to “put on the new self?”  According to The Life Application Study Bible,
“…conduct should match your faith.  If you are a Christian, you should act like it.  To be a Christian means more than just making good resolutions and having good intentions; it means taking the right actions.  This is a straightforward step that is as simple as putting on your clothes.”[1]
As it can be noted from the interpretation above, the idea of putting on the new self is something that we need to do.  The interpretation above sees putting on the clothes as an act of conduct, an act of taking right actions, acts of determined sanctification.  However, is this what Paul is saying? 
The first thing that one needs to note is that Colossians chapter 3 occurs after Colossians 1-3.  Chapters 1-3 are considered the doctrine section of Colossians where Paul talks about the glory, majesty and power of Christ.  Chapters 1-3 also talk about how we have been made alive in Christ, and how we will not be disqualified when we don't follow religious expectations of ceremonialism and extreme asceticism.  It is then in this context of who we are in Christ that we are commissioned to put off the old self and put on the new self.  Furthermore, an incredible point to consider is that the virtues that we are called to put on in verse 10 are not virtues that we need to actively acquire.  Instead they are virtues that are provided by God as gifts.  They are Christ's virtues!  Because we are God's chosen people, holy and beloved... we get to put on the virtues of Christ!  We receive them as a gift.[2]

[1] Beers, 2106.
[2] Engelbrecht, 2047.  Note verses 3:12-15


Anonymous said…
If putting on a new self is compared to putting on new clothes and ridding of the old, is it a correct assumption that the "new clothes" can become threadbare and worn? Needing patches or renewal? This would not diminish the gift He has given me because I have not dressed myself in my old clothes however they need to be repaired. Or will the new clothes last forever and nothing more is ever needed?