And above all these things put on charity; which is the bond of perfectness (Colossians 3:14).
Our lesson begins with a vivid negative: “Mortify” [from Latin for death, hence mortician, mortuary, etc.]. Its meaning here is to deaden, put to death. This is how we Christians are to treat our basic natural passions and motives. “Put to death . . . sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires, and greed, which is idolatry” [NIV]. Slaughter everything in your life which is contrary to God and holiness. Otherwise they will more and more oppose you, defeat you and negate your Christian testimony and influence.
God gave strong and startling examples of this in the Old Testament. God commanded Israel, liberated from bondage in Egypt and now entering the long-awaited promised land, to put to death all the original inhabitants of Canaan. Any of these who were allowed to live would be perpetual enemies and sources of defeat and misery to God’s people. So it later proved to be.
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