Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Salvation is by grace through faith in Christ alone. It is not from our works, not in any way. We want to be sure we make no mistake in that regard. The good works of the Christian are completely irrelevant to being a redeemed person. Yet that is not the end of the story.
Colossians 3:1-11 calls Christians to live as Christians. This means we seek the things of God (v. 1). We live out our days practicing for the life of the world to come. Our practice doesn’t earn anything, but it finds the peace and rest of God, at least as a foretaste, on this earth.
What does that daily walk look like? Verses 5 and 8-9 list some specific habits we are to put to death, practices that provoke God to anger. It’s a “sin list,” not comprehensive, but it gives the idea that we are to put away behaviors that are harmful to others and to society as a whole. As the British might say, “that’s enough to be getting on with for now.” Work on those and we can deal with others later.
Recent political and cultural discourse has sometimes featured angry voices, complaining that social stands which agree with religious values must be abandoned, as they are rooted in some sort of religious intolerance. I merely observe that the vast majority of this list is impossible to legislate. The rejection of lying and slander does, in certain settings, have the force of law. There are ractices we can affirm as social goods and also recognize as religious values with no conflict. The Christian individual tries to do what is good in the world, with or without the compulsion of law. God’s desire for good should be enough motivation.
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