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Here's How to Get Dressed, Part 3

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
November 6, 2020 7:05 am

Here's How to Get Dressed, Part 3

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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November 6, 2020 7:05 am

Becoming a People of Grace: An Exposition of Ephesians

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Most of us can easily recall the mistakes of our habits of our former lives and get us Christians were redeemed by God. Those regrettable foibles have been cast away and no longer define us.

Unless of course we continue to rehearse their memory and carry the shame today on Insight for living. Chuck Swindoll teaches from Ephesians chapter 4 where Paul wrote in reference to your former manner of life lay aside the old self, put on the new self check title. Today's message here's how to get dressed, dark in mind is the mind that exists apart from the light in the knowledge of God. This is not about the loss of intelligence in the sense of sheer technical academic intelligence. It is the loss of spiritual perception which explains how a person can be greatly intelligent and even sophisticated in technical knowledge and be absolutely at a loss totally ignorant of spiritual things. Ray Steadman writes we. Why are we human beings ignorant because there is a part of our being that does not function our spiritual life. The human spirit is blank darkened and obscured in our natural state apart from God.

There is a part of our being. The part that God intended at creation to be the key to life for nothing takes place.

The spirit of humanity lost in sin is dead as a result, all human knowledge is broken, unrelated, incomplete, that is the picture Paul draws then the ads we tend to take pride in our great civilization with its accomplishments, knowledge and technological wonders, but we have to ask ourselves what has this fall. Vaunted civilization really done for us.

Do we feel safe on our streets at night we solve the problems of crime, political corruption, racism, immorality, and war.

Are we any happier as a society than the ancient Egyptians are the ancient Greeks.

If so, why are so many of us going to psychiatrists taking drugs, getting drunk, getting divorced, battering spouses and children and committing suicide for all these problems rising instead of declining great question is because there is a hardness of heart and darkness of mind which leads to an deadliness of life. Verse 19 is vivid and they having become callous, there is the word have given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity, with greediness, greediness, more, more, it's never enough that which drives the pornographer is the insatiable habit of those with a hunger for pornography, never being quite satisfied the greed goes deeper. The boredom gets sooner and there has to be something more, until finally there is such a recklessness of life. There is an absent shame. Few people put it better than Kent Hughes and one statement in this book.

Our culture is hell-bent in its cavalier reckless pursuit of sin. It makes psychopaths gets martyrs and drag queens its model. Paul portrays these horrible sites and rights of such he saw hearts that were so hardened. They weren't even aware they were sending he saw mine so blinded by sin. But shame was lost, indecency forgotten he saw more also debauched and at the reckless mercy of their own desires, they did not care whose life they injured or whose innocence they destroyed and remember, you have the same nature within you that have within them, but you verse 20 "I don't know if you go to a basketball game lately but one of the things it's more popular to do nowadays especially with umpires when they make a phone call is half the crowd goes you you you you you know I mean it's just like coming out all over you. Inside these closed arenas. This is sort of the way it is in verse 20 but you you there. Do you believe are you a child of God. In Ephesus you you did not learn Christ in this way you know what that means you come to the cross. He walked from that unregenerate life into the resplendent light and presence of Christ and you. You've seen what it means to be cleansed from within. So that converted you now are able to put on or having put on the new garments you're able to walk a new kind of life I love this word picture gives us a strong contrast. You have not.

So learn Christ. In fact, the way he goes after this almost sounds like the catechism of the school. Verse 21.

If indeed you have heard him Christ speaking and have been taught in him, just as truth is in Jesus. I love that weight. The way that we know if you have been exposed to this kind of Christ of focused teaching maybe a Bible study Fellowship or through campus Crusade for Christ or perhaps a home Bible class or a group of you friends got together. Maybe some of you at work and you came together and without concern for denominational religious background. All of you together converted focusing on Christ began to be part of him.

He not only was the subject of the teaching he was, if you will, the teacher, and it's so overwhelmed you that you were lost in the wonder of his person, and it began to seep deep into your wants hardened heart and darkened mind began to change. I came across 1/5 century monk named St. Patrick who wrote words I would love to teach my grandchildren this summer. Listen to this Christ be with me Christ within me. Christ behind me Christ before me.

Christ beside me Christ win me Christ to comfort and restore me Christ beneath me. Christ above me Christ and quiet Christ in danger Christ and hearts of all that love me, Christ and mouth.

A friend constrictor be a great way to go to bed every night.

Christ.

Christ. Christ.

Christ, as it begins to take over your life. You can't wait to shed the garments and to get dressed right that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind. Look at verse 23. This is the shower. This is the part that comes between the old and the new garment you are renewed in the spirit of your mind, what is that mean well I think it starts with realizing the old self is corrupt and powerfully deceitful. I tell myself that on a somewhat regular basis. This harks back to Romans 12 to figure not conformed to this world but you are renewed in the spirit of your mind so that you discover that your spiritual service of worship is the least expression of the sacrifice you could make a living sacrifice and the renewing of your mind.

III begin my day by realizing that the old self is corrupt and will never be less than corrupt, and it is deceitfully appealing a second. It continues with frequent reminders that the new self is Christlike and wholly satisfying and this needs to be done daily.

This is not a once for all experienced this is Dave now having said all of that. I probably need to tell you. I understand what it is to be attached to the old things get a little intense here.

So let's lighten up and let me tell you I know what's hanging in your closet and what's in your bureau drawer because even though you've never been there but you know what are in mine. We have old clothes. Okay, we prefer the old close. We've all got old T-shirts, that our wives have begged us to get rid of fact, one of the first thoughts of the possibility of a divorce was when she took it and tried to throw it away and you rescued it, and then finding the hole to put your arm through you got back into the outfit, having several other holes to choose from and you got these great old sneakers and you've got these old pants. Usually with elastic waist people of you like to just hang out in a minute when nobody is around. That's what where why there's so comfortable they got history.

Some of them have some of them have a smell of history about amended amended use is so relaxing you hope nobody from the church, shows up to see you like this and ended. Finally, you keep going back and hanging on to the clothing and that teaches me that the old nature is a lot like that. The old nature is not some snarling beast. The times and ripped and Karen raped his way through the house and not like that is fun to be with comfortable Scott history you and he lived together longer. Quite possibly then you've lived with Christ in moments of weakness you love to fall back into those "and where and hang on to.

But you have not.

So learn Christ not asking you to do something easy. I'm asking you to do something that's transforming. You see, otherwise you will continue to rely on lying rather than telling the truth is so much more comfortable doing that you continue to lust after her or him because it's an old habit and is a little exhilarating to lot satisfying.

You continue to manipulate and take charge and be in control and and get your way selfishly pulled it off because it's the old garment, but you have not.

So learn Christ by the renewing of the spirit of your mind. He says put on the new self and what is it, it is in the likeness of God, which has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth, you can't beat that. Go through this kind of thing and make it happen. Will the answer is in verse 23.

It's in the renewing of the mind.

It's in the attitude we have toward it that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind is so that they the new garments have a greater appeal than the satisfaction of the old remember the old offer deceitful lusts to the end of verse 22. Corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit. That's why I tried to picture those things is not being like beasts, but deceptively appealing, deceitful lusts rights one man. These may include sex urges, of course, but they really referred to desires to acquire as well.

The urge to use others for our own advantage. The urge to hurt people through backbiting and gossip. The lust for power and fame. The urge to attain mastery and status in the political or the business or the church world the urge to criticize and blame others.

The urge to indulge in self-pity or explode in anger or impatience with other to react defensively and embrace simply when things don't go our way.

That's the deceitful urges of the old garment put them aside by the renewing of your mind, put on the new. The renewal of the mind is like to clean fresh water of the show I mentioned when I first came to seminary I I didn't know very much about preaching and when you're first at the school you you try to find places that will listen to and one of I found a number they just didn't know better. One was I would do funerals for people I'd never met so they needed someone to preach and not preach to an empty funeral home and a dead person as I would learn how to do this and then they trusted me to preach to a fraternity at a campus and then to a free-speech platform. I remember doing that was sweet Anderson up in Oklahoma. They throw things out as they would, but was in the 60s. One man member Churchill's words, nothing in life is more exhilarating than being shot at without result. And the things slung in our direction and what you learn to preach just to survive. One of the places I preached was the was the downtown Dallas. They called it the rescue mission. Interesting place and in some rescue missions and I preached in many of them there. They have a special room where these derelicts are brought and they discard their their filthy garments and they literally are delousing and then they are put through a shower and a bath so as to be completely cleaned up and then given fresh garments not necessarily new, but new to them.

If it's a cold bite a nice coat, but the changing of the garments take place only after they have gone through the delousing room will that's the cross.

That's the cross, you come with your old garments filthy that they are and you stand before him and you ship them and nothing in your hands. You bring simply to the cross you cling and you place yourself before the living holy all pure all clean God, and you claim his forgiveness and the sacrifice of Christ death on your behalf having shed the old garments you are fitted with new ones where that where that to go back to the old is as foolish as the old drunk coming back in the next day and asking for his dirty clothes that he shed the night before because when you wear the new ones you are wearing garments that have been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. I like it that the places are called rescue missions is not good. The cross is all about rescuing us.

Unfortunately in our day when we can dress to fit whatever occasion the dress of our Sunday attire can easily cover up the true condition of our filthy garments within it's wonderful to meet at the same level at the foot of the cross and to find cleansing and forgiveness is you bow your heads, please. Just close your eyes. You sure you made that journey don't don't tell me about your being christened as a baby don't know tell me about when you were baptized. Talk about churches you've attended in preachers you listen to.

I'm asking about the cross, you sure about that. You absolutely positive that you have been given the capacity to wear her new clothing not if there's never been a conversion listen to the inner voice of your heart right now is listen.

Do you have the assurance of the voice of Christ that he has come to reside, to live, to help you change close to clean you up is not the assurance. This is a wonderful time to get the insurance we deliberately do not hurry this moment. This is perhaps the most important moment of the day, certainly at this hour Christ be with me Christ within me.

Christ behind me Christ before me.

Christ beside me Christ to win me Christ to comfort and restore me Christ beneath me. Christ above me Christ in quiet Christ in danger Christ and hearts of all that love me Christ in mouth, a friend and stranger wonderful hope. There is, instead of hardness and darkness and deadness and recklessness can be cleansing and holiness. It starts at the cross. Thank you father for your grace, meeting us where we are giving us what we didn't earn her could never deserve making it impossible for us to pay you back, but coming by faith alone to Christ alone. We have found the cleansing we so needed. Back in the days of unbreakable habits, irredeemable desires, ugly actions and shameless deeds. Thank you for your grace I pray for all who hear these words today wherever they may be.

Whatever may be going on in their lives. Pray that you will stop them and bring them to the room over the old garments can be cast aside for can be cleansing and renewal and a reason to go on the Christ can take the place of self and joy replace the emptiness and loneliness of a life committed to reckless debauchery. Thank you. Today father for those who have not come to Christ strengthened them in the beginning of their walk with you and cause this passage to remind us of how to get dressed every morning and how to pay attention to the things that matter most.

That which is within, rather than that which is without and now want to him who is able to guard us from stumbling and present is faultless but for the presence of his glory with exceeding joy to the only wise God our Savior be glory and majesty, dominion and power. Now and forever more. Through Christ our Redeemer.

We pray in everyone's a man of Chuck Swindoll's closing prayer, we conclude this study in Ephesians 4, titled here's how to get dressed and this is insight for living.

To learn more about this ministry. Visit us online@insightworld.org now to give you some context.

This program features just one slice of a much larger series. It's a verse by verse study through Paul's letter to the Ephesians series is titled becoming a people of grace just before we sign off all of us at Insight for living or praying this study in Ephesians inspires you to become an agent of God's grace in the world craving to feel a touch of his kindness 2020 will go down in history as a year filled with uncertainty, fear, and even hostility because Jesus is broken all barriers through his sacrificial death on the cross.

It's all the more reason to become a people of grace. In that spirit, we are inviting you to join us in taking God's message of grace all across the country and even around the world vision 195. The majority of your gift is applied right here in North America you hear Chuck's teaching and then a small amount is all that's needed to carry insight for living beyond our borders to give a one time donation colors your listening in the United States dial 1-800-772-8888 or go online to insight.org and today we're calling your attention to a wonderful resource designed to keep you in God's word.

Throughout the new year. Chuck Swindoll wrote a devotional called good morning Lord. Can we talk this is the perfect tool for staying on track 2021 lay aside the old self and put on the new self every single day suitable gift for Christmas as well to purchase good morning Lord, and other helpful resources go to insight.org/store. It's almost impossible to escape the pervasive news these days is everywhere and most of us are creating a break from the TV and a reprise from the images of rage disease, civil unrest in this volatile season insight for living ministries is continued to serve as a safe harbor where good news is celebrating many tell us that the Bible teaching from Chuck Swindoll provides a refreshing getaway chaos and confusion of our times with these daily visits with Chuck are made possible in part by monthly companions are inviting you to join this influential team monthly supporters signed up today by calling us your listening in the United States dial 1-800-772-8888 in this hospital first world craving just one gentle but God's goodness respond are simple act of generosity will be friends and that irresistible sweet for someone decided return become a regular monthly calling listening in the United States dial 1-800-772-8888 or go online insight.org/month and join us again Monday, when Chuck Swindoll study called becoming a people of grace continues right here on insight for living. The preceding message.

Here's how to get dress was copyrighted in 2000 2001 and 2009 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2009 by Charles R. Swindoll.

All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited


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