It's Time to Part with Your Sin

Today we embark on week two in our series “Christ in the Common.” Already had interactions with many of you about these great truths and the call we received last week to treasure Christ above all else. To wait for his return, to seek the things above in our thought life and our pursuits.

This week we move to the next point Paul makes in this section on what it means to be a thriving Christian and it is that a Christians a one who mortifies sin. Men and women and boys and girls who love Jesus, kill sin.

I don’t know about you, but I find passages and messages on killing sin to be challenging. It is challenging on so many fronts. For starters it always exposes areas of immaturity in my faith. Then it confronts me with whether or not I actually want to stop sinning or not. And so this is a challenging message today to us from the Lord through Paul to the Colossians.

But can I also tell you—this is such beneficial truth. If you want to be a thriving Christian, then you must kill sin. If you want to experience abundant life in Christ, then heed this passage. It will contribute to your joy and your spiritual usefulness.

If you want to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord Jesus Christ to have influence and impact in the kingdom, then this is where it’s all at. Fundamentals. The basics. Christianity 101. Treasure Christ. Kill sin. Model Christ.

Romans 8:13—if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body you will live. That means that this is not an optional pursuit.

Whatever you have heard about a Spirit-filled, Spirit-led life, this is a Spirit-empowered life. It isn’t in your ability to hear from God special messages, or heal people, or sense special things in prayer. A person who is full of the Spirit is a person who experiences the victory over sin that God has promised. That is a Spirit-filled person.

You must be willing to make a violent divorce with your old life.

3 Characteristics of a Thriving Christian (Be Who You Are)

  1. One who treasures Christ above all else (1-4)
  2. One who mortifies sin upon seeing it for what it is (5-11)
  3. One who models Christ magnifying him on earth (12-17)

Colossians 3:1–17 (ESV)—1 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 

(5) Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 On account of these the wrath of God is coming. 7 In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. 8 But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. 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. 11 Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all. 

(12) Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

3 Characteristics of a Thriving Christian (Be Who You Are)

  1. One who treasures Christ above all else (1-4)

Let’s review for this section…

Your life is to be marked out as distinctly Christian, meaning that your life is about Christ. He is often on your lips and in your thoughts. You value his priorities and his plans. And although you carry out the tasks he has called you to here below, you live as one whose ultimate home is not here, but in heaven above.

What defines and consumes your driving focus and pursuit in this life? Do you seek first the kingdom of God? 

  1. One who mortifies sin upon seeing it for what it is (5-11)

We are going to spend the bulk of our time this morning on the specific matter of killing sin from the beginning of verse 5, and then the rest of the passage is going to flow naturally and rather quickly after we have established this point.

In light of all this heavenly mindedness…

(5) Put to death therefore what is earthly in you… 

To continue living in a friendly relationship with your sin is inappropriate for a believer. Put to death therefore… therefore in light of what? 

Therefore, since you belong to Christ. Therefore, since you have an inheritance in heaven and you are protected and safeguarded by Jesus. Therefore, since the old you was crucified with Christ and the old you no longer lives. Therefore, since you will see him again face-to-face, unexpectedly at any moment.

Paul’s point is that too much has changed to continue in the old ways.

You have a new destiny. You have new power. You are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). And yet there is this lingering problem. Is there a crystal-clear example of what it means to be made “new” and yet still have the “old?” Note: consider reading and rereading Romans 6-8, especially 6:11-13.

 And so now you walk in newness by killing the stuff from the old. 

The New American Standard here is a bit passive… it isn’t: consider it dead; that sounds very much G-rated. Like, act like its dead or something. 

But the verbal form here is a present, ACTIVE, imperative… best rendered by the English Standard Version: put it to death, kill it, or as the old English goes, mortify it.

Paul you just said, I died, and now you say kill my body parts. Am I dead? Or not dead? 

I find passages like this immensely helpful because they bring balance and provide us a clear theological perspective on the Christian life. You are dead positionally. That means that your flesh is no long in a place of authority in your life. It means that you have been set free from the condemnation of the law of God. 

And it means that you have the ability to walk in newness of life. 

And yet there are parts of you that are still operating according to the old system. That’s why Paul says upon the earth the parts of you that match the old life, not the new one. One of my mentors used to refer to this as the echo of the old man.

Think of it this way, when you come to Christ in salvation you instantly gain the ability to put to death sin. But the problem is, you’ve spent however long cultivating sinful patterns—you have entrenched thought patterns, entrenched ways of processing the world around you, entrenched habits, entrenched responses and beliefs. And so, change takes time.

You are now able to change by God’s power, but it isn’t instantaneous.

Allow me to illustrate. 6 years ago, I had my Achilles tendon lengthened and as soon as that took place my foot instantly gained a range of motion that it had never experienced before. As soon as I could take the boot off and put weight on that foot there was mobility that had previously not existed.

So, as you can imagine, all of a sudden, these 30-year old tendons that had been frozen in place start moving for the very first time. 

How do you think that felt? Kind of like crying. It was odd. I could rotate my foot in ways I had never been able to. But I couldn’t use my foot yet very effectively. It was difficult and painful; the surrounding tendons were weak. In fact, it took years for me to make full use of that new ability.

And so just like that ankle that suddenly gained range of motion you have to now make use and put to work that newly gained ability to walk in obedience.

Here in this text then is one of the new spiritual activities that we engage in. We become killers. Killers of our own sin. Killing means to act upon a living thing in such a way as to end its life. Death then is raw and violent. 

Paul doesn’t say merely to stop sinning, or distance yourself from sin, but take the spiritual resources you have been given in Christ and slay it in worship to God. There is an aggressiveness and a thoroughness here.

It means you don’t let up until the job is done.

I was thinking of a time when I was attempting to kill an animal and I wasn’t doing it very effectively. It was traumatic. I wanted to get the process over with for the animal’s sake and it was disturbing to me that it wasn’t immediate.

This is how killing sin is—a process that is difficult and is not immediate.

And at this point before we go any further in our explanation I would ask you this morning… what sin are you currently putting to death in your life? I was greatly challenged by this question a couple of weeks ago when I began preparing for this series.

I was challenged because I didn’t have a good answer. Sure, there are battles won in the rearview mirror. Seasons of intense focus on battling sin. But in integrity before the Lord—I’ve become complacent.

I don’t know about you, but I find it much easier to identify and even share with others about my sin than kill it. This text was a needed wakeup call for me personally as I came to it because killing sin isn’t something that we get to take breaks from. If Satan and your flesh and the world all agreed to take a timeout maybe that would be one thing. But none of that stops, so neither can we.

Are you killing sin? 

Putting to death sin involves…

  • A battle that takes time and effort
  • A seriousness and a hatred of your sin
  • A level of specificity that makes you uncomfortable—not “I’m sure I could do better…” not “well of course we all blow it sometimes…” no, self-indicting language that accepts the full weight of your culpability and doesn’t try to squirm out.

Don’t confuse seeing your sin or feeling bad about your sin with biblical change or killing your sin. Killing sin is Spirit-empowered obedience to start living in newness of life. Feeling bad about sin is not killing sin.

How do you know if you are mortifying? John Owen in his classic work, The Mortification of Sin gives three evidences that you are killing sin in your life:

  1. A habitual weakening of the sinful lust or desire.
  2. A constant fight and contention against sin.
  3. A degree of success in the battle.

Can you point to the evidence of these things? If not, perhaps you are not saved. If then by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the flesh you will live.

Paul is going to make this concrete by giving two lists, not comprehensive, but rather a list of the issues that were especially pertinent to those believers in Colossae. You could add to the list all kinds of things such as: laziness, selfishness, ingratitude, drunkenness, jealousy, strife, sorcery, disputes. Paul isn’t listing out every sin that could be listed here.

These are issues that the believers in Colossae had to deal with.

But here he begins with the issues of sex and selfishness. Two arenas the human heart seeks fulfillment and satisfaction in outside of God’s design. The serve as functional gods (i.e., idols).

(5) Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 

Earthly there is base. Whatever is still in your life today that is part of the old life, you need to kill.

Immorality: fornication=sexual activity outside of one man one woman in a marriage relationship. 1 Thessalonians 4:3—it is God’s will that you abstain from sexual immorality. People lament our culture today, as they should. But 21st century America hasn’t descended to the level of first-century Greek culture. 

It’s sickening to read the history of not only prostitution, but the widespread cultural acceptance of men keeping concubines (slaves with whom they would have sexual relations) or elicit affairs. Also included the practice of homosexuality, male relations were more common than lesbianism in that day. 

Option 1—single, conduct yourself in chastity and abstinence. 

Option 2—married, keep the marriage bed pure and your love reserved for one only. Any illicit sexual activity. Kill it. 

People who had come to Christ steeped in years of this practice. Put it to death. Whichever one of those two lanes you are in, leave behind your sin and stay in the lane.

Impurity is uncleanness; goes beyond the act and penetrates into the thoughts of the heart. Anything that lacks wholesome uprightness. Goes beyond the external act of inappropriate sexual activity. Anything that standing in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ would be shameful. Broad application with deep reaching implications. Everything from humor and joking to entertainment to thought life is to be clean. 

Obviously this would include any form of self-gratification, pornography, sexual thoughts and fantasies. Some might think they haven’t done the deed (whatever it is) but impurity here expands beyond the act to the thought-life.

Passion is just how it sounds. Emotional. Charged up. An attentiveness and energy to seek sexual pleasure outside of God-ordained boundaries.

Evil desires are the base desires for things such as food and sex. In this case it is self-serving desires that are contrary to God’s design.

Greed is a compound word πλεονεξία that means having more or wanting more. An appetite that consumes others for fulfilling a personal desire. Anything from money and a desire for more resources at the expense of withholding or mistreating someone else to gain them. It also pertains to competing with others for prominence. Outdoing, taking precedence or taking advantage of others.

which is idolatry… it’s a false god. It becomes an object lived for and desired above all else, but it amounts to nothing.

These believers were new in Christ, but habits long-established are difficult to part with. They had grown up with distorted, perverted views of religion and sexuality. These Gentiles were not brought up in Christian homes. 

They weren’t brought up in Jewish homes. Christianity was new for them. What a precious truth that must have been to them all the times Paul reminded them of their debt of sin being cancelled at the Christ and them being made new in Christ.

How are you tempted in these ways? And how are you fighting these sin battles?

How are you dealing with the many avenues of temptation for impurity? Perhaps it is click-bait (headlines designed to get clicks because it generates money), trafficking on websites that aren’t overtly evil but full of edgy or provocative headlines, reading lurid details in reviews or articles, perhaps out and about gazing around with your eyes hoping to stumble upon something, impurity in your mind by letting your imagination run riot, even an improper relationship that you won’t cut off, self-gratification, pornography. The opportunity for sin abounds, how vigilant are you in cutting off an opportunity for the flesh and killing sin.

Perhaps your issue is the backside of impurity. Maybe that first list isn’t a particular temptation for you, but you are deeply concerned about your physical appearance and spend a great deal of time thinking about how you look, what you will wear. You over spend time and energy and money desiring to be attractive to gain feelings of significance. 

Just run through a brief catalogue of your recent habits and ask yourself, is my conduct clean and pure and above reproach? For Colossae it would have been asking where have you been? Who have you been with? What have you been thinking about?

In our day, what is your internet search history, your archived text message conversations, your music playlist and your recent movie or show consumption, your social media posts. 

If we printed out the nameless results would it be obvious looking at these things: here is a person who has been bought by the blood of Jesus Christ? 

You know the biggest reason we have a hard time letting go of sin? We still cherish it. Killing something that it is very important to you is never going to happen.

Killing sin requires Spirit-enabled courage and a conviction that what God says about sin is true. I plead with you as I wrestled in my own soul this week to not be casual with your sin. To deal sin a lethal blow will only happen when you are convinced that God is true and you see him rightly. Surely the settled satisfaction of sin is lost for the believer, but you still love your sin.

Can I encourage you? You will never experience any true loss in the path of obedience. Loss of sin, yes. Loss of some pleasures, yes. But what God replaces it with is so much better. Obedience brings blessing.

If you are still walking in these sins, then I urge you—bring them into the light. Find someone who is trustworthy and more mature than you in the faith and get help as you pursue Christ together in these things.

If you haven’t battled sin biblically you need to be aware that it is not easy, but it is worth it. John Owen masterfully illustrates the process of mortifying sin by drawing on the imagery of crucifying the old man with its passions.

When a man is nailed to a cross, he at first struggles, strives and cries out with great strength and might; but as his blood and spirits waste, his strivings are faint and seldom, his cries low and hoarse, and scarce to be heard. So when a man first determines to conquer a lust or sin, and to deal with it in earnest, it struggles with great violence to break loose; it cries with earnestness and impatience to be satisfied and relieved. By mortification, the blood and spirits of it are let out, it moves seldom and faintly, cries sparingly, and is scarce heard in the heart; it may sometimes have a dying pang that makes an appearance of great vigor and strength, but it is quickly over, especially if it kept from considerable success.

Friends, let’s help each other in this battle to strengthen one another and pray for one another.

Well if we are troubleshooting, as I said earlier, one of the reasons we continue in sin is because we convince ourselves that our sin isn’t that bad. Sure, we have flaws and weaknesses, don’t we all? We all have areas we need to work on and grow in?

Part of wanting to kill sin is removing that shiny veneer that makes it seem not so bad. Paul goes on…

(6) On account of these the wrath of God is coming. 

It isn’t the only motivation, but the fact that sin makes God angry helps us to see it rightly. If you love God you love what he loves and hate what he hates. As we tell our little ones, God doesn’t think sin is funny—He killed Jesus because of your sin. 

Do you think Jesus views sin lightly as some minor thing to be ignored until it becomes a personal nuisance, or you get around to dealing with it?

As the Psalmist exclaimed in Psalm 119:128—I hate every false way (that’s part of being close to God). Casual about sin you are casual about God.

It grieves me to think about how flippant and dismissive I am about sin that matters so much to my God. When I think about why God hates my sin—because it personally offends him, and when I think about Jesus going through so much to save me from the wrath of God, it begins to take the flippancy and the fun and games out of sin.

God’s wrath is coming upon sin. And if you belong to Jesus, he saved you from the wrath of God.

Romans 5:9—Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.

And we not only look ahead, but we also look behind.

(7) In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. 

Remember what you used to be? Don’t look back on the old life and consider the sin as if you wish you had gone further or enjoyed it more. But remember what you have been pulled out of.

Paul says, you used to be there. Remember when you were walking and living in them. It was your pattern it was your lifestyle. Bible gives powerful imagery to describe life outside of Christ: the wicked concoct evil plans on their beds… drink iniquity… love sin and commit it and indulge in it.

It’s a precious thing when someone comes to Christ out of sin and instantly wants to be separated from it. There is such a zeal. They want to shed even the garment stained by sin. Get rid of the whole kit ‘n caboodle.

In that congregation men who had practiced adultery for years in the marriage context. Women who had never married and provided for their daily needs through prostitution, or were subjected to it. Men who had practiced homosexuality, and those who had engaged in elicit sexual relationships, what we would term today as casual hookups or promiscuity. And out of that mess of sin Jesus reached in and redeemed them.

Colossians 1:19–22—19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, 20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven. 21 And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, 22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach—

God loves this plan. And it is a good plan. And it a plan of redemption. You were living in sin, but wait… there’s more.

(8) But now 

Here’s a contrast. Now things are different than they were then.

There’s a new sheriff in town. New paradigm. New protocol. New approach. You may have been raised this way. You may have practiced it longer than you haven’t. You could have distorted views of all these things. But put it off now…

And so here’s the Christian life. Every Christian knows both of these realities: you have put off the flesh. Instantly changes took place the moment you were regenerated. And you still must continue to put off the flesh.

(8) But now you must put them all away:

Take it off… laid it down. Like dropping arms or taking off clothing. Drop it.

Take it off. Like removing dirty clothes and tossing them in the hamper, or throwing down your weaponry in surrender in a battle, so you shed sinful practices. What’s the point of that analogy? 

Let go of it. Say goodbye. Leave it all behind. The concept is easy to grasp. Perhaps the first list of items aren’t areas that are significant vulnerabilities for you. Now Paul moves into attitudes and conduct and speech.

anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another,

All outward symptoms of underlying idols in the heart. We will just make a few comments about each one of these to get a running description.

Anger: frustration, righteous indignation (we have a lot of righteous indignation in our house ;) grumpiness, touchiness, snappy, blow up type, slow burn, stew with the silent treatment or give a snide remark or a dirty look. Perhaps one of the most pervasive sins when I look at my own heart and consider the sins of the people of God. Sinful anger comes from not getting what you want. You may past the years of kicking and screaming and throwing your head back, but it is viewing your personal rights as being trampled upon. 

  1. James 1:19—This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger;

Wrath: rather than the occasional fruits of anger, this is an angry man or an angry woman. The outburst signify someone who exists in this pattern of irritability. They believe they are victims who exist in a world of people who exist to make their lives miserable.

Malice: badness or baseness. This is humanity at its worst really. This is a wickedness that is vicious. I was reading the Twitter feed recently of a man who I know who abandoned the faith. Entry after entry was venomous—it was belligerent, angry, degrading… more and more our culture is allowing that type of speech as being a virtue when it is speaking against a worse evil. Malice is a hateful attitude that is ruthless toward others. Titus 3:3—spent hating and being hated. 1 Peter 2:1—it chokes out your appetite for the Word of God when you have hatred toward your brother in your heart.

Sins of the tongue…

Slander: speaking against, railing against. Βλασφημία reviling…mocking or abusive speech. Talking down to someone in a condescending manner would be the tame side, verbal abuse on the other end. It would include defaming someone’s reputation or speaking of them in a degrading manner, and then finally reviling God. 

Do you go around speaking negatively of others? We can be subtle. Slander is rooted in an insecurity and desire for self-promotion. You like to represent others poorly because it puts you in a position of authority and removes facing your own issues. 

Doesn’t mean of course that may not need to discuss sin with someone to help. But this is mal-intentioned speech. Our speech is to protect one another. That’s what love does. It protects.

Obscene talk: dirty talking. Not just foul language, but crude joking. You can take whatever level of crudeness you are comfortable with and work backwards to a less pure heart. Why? Because whatever you are willing to say or laugh at or engage in publicly is tempered compared to what is in your heart. Dirty talking comes out of a dirty heart. If you enjoy crude speech then you have defilement in the heart.

Lying: All forms of lying. Half-truths. Deceitfulness. Covering sin. Hiding. Speaking the truth is costly, at least in the short-term. In the long-run of course there are great blessings. People lie because they gain something from it. 

You flatter to get an advantage. Paying compliments when it isn’t true or to endear yourself to someone when it isn’t genuine.

You cover sin to keep your reputation. You don’t own a mistake because it will cost you financially. In Corinth, Paul said you were liars—it is a defining characteristic of your life. Not so with God’s people. Proverbs on a wink and a nod. Serious sin with your children. Serious sin in the church. Earthly relationships are impossible to maintain with a liar—you must have truth.

Pastor how do I stop? Have you ever tried to stop being angry without utilizing God’s resources? Count to ten? Get a punching bag? Take a jog? 

You want to kill anger? You must get into the underlying issues in your heart. Anger is a symptom. It’s the rotten fruit. So, we try to get effective and plucking the fruit before it can mature. Wrong place to start.

You have to get into the soil and fertilize and kill the bugs and the disease and prune and water. Underlying beliefs, desires, and ways of focusing.

We don’t have time to go through all of these, but let’s take anger just for a moment. Angry people are proud people. Maybe that offended you just now (I would say case, and point). Angry people live in a world where they want to be God.

They define expectations and boundaries, what they view as good or bad for their lives. They don’t see themselves as living for God’s perfect plan in submission to him.

Convicted yet? What got into Paul that afternoon when he was writing this? Such rich instruction for us. Paul is a shepherd. He hasn’t met this flock face-to-face, but he has heard from Epaphras and he knows the human heart well and he writes so perceptively from that position.

seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, 

These precious saints were saved. They were born again. They were new creatures.

It’s possible to take the language here as instructive… certainly we do take off and put on (that’s in this very passage). But here the point seems to be not to do that, but rather to tell the truth because you have put away the old and put on the new. 

It isn’t appropriate anymore to walk in the darkness.

which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. 

This is  a little relative clause—a clause that clarifies and further defines the new self.

Praise God for this Gospel hope. I trust that God’s truth has gripped your heart to convince you of the urgency in killing your sin. Perhaps you became aware even during this message of areas of sin that you have failed to recognize, or more commonly reawakened to see freshly something that you have been aware of before. Whatever the case may be my dear brothers and sisters, take heart.

The new self. The new and improved you, if you will. That new you is a better you that is empowered by God to look like Him.

You know this is why I love to be a minister of the Gospel. I’m not a social worker encouraging you to form some better habits in your life. I hold before you the hope that God has given you every spiritual resource you need to walk in newness of life.

You made the new you? God did. Who is doing that daily renewing? God does. Day by day Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:16—my body is falling apart, but day by day my inner person is being strengthened, nourished, built up and gets stronger and stronger. You die when the body gives out and you are in your spiritual prime. That’s the concept.

What’s your job? Put it on. How? By believing God. Believe that these resources are yours. Believe that He is the one powerfully working in your to will and to work according to his good purposes. Believer that you have been freely given every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ believe that you are a new creature and now from that position of faith live like it!

Prevents you from discouragement. Have you wasted time not killing sin? Who among us hasn’t.

This is all about your identity in Christ. You say what do you mean? Look at the next verse. Paul hammers it hope that you are now Christ’s and that is a mega concept that you must get your mind around.

(11) Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.

In Colossae you had the wealthy and prominent, then the middle class, then the lower class (illiterate, poor). 

There is a great deal concerning classes of people. Jews believed Greeks were below them. Barbarians were a lower class of Greeks who were uncultured and untaught. Scythians were the lower class of barbarians. 

This new man is a recreation of the image of God that is marred by sin. It now defines believers rather than their previous distinctions.

None of the earthly distinctions matters anymore. Christ is everything and in each of us. Jesus is the new defining reality of all of our lives.

It doesn’t mean we don’t have distinctions. But it means they don’t hold significance in terms of a pecking order.

3 Characteristics of a Thriving Christian (Be Who You Are)

  1. One who treasures Christ above all else (1-4)
  2. One who mortifies sin upon seeing it for what it is (5-11)
  3. One who models Christ magnifying him on earth (12-17)

Well I hope that this study is encouraging you in these basics of Christian living. We need to hear them again and again. I’ve been thankful for this study so far as it just exposes and brings back to the simple basics.

All of this is foundational before we get to the specific roles and relationships with one another beginning in v. 18. We are just laying the groundwork right now.