March 12, 2023
Sermon Series: Spirit-Filled Living Is Essential For Christians
Book of Ephesians
Sermon # 7: BELIEVERS ARE TO STRIP OFF THE OLD GARMENTS
Introduction: When we become Christians, we receive Christ not only as Savior, but also as Lord, which means He is the Lord of our lives. As we let Christ be the Lord of our lives, our old values, attitudes, and habits are replaced by new ones. As we allow Christ to take control of our lives, we change and become more and more like Him.
Have you heard the phrase: “Clothes make the man”? A lot of money is spent on clothes throughout the world. The right combination of clothes can enhance a person’s appearance. The right color and style go a long way toward the process of dressing up properly.
Of course, the reverse is true as well. The wrong combinations, colors, and styles will be offensive to many who have different tastes.
Therefore, when a person clothes himself, he wants to be sure to put on the right clothes. If he dresses improperly, putting on clothes that clash or are unsuitable, he is frequently unacceptable and shunned. Most people avoid the person who is improperly dressed, for he or she embarrasses them. So, it is with God. There are things that we are to put on and things that we are not to put on, things that are to clothe our lives and things that are not to clothe our lives. The believer’s duty is to discover those things that are to be stripped off, allowing the Lord to cleanse Him through and through. The believer is to put off the garments of the old man.
This passage builds on what Paul has been saying about the new life we have been given in Jesus. The word “wherefore” calls our attention back to verses 17-24, which are a basic overview of the new life we have in Jesus. Since the old man of sin has been “put off,” v. 22, since the mind has been “renewed,” v. 23, and since the “new man,” has been put on, v. 24, the child of God is expected to take off the old garments and put on the new garments.
BELIEVERS ARE TO STRIP OFF THE OLD GARMENTS, WHICH IS THE OLD MAN!
PUT ON THE NEW GARMENTS, WHICH IS THE NEW MAN!
The believer is to strip off the garments of the old man.
Part 1: We have three requirements; for the believer to strip off the garments of the old man.
I. THE GARMENT OF LYING v. 25
The believer is to strip away the garment of lying. The word lying means that which is false. It is untruthfulness, deception, misrepresentation, exaggeration.
A. A lie does at least three things.
1. Lying misrepresents the truth. it camouflages and hides the truth.
2. Lying deceives a person. It leads a person astray. A person deceives…
· To get what he wants
· To seduce someone (tempt or persuade)
· To cover up or hide something
· To cause harm or hurt
3. Lying builds a wrong relationship, a relationship built upon sinking sand.
Here are some common lies that are a part of every day life in our nation.
· The check is in the mail.
· I’ll start my diet tomorrow.
· We service what we sell.
· Give me your number and the doctor will call you right back.
· One size fits all.
· This offer is limited to the first 100 people who call in.
· Your luggage isn’t lost, it’s misplaced.
· Leave your resume and we’ll keep it on file.
· This hurts me more than it hurts you.
· I just need five minutes of your time.
· Your table will be ready in five minutes.
B. The charge: Stop lying: speak the truth (v. 25).
C. The reason: Believers are one body (v. 25).
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” NKJV
Lying takes its stand with the father of lies, the devil (Jn 8:44)
II. THE GARMENT OF ANGER v. 26-27
The believer is to strip away the garment of anger. People do become angry: note that Scripture recognizes this. There are times when anger is called for, but we are to guard against sinning when we become angry. Anger causes us to either react, lash out and hurt others, or else it motivates us right to right wrongs and correct injustices.
A. There is wrong anger, or what may be called unjustified or selfish
1. There is the anger that broods, that is selfish. It clings to malice; it will not forget; it lingers.
2. That is the anger that holds contempt. It despises; it ridicules; it arrogantly exalts self and calls another person empty and useless. This is an anger that is full of malice (evil intent, venom). It arises from pride---a proud wrath (Prov. 21:24).
“The proud and arrogant man---“Mocker” is his name, he behaves with overweening pride.” NIV
3. There is the anger that curses. It seeks to destroy a person and his or her reputation morally, intellectually, and spiritually.
B. There is right anger, or what may be called justified anger. The believer must be angry with those who sin and do wrong and who are unjust and selfish in their behavior. However, a justified anger is always disciplined and controlled; it is always limited to those who do wrong either against God or against others. The believer knows that he is angry for a legitimate reason, and he seeks to correct the situation in the most peaceful way possible.
“Be ye angry, and sin not” let not the sun go down upon your wrath.” (Eph. 4:26)
“But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.” (Colossians 3:8)
III. THE GARMENT OF STEALING v. 28
The believer is to strip away the garment of stealing. The word “steal” means to cheat, to take wrongfully from another person, either legally or illegally.
Some people may say, “I’m not a thief.” You might want to wait to say that.
A man sent the IRS a check and a note that read, “A while back I failed to report some income to you, and I’m having trouble sleeping. Here is a check for $500. If I still can’t sleep, I’ll send the rest.”
The Bible teaches that not paying what we owe is wickedness because it’s just another form of stealing. Instead of stealing, we must labour, working with our hands the thing which is good (Eph. 4:28b).
A. We have a charge: Work for what you need & more. (Eph. 4:28b)
B. The reason: To support yourself and to help the needy. (Eph. 4:28c)
This refers only to people in legitimate need. Look what Paul says in 2 Thessalonians 3:10b, “If anyone is not willing to work, “neither should he eat.”
As Christians we are under no obligation to help someone who can work and has opportunity to work, but refuses to do so.
Responsive Reading: Ephesians 4:25-32