Dear friends,

 

I’ve been preparing a class lecture concerning a Christian perspective on ethics that will be presented to students at Grand Canyon University in April. Searching for a timely word on what it means to live well in a world that has so many competing viewpoints, I have been drawn to a passage in the book of Colossians. On the basis of the resurrection, the Lord’s and ours, Paul calls his fellow Christians to a new way of life. He says, "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God" (Colossians 3:1, NIV). That basic outlook produces a distinct lifestyle. It means that we reject certain common practices, removing them like soiled clothing. Paul says, for instance, "you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips" (3:8).

However, having taken off one set of clothes, we are given a new wardrobe. Paul thus adds this counsel: "clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity" (3:12-14).

You see, the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, which we will be celebrating this year on April 1, is the key reality for Christian

ethics. The Lord has been raised victorious over death. We have been raised with him. For this reason, we can learn and practice new habits that are consistent with who we are in Christ. The resurrection of the Lord is good news for our present and our future. Thanks be to God!

 

Yours in Christ’s service,

 

Gale Watkins, Pastor