Colossians 3:8-9, “But now you yourselves are to put off *~ all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie ~| to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds”
You can tell a child of the king because he tends to act like a king. This second list of unacceptable sins in Colossians 3 deals with the mistreatment of others. These actions can never be justified.
“Anger” is a state of constant irritation and displeasure, which results in resentful bitterness. Whatever the provocation, this reveals a person’s anger toward whatever has gotten in the way of his selfishness.
“Wrath” is a tumultuous, impulsive outburst of anger like the burst of flame, which flares up quickly and then is gone. This reaction is listed as one of the deeds of the flesh (Gal 5:20), and it is unjustifiable (Eph 4:31). Anger and wrath are closely related.
“Malice” refers to “all kinds of wickedness against an object, or an evil disposition to do premeditated harm.” “For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another” (Titus 3:3). The believer is to be different.
“Blasphemy” refers to any slander, including any word or action that insults, mocks, or devalues another person or God or heavenly beings. Slander or putting others down is unacceptable.
“Filthy language out of your mouth” is “abusive, vulgar, obscene or derogatory speech that is intended to hurt or wound another person.” Being put down, shamed, or crudely ridiculed can be more painful than a physical blow.
The command to “[stop lying] to [or about] one another” refers to making false statements about others to destroy their credibility or acceptance. The present negative imperative implies that they were lying but now are commanded to stop. In this context, it refers to the malicious gossiping and exaggeration of facts designed to provoke rejection or to justify future action against someone.
The flesh in Christians can be vicious: 2 Corinthians 12:20 describes “contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, backbiting, whisperings, conceits, [and] tumults.” May these sins break our hearts as they do God’s heart.
“Dear Lord, You have commanded that I put away anger and all that it leads to. I praise You, because You enable me to experience victory over this kind of sin through the power of Your Spirit.”
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