The Christian's New Clothes

January 8, 2023

David Sorn

We are former beggars who have been adopted by the King. It’s time to put on new clothes!

The Christian's New Clothes

January 8, 2023

David Sorn

We are former beggars who have been adopted by the King. It’s time to put on new clothes!

SERMON TRANSCRIPT | Colossians 3: 5-17


Morning. My name is David Sorn, and I’m the Lead Pastor here at Renovation Church.

Hey, before we get into our message, let me just say a quick word about our upcoming baptisms on January 22nd and March 5th

We see many people get baptized here almost monthly, and I would love for you to participate in that if you haven’t yet.

If you’re a believer in Jesus, and you’ve never been baptized as a believer, I want to highly encourage you to get baptized.

The Bible speaks A LOT about baptism, and tells us it’s something we are each to do after we make a decision to believe in Jesus.

It’s an outward symbol that Jesus gave us new life and washed away our sins

It’s something that Jesus even commands each of us to do…it’s that important for the Christian.

So…if you’ve been waiting to do it…I want to encourage you to sign-up through our app, or online, or out at the table today.

Let go of any excuses you may have.

Baptism isn’t about being ready for it.

In fact, baptism is the opposite: It’s displaying the truth that we’ll never be good enough and he died for us anyway.

It’s not about the conditions being just right..

It’s a matter of obedience.

In the Bible…people often even got baptized the same day they believed.

And it’s not (and this a tough on in our Midwestern culture), it’s not even about “if you were already baptized as a baby”

I was myself…but I was baptized as an adult because the Bible never mentions baptizing babies.

Every time the Bible describes baptism, it describes someone who gets baptized after their faith becomes their own…after they believe.

It’s an amazing experience, and I want you, as a follower of Jesus, to trust Him in this.

If you’ve been putting it off, today’s the day to sign up!


All right, we are continuing this week in our study of the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Colossians.

Which is a letter in the Bible from one of Christianity’s earliest leaders to one of its earliest churches.

So everybody grab a Bible.

Page 806

Colossians 3:5-11

At this point in the letter, Paul is going to get really practical.

He’s giving a roadmap for these new Christians in their new spiritual life.

He’s teaching them how to live like Jesus.

Let’s take a look


(Colossians 3:5-11) – NIV

5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11 Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.

What we’re reading today are instructions on what the Bible calls Sanctification.

Two important words you want to learn in theology (which is the study of God) are:

Justification: When we are made right with God through our faith in Christ.

Sanctification: The lifelong process of getting more free from sin and more like Christ.

So justification happens in a moment…maybe at that moment you stood up at a service, or your friend led you to Christ at Starbucks.

In that precise moment of faith, you were forgiven and made right, justified, by God.

But sanctification will take your whole life…and even then, God won’t completely finish His work in you until your soul goes to be with the Lord someday….

And here’s the thing, by our faith, we are all equally justified.

But we’re not all equally sanctified in this life.

Some Christians, by the time they die, look more like Jesus than other Christians.

And that’s because they’re working this process from Colossians 3 (among other things) out

And so Paul wants us as Christians to work towards spiritual maturity (as we talked about in chapter 2).

He doesn’t want you to stay as a baby Christian.

He wants you to have more and more freedom from sin and to look more like Jesus!

But how?

Well, he gives us 3 steps to this in this passage:

Here’s the first one

A Process of Sanctification

#1: Put off your old clothes

Look at verse 9.

This is the metaphor that Paul will carry throughout much of this chapter.

He says, “Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self”

So, one of the main teachings of the New Testament is that before you are born again, before you are made alive through faith in Jesus, you only have what’s called, “an old self” with old clothes if you will, an old ways of doing things.

This your life BC…before Christ.

I like to think of this way.

There is a Phil Wickham song called House of The Lord.

And, there’s a line in the bridge where he says (I’ll sing it for you…ha!), “We were the beggars, and now we’re royalty”

Let me tell you through story form what he means and what the Bible is teaching when it’s talking about this change of clothes and change of life.

Imagine this in the days of old.

If a King were to go out into the city, and find an orphan, let’s say a 14-year old beggar in the shabbiest of clothes.

But let’s actually say this young teenage beggar is a notorious for their behavior.

They’re always in trouble, gambling at an early age, stealing from kind old ladies…

And let’s say the King says, “I’m going to adopt you. And offer you a new way of life. A new way of living. Come into my castle, share my food, my safety, and you will know my love as an adopted child of the King”

Now, if that happened, would that 14-year old beggar continue to walk around in the castle in beggar’s clothes?

No way, they would don the clothes of royalty.

(The Christian’s New Clothes Title Slide)

And the metaphor is not pitting poverty vs riches.

No, but the spiritual poverty of not knowing Christ…vs the riches of knowing Him.

And so Paul is saying that when you become a Christian…when you go from Beggar to a member of the King’s royal family…

…you can’t keep walking in the old ways, and wearing your old clothes…you’ve got a new life with the King!

And what are those old ways?

Really Paul gives us two categories here:

One, we could call Sensual Sins.

And the other, Social Sins.

The sensual sins are the ones of verse 5:

See verse 5?

It says: Sexual immorality (that comes from a broad Greek word, porneia, which means all types of sexual sin outside of sex within the Christian definition of marriage)…

And then Paul lists impurity, lust, evil desires, and greed

These are all the sins where our flesh, our carnal desires running wild.

These are the old clothes of a beggar where we’re trying to find life in the passions of the flesh.

And the social sins are the ones listed in verse 8

Anger, rage, malice, slander, filthy language

And Paul says, put these off now.

You can’t be wearing the clothes of a beggar anymore.

You’re a child of the King.

There is no way that Jesus would walk in these sensual or social sins, and so if we now identify with Him…

….if we are a part of, and represent His family….

…then, we won’t walk in those old ways either.

They’re not befitting of you anymore.

You are royalty.

Now, that doesn’t mean that we don’t sometimes mess up.

Oh, we do.

Remember, Sanctification is a lifelong process…so you’ll always have sin.

But you never want to be intentionally WALKING in sin…or tolerant of sin in your own life.

In fact, notice how Paul tells us to treat sin:

Paul doesn’t say, “Would you kindly put away your sin please…if you want to?”

No, what did he say in verse 5?

Put it to death!

As John Owen once famously said:

“Always be killing sin or it will be killing you” – John Owen

And honestly, the American Church has regressed to an infant’s understanding of this concept, and we need to study it again.

We need to take sin seriously again.

Or it will collectively kill all of us.

Sin isn’t a plaything.

Take the sensual sins that Paul talks about for example.

Every American bows down to something. We all worship something.

And the average American does not bow down to Jesus, the average American bows down to the idolatrous statue of sex.

It’s what they live for.

Millions and millions of Americans think that the ultimate happiness and their ultimate identity is to be found…in sex.

Now, let me say, sex, in a Godly context, in marriage, is a God-given thing, and a wonderful gift.

But sex is like fire.

Fire is beautiful in the fireplace (in its proper context), but when it spills over to your carpet, not so much.

And see, what Paul wants Christians to know is that if you continue to let things like anger or lust have free reign over your mind…

If you put back on those old clothes, those old BC ways of thinking before you knew Christ…

Then those beggar clothes will lead you back to a beggar life.

And before you know it, your house will be on fire.

And so I ask you: What sin in your life are you not taking seriously right now?

What sin do you need to kill, before it kills you?

Because if you don’t kill it, and you don’t fight it, and you don’t do all you can to get it out of your life so you are nowhere near it…

Then, what happens in our lukewarm complacency, is we allow those beggar clothes to hang around in our closet…

And soon enough, they call out to you, asking you to remember the good life you supposedly had together.

And before we know it (even though we live in the castle!), we’re walking to the closet, and putting back on those old clothes

Kill sin, or it will be killing you.

(The Christian’s New Clothes Title Slide)

If you want the sanctification process to work in your life…and you want to mature as a Christian, and you want more freedom from sin…

One of the best things you can do is change how you pray.

Don’t just sit down and ask for things.

Make confession and repentance a daily part of your prayer time.

Say, “Lord, show me where I’m putting back on my old clothes…where I’m living a life not befitting of you and your Kingdom”

“And God, help me in my repentance (my turning) from those things, put them away.”


Okay, so putting off the old self is step 1 in Paul’s sanctification process for the Colossians, but let’s keep reading now to see step 2

Page 806

Colossians 3:12-14

(Colossians 3:12-14) – NIV

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Okay, here we see the second part of the process (don’t read highlights)

A Process of Sanctification

#1: Put off your old clothes

#2: Put on your new clothes

When the beggar enters the castle as the newly adopted child of the King, they don’t just put away their old clothes.

They need to put ON new clothes of royalty.

So Paul tells Christians to now “clothe yourselves” with compassion, kindness, humility, forgiveness…

These are the characteristics of Christ.

If we are going to represent the King, we should wear His clothes, His character, should we not?

But this is something that requires intentionality

It reminds me of an explanation I heard once about the cuckoo bird

The cuckoo is a common bird in England that never builds its own nest.

When it’s ready to lay an egg, it finds another nest with eggs and no mama bird present

The cuckoo lands, hurriedly lays its egg, and takes off again.

Often, it’ll lay eggs in the nest of a Thrush.

By the way, I verified all of this bird information, with our resident bird expert Pastor Josh…

So when the Mother Thrush comes back, she’s usually not very good at math, so she gets right to work hatching the eggs.

Four little thrushes and one large cuckoo eventually hatch.

The cuckoo is two or three times the size of the thrushes.

Mrs. Thrush, having hatched the five little birds, goes off early in the morning to get the worm.

She comes back, circles the nest to see four petite thrush mouths and one cavernous cuckoo mouth.

Guess who gets the worm? The cuckoo.

And so the cuckoo gets bigger and bigger; the thrushes get smaller and smaller.

To find a baby cuckoo in a nest in England, simply walk along a hedge row until you find little dead thrushes.

The cuckoo throws them out one at a time.

And we celebrate that by honoring the Cuckoo with its own clock.

And the moral of the story is this: you, as a Christian, have something similar to 2 natures in your nest (your sinful nature/your flesh/your old self…

… AND, secondly, if you’re a Christian, you have the new self/ you’re born again, you have the Holy Spirit inside of you…giving you power over sin”

And see, the nature you go on feeding w/ your daily choices will be the one that grows

And so, if at work, slander and gossip and course language is a daily part of your life, and every day you feed that, they’re only gonna grow

The same is true with anger and rage and lust

But if instead, you start each morning, and you pray, “Lord, show me someone I can show kindness to today.”

Or Lord, “Help me show humility today, by not talking about myself so much”

And you feed that part of your soul, it’s going to grow and look more like Jesus.

(The Christian’s New Clothes Title Slide)

And as Christians, we’re not trying to do these things just to be good, or to be kind, or to earn God’s love.

No, the inverse is true.

We do it because of God’s love.

Look at verse 13

. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

This is, what we like to call around here, The Platinum Rule

That we are to treat each other like God treated us.

This is one of our motivations for putting on the new self.

We seek to live in kindness, mercy, and love because we were sinful and rebellious beggars, and yet God forgave us and brought us into His family.

And that gives us new strength to wear the King’s clothes, even when on the days we would prefer the beggar’s.


But even then, if we’re honest, sin STILL feels almost too appealing to avoid some days .


And so Paul gives us another way to boost this process of sanctification

Let’s read

Page 806

Colossians 3:15-17

(Colossians 3:15-17) – NIV

15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Okay, here we see the third part of the process

A Process of Sanctification

#1: Put off your old clothes

#2: Put on your new clothes

#3: Our hearts are changed through the message of Christ

I love verse 16

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly.

That is, let it fill your lives.

The Word of God is so powerful.

It promises you that it will change you from the inside out.

And it’s the Word of God that inspires you to put off your old beggar clothes and put on your new clothes.

Honestly, even in just studying for this message this week, as I’m reading the text in here, I feel conviction and inspiration anew to fight with a new vigor against my own sin.

But if I’m not in here, that’s not happening, and that process of sanctification gets stunted.

We have too many baby Christians in this country, because we have been experiencing a famine of the hearing of God’s Word for a generation now.

We need to hear it (read it), every Sunday.

We need to read it ourselves, every day.

Paul then says, let even the sounds of Christian music (God’s truth through song) fill your lives.

…so that the truth of God is dwelling among you in your everyday lives…

…always challenging you and inspiring you.

And we need to let the message of Christ dwell richly among us…

…because our minds are like those of the Israelites after they were delivered from slavery in Egypt.

Because they just kept looking back towards slavery, towards bondage, towards their old slave clothes.

Their minds lied to them…telling them that slavery is the life they wanted.

But Paul tells us what?

Let the Word of God dwell among you richly, so that you will always remember to set your minds on things above.

Christian, you are called to not set your mind on Egypt, but to set your mind on the fact that you were:

A Beggar, and yet the King came down from his castle to adopt you.

And He came not only just to bring you into His family.

But he came and sacrificed his life on a cross for yours

Dying for your sins.

And because of your faith…

He has ushered you into His Kingdom…

…and one day, you will live with Him, in power, and love, and joy

And there will be no more sadness, and no more pain, and no more death…

….and we will delight in him forever.

Do you see what I mean?

Let the Word of God (that truth) dwell among you richly..

SO THAT you know that you know that you know…

That the clothes of the King are infinitely better than your old clothes of slavery.

Let me pray

Copyright: David Sorn
Renovation Church in Blaine, MN

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