Many times in our daily routine my wife, Parris will say, “Just put on the Lord”. This will often times come about after I make a rude comment after being cut off by an inconsiderate driver on our wonderful streets in New Orleans. “Just put on the Lord,” easy to say, but quite challenging to do in our every day practice.
All of us face challenging opportunities every day which present an opportunity for us to put on the Lord Jesus Christ. Every day opportunities to compromise or fall into temptation present themselves to us. We can make excuses for our failures, try to overcome by our own will power, put into practice the latest “Christian” cliché or technique or we can put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the Lust of the Flesh.
Sometimes these challenges come to us in our daily interaction with humans. Lets face it, people can be quite miserable and self centered. Dealing with self centered people can cause frustration which can end up in outbursts of anger or bottled up hostility in our hearts. The solution to dealing with carnal people is supernatural. Only Christ in us can forgive and love unlovely people and help us to stay out of strife. Paul said, “Above all these put on Love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful” (Colossians 3:14, 15). This supernatural response of love, acceptance and forgiveness can become our response when we put on Christ.
Another opportunity to put on Christ comes when we are tempted and enticed by our own lusts. All of us are subject to temptation. It comes to us in many different ways. It could be an opportunity to use alcohol or drugs. It may come in an opportunity to have an improper sexual relationship with someone. Or it may come to you in your lonely moments, a temptation that presents itself on television or the internet. None of us are immune to the lusts of the flesh, but we all have the opportunity to resist and overcome. We can overcome every temptation by putting on the Lord Jesus Christ. As Paul said in Romans 13:13,14 “Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to gratify its desires.”
You may wonder, “How do you put on the Lord Jesus Christ? How does this work in my everyday life?” Let me share with you several ways I have learned to put on Christ in my daily life.
First, I can be clothed with Christ by faith in the precious blood of my savior. All of us are born in a state of alienation from God. Our sinfulness blocks us from the intimacy our hearts long for and from the blessings that are found in a relationship with God. The bible talks about heaven as an incredible wedding reception celebration. Only those who have been clothed with Christ, have put on His wedding garments can come to this celebration, Rev. 7:14.
Each of us face temptation and will commit sin. If we sin we have an advocate with the Father. If we confess our sin, his blood cleanses and makes us holy in His sight. 1 John 1:9 Today you can put on the Lord Jesus Christ by faith in His precious blood. You can draw near to Him and experience His love and friendship by faith in the blood of the cross. Today put on the Lord Jesus Christ. Look to Him by faith in His blood and experience His amazing love for yourself.
Secondly, we can put on the Lord Jesus Christ by immersing ourselves in His Holy Book. The word of God is life for our souls, as we read this book, we are putting on Christ.
In the book of John, Jesus is referred to as The Word of God. “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us,” John said, “We have seen His glory, glory as of the only begotten son.” John 1:14.
Jesus said that man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Father. As we eat these words, we are putting on Christ, the Word of the Father.
Recently I enjoyed watching several legs of the Tour de France on television. I was amazed at the endurance of these athletes. This bike race lasts for 20 days with most legs going from 120-140 miles. What a race! One of the facts that amazed me was the caloric intake of the cyclists. They average between 6000-8000 calories a day. What a diet! This amount of fuel is necessary just to maintain their bodies. They need strength for the journey.
Each one of us are on an amazing journey. The demands of our Christian walk cannot be met by human efforts or means. We need the help of God. We need His heavenly fuel. We need to be immersed in His precious Word.
Fall in love again with the word of God. Read the gospels again. Immerse yourself in the epistles of Paul. Drink deeply of the Psalms of David. Put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the lusts of the flesh.
Finally, there is another practical way to put on Christ. Paul says in 1 Cor. 12:13, “For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, Jews or Greeks, slaves or free, and all were make to drink of one Spirit.”
Paul taught us to drink the Holy Spirit. This was also a common theme in the teaching of Jesus. “If anyone is thirsty let him come to me and drink,” Jesus said.
What does it mean to drink the Holy Spirit? Drinking is a means of receiving something. The Holy Spirit is tangible, portrayed as the liquid love of God. As we open our hearts in humility, we can receive His presence. His presence satisfies our thirsty souls and equips us for the journey that we are on.
I know the struggles of daily life. The challenges of family life. The financial challenge we all face daily. The health problems that we are all confronted with. The challenges of ministry, of temptation, of human interaction. The challenges are overwhelming without the help of God. I must drink of His presence.
Personally, I have learned to drink several ways. Praying extended amounts of time in my prayer language. Keeping the atmosphere filled with God listening to worship music. Drawing near to God in corporate worship settings. I have to drink in His presence everyday. Put on the Lord Jesus Christ today, drinking in His precious presence.
Today, let your spiritual appetite increase. Draw near to God. Call upon His name and thank Him for His blood. Feast on the word of God, food for your soul. Drink in the Holy Spirit – put on the Lord Jesus Christ.