The Killing And Casting Off Of Sin

J. D. Conley
July 27, 2014

In his epistle to the Christians at Colossae the apostle Paul wrote, "Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry...But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not to one another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds" (Col. 3:5, 8,9).

Even though it would be beneficial to take each one of the sins listed and define them, that is not the intent of this article. Be that as it may, every child of God must take time to study these individual sins so as to make certain he or she is not committing them.

Instead, our focus is on the killing of sin and its subsequent casting off. Paul uses the strong word "mortify," which means to "put to death," or "utterly slay." This word does not mean "to suppress" or "try and control." Sometimes brethren think, "Well, I'm trying to resist temptation, I'm putting forth the effort to control my base impulses." Some want brownie points for their effort. Nowhere does God in His Word praise such effort which often proves to be half-hearted and feeble. God says "mortify" sin! Put it to death! Kill it! The Biblical concept is clear and it's simple.

Then twice in w.8 and 9, Paul employs the phrase "put off." The Colossians had put off these sins, Paul adds they had "put off the old man with his deeds." Once more the Biblical imagery is clear and simple. For instance, how hard is it to take off/put off a jacket? Its very easy. How much time does it require? Five seconds. How hard should it be then for us to put off sin? No harder than taking off a jacket. How long should it take? Five seconds or less. Is that too simplistic? No. It should be a fast and easy thing to stop sinning. Again, the concept is simple. The action is simple and easy. The hard part enters in when it comes to us wanting to do it.

The killing and casting off of sin is something all Christians are expected to do. It is positively a requirement for heavenly admittance (Rev.21:8, 27). Knowing that "the wages of sin is death" (Rom.6:23), why would any child of God hesitate for a split second in the killing and casting off of sin?