Second Reading: Colossians 3:1-5; 9-11

A reading from the letter of Paul to the Colossians.

So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue
the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed
with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around
Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.

Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to
spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life. When Christ (your real life, remember)
shows up again on this earth, you’ll show up, too—the real you, the glorious you.
Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ.

And that means killing off everything connected with that way of death: sexual
promiscuity, impurity, lust, doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it, and
grabbing whatever attracts your fancy.

Don’t lie to one another. You’re done with that old life. It’s like a filthy set of ill-fitting
clothes you’ve stripped off and put in the fire. Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe.

Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it.
All the old fashions are now obsolete. Words like Jewish and non-Jewish, religious and
irreligious, insider and outsider, uncivilized and uncouth, slave and free, mean nothing.
From now on everyone is defined by Christ, everyone is included in Christ.

The Word of God recorded in the letter of Paul to the Colossians.

(The Message, Eugene Peterson)