Do you have a green and gold T-shirt in your dresser drawer? Wearing a replica Brewers jersey today? Is there a red Badgers shirt waiting to come out for the fall football season? Many of us like to display our loyalty to a favorite team or event with a colorful shirt for all to see. No matter what we’re doing or where we are, the shirt tells everyone that we’re a fan.
Even better is to let others know that we are children of God and followers of Jesus. You might have a T-shirt from one of our CLC camps, Man-Up conference, or Mission Helper trip. Maybe you have a shirt with a Bible passage printed on it for all to see and read. Again, wherever you are, the shirt tells others something about your faith.
But better still is to let your faith show, not just in the clothing you wear, but in your entire lifestyle. In tomorrow’s sermon text we’ll hear St. Paul’s prayer for the Colossian believers that they “may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work” (Col. 1:10).
What we say to our families, text to friends, and do at work doesn’t make us God’s children or save us. All our righteous actions are filthy rags as far as earning God’s favor. Saving faith is based on Christ alone. He was perfect in our place. He paid the penalty for the sins of all people, that we might be declared justified before God, pleasing to Him in every way.
But that doesn’t mean faith is passive and inactive. Faith in Jesus is alive. It wants to show and be seen. If we want others to know how much a sports team means to us, how much more will we want to let everyone know that we love the Lord and that our lives are all about living for Him, the One who died for us.
Surrounded by people who are caught up in the pleasures of the world and who don’t want to hear about sin and their need for Christ, we can easily be intimidated into hiding faith. After all, if no one knows you’re a believer, you won’t be targeted as one. But then let’s remember who we really are. We have been rescued from sin and unbelief. We’re no longer part of the world. We’ve been baptized into God’s kingdom. We have been set apart as His holy people. We are heirs of heaven and all its glory.
With the apostles Peter and John, may we gladly take a stand and say, “We cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20). May we show we are clothed with Jesus’ righteousness by honoring His commandments, rather than ignoring them and going along with the sinful attitudes and actions of others, no matter how popular it may be. “Clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature” (Rom. 13:14).
When you slip on that T-shirt this morning, put on Christ, as well!
In His name,
Our service tomorrow is at 9 a.m. New board members elected last Sunday will be installed into their offices in the service. The Lord’s Supper will also be celebrated.