As I pointed out in my last post, true Christians have been “raised with Christ” and have a responsibility not to live for themselves but to “seek things above” (Colossians 3:1-2). We are to actively pursue righteousness and holiness. But this also means are to actively avoid and exterminate things in our life which are unholy:
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. (Colossians 3:5 NIV)
Christians should not dabble in vices and attitudes mentioned above. We are to put them to death. That means we must make every effort to kill them at their source, not entertain them at all. We are not to tolerate them. We are to aggressively attack them whenever they rear their ugly heads. We have no business being attracted to these things:
Sexual immorality. Many people who are not true Christians joke about and delight in sexual immorality. There are some men in society who rank themselves based on how many girlfriends they have similtaneously. We are not to be jealous of such individuals, but to pity them, because they do not understand true love and commitment. They only see others as something to be used. This lifestyle is unacceptable for Christians, because Christianity is based on true love and caring for others, wheareas sexual immorality is little more than love of self trying to disguise itself as love for others.
Impurity. Impurity is when you mix what is true and good with what is wrong and evil and call it “good enough.” Christians are to remain pure, completely committed to doing what is right and holy.
Lust. Lust is wanting things that it is wrong for you to have. Evil Desires are similar. It is wanting to do things that are wrong. Christians are not supposed to only do what is right, but to honestly want to do what is right. We must not be jealous of evil. Some people think that heaven will be a place where they can do all the immoral things that they are not allowed to do here on Earth. That is wrong. The reason why you are commanded not to do them here is because they are bad for you. There is only holiness and purity in heaven.
Finally, we get to Greed, which the writer says is idolatry. Greed is wanting physical things simply for their own value. True Christians realize that nothing has any real value apart from God. For instance, wanting a lot of money and possessions for no purpose other than to pamper yourself is wrong. This is “idolatry” because you are worshipping these things as God. We must only ever acquire things in order to use them for God.