“Mortify Your Members Which Are Upon Earth" -- Colossians 3:5
The word "mortify" means to deaden, subdue, or be dead. As Paul wrote in Rom. 6:11, "Reckon yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ, our Lord." What means can be used to subdue our sinful tendencies?
1. LABOR TO SUPPRESS THE THOUGHTS OF SIN. The old nature with its appetites and desires cannot be annihilated, but it can be suppressed by not cultivating and enjoying the thoughts of sin.
2. CONSIDER WHAT A WRETCHED THING SIN IS. It is called "the filthiness of the flesh and spirit" (II Cor. 7:1). Sin is called "the works of the devil," and our sins crucified our Lord.
3. PASS THE TIME OF YOUR SOJOURNING HERE IN FEAR. "The fear of the Lord is a bridle to sin," said Mr. Spurgeon. Solomon wrote, "By mercy and truth iniquity is purged; and by the fear of the Lord men depart from evil" (Prov. 16:6). It is said of the wicked, "There is no fear of God before their eyes" (Rom. 3:18).
4. AVOID THE COMPANY OF WORLDLY PEOPLE. He who would not catch the flu should stay away from people who have the flu. If you would suppress your evil nature, cultivate the fellowship of believers whose language, amusements, and conduct honor God.
5. BE OFTEN IN THE SERVICES OF WORSHIP AND PREACHING. "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord" (Col. 3:16).
6. BE MUCH IN PRAYER. "Hold up my goings, Lord, in Thy paths, that my footsteps slip not" (Psa. 17:5). Here is a prayer I found in some old clippings which fits well here. "Lord, keep me from dishonoring Thee. Keep me from these defiling sins of my day, that I may not be worse for the times, nor the times worse because of me. Keep back thy servant from presumptuous sins. Keep me; for as a little child is only safe in the parent's arms, so I am only safe in Thee." -- Henry Mahan