1. Colossians 3 contains a number of important instructions that are designed to help us live as the Lord desires. a. Vs.1&2 teach us to seek those things that are above, and vs.3&4 show why we are to do so. b. Vs.5-7 list several activities that we are to mortify. c. In vs.8-9a additional activities are listed that we are to put off, and we are shown why we are to do so in vs.9b-11. d. 7 characteristics are listed in vs.12-13 that we are to put on. e. Vs.14 teaches us to put on love above all the other characteristics. 2. In our lesson we are concentrating on one particular matter mentioned in vs.12 -- we are to put on kindness. 3. We need to pay close attention to the things we are studying because we constantly see and hear people demonstrating a lack of kindness. 4. We must not allow this influence to rub off on us. 5. Let us begin our study by showing that . . .
I. THE LORD'S PEOPLE ARE TO BE KIND
A. Colossians 3:12 is very clear in teaching us to be kind. B. Additional passages include: 1. Ephesians 4:31-32 -- Not only are the Lord's people to be kind, but we are to put away everything that opposes kindness 2. 2 Peter 1:7 -- "Brotherly kindness" is one of the Christian graces that we are to develop with "all diligence." C. Since the Lord requires kindness from His people, we must understand what it is.
II. LET US DEFINE "KINDNESS"
A. A kind person possesses a pleasant or benevolent disposition, is considerate and helpful, and is compassionate and concerned about other people. B. To help us understand what kindness is, let us look at God's example. 1. God's kindness is described in Titus 3:3-7. 2. Jesus also described God's kindness in Luke 6:35. a. God is kind to good people and to those who are grateful to Him. b. God is also "kind unto the unthankful and to the evil." C. God helps us understand what kindness is, and He shows us that kindness is to be shown to those who deserve it as well as those who do not. D. Let us turn our attention to . . .
III. SOME ADDITIONAL MATTERS RELATING TO KINDNESS
A. We must possess the right type of love -- love "is kind" (1 Corinthians 13:4). B. To be kind, we must not provoke people (Galatians 5:26). C. Kindness, as well as the lack of it, can be demonstrated through our words. 1. In describing the virtuous woman, Proverbs 31:26 says: "in her tongue is the law of kindness." 2. Some helpful instructions are given in James 1:19-20. D. Kindness, as well as the lack of it, will affect the way others treat us. 1. This is illustrated in 2 Chronicles 10:7. 2. The aged men of Israel advised Rehoboam to be kind to his people. 3. The king rejected this advice, and many of the Israelites rebelled against him.
1. The key to being kind is having the right things in the heart (Proverbs 23:7). 2. Kindness will be lacking when there are things in the heart such as envy, uncontrolled anger, hatred, evil speaking, grudges, and vengeance. 3. Kindness will not be lacking when there are things in the heart such as courtesy, compassion, mercy, meekness, patience, humility, and forgiveness. 4. Let us provide the right example at all times before others.