“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” - 2 Corinthians 5:17
A couple of weeks ago, Nicodemus wrestled with Jesus’ assertion that a man must be born again to see the kingdom of God (John 3:3). Despite all his learning and education, Nicodemus could not see past the physical aspect of Jesus’ words to discern the spiritual implications. Today, Paul uses similar language: anyone in Christ is a new creation. Paul did not just write about this spiritual truth; he lived it every day of his life and ministry. We have read about the apostle’s incredible conversion on the road to Damascus, his transformation from persecutor of the church to planter and evangelist. Paul became a new person through Christ. The grace of Jesus atoned for every extravagant sin he had or would ever commit.
People often resist the Gospel of salvation with these words: “If God knew what I have done, he would not want me.” That response always makes me laugh! God already knows everything you have done, every thought you have had, and every inclination of your heart. He knows you are an absolute mess. And he chose to pour out his love upon you anyway. He chose to send his Son to die in your place. He wants to forgive you for every sin and failure, to clothe you in the righteous robes of Christ, and to empower you to live into the new, abundant life he has for you. God’s heart for you is perfect.
Why do so many of us walk around dragging our bag of burdens and sins, despite the forgiveness we have received? Why do we choose to hold onto our dirty rags when we have already been clothed in the robes of righteousness? Paul was made a new creation. The old ways, the atrocious sins, the agenda of his life was made completely new. Paul didn’t look back except to marvel at what Jesus had done for and in him. He exhorted the church of Philippi to look forward: “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14).
Are you focused on your sin and failures or the grace and forgiveness Jesus offers? Are you living as a new creation? Jesus died so that you could be free, truly free. It is time to lay down the old and to embrace the new. God knows every aspect of your life, and he loves you; he forgives you; and he invites you to live as his holy and righteous child.
You are a new creation!
Reflect and Respond:
What is the Lord asking you to lay aside so that you can live as his new creation? If you can’t seem to let go, seek out the help of a pastor, a godly friend, a counselor, or a prayer minister. Today is the day to let go of the old and to live into the new. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
The Resurrected Life: Making All Things New - The Bible promises that those who are in Christ are "new creatures." But how does that transformation take place? This unique Easter-season Bible study provides a space in which we can discover what it truly means to live a new life. As we listen, we'll learn how the resurrection of Jesus Christ changes everything - for us. Begin the journey to new life today!
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