The Old & The New

DSCF0630I often hear people say they long for the good ole days. The Lord spoke to his people Israel through the prophet Isaiah concerning this perspective. Something better than the good ole days was coming.

“Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour …

Remember ye not the former things,

neither consider the things of old.

Behold, I will do a new thing:

now it shall spring forth … “

Isaiah 43:10-11,18-19

The people of Israel remembered the glory days of Kings David and Solomon, the great temple, and the peace that reigned in their land. They remembered the former things, but forgot both the sin that captured them and the God who had delivered them. The Lord God promised the people a new thing – a new work.

“This people have I formed for myself; they shall shew forth my praise … thou hast made me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities.

I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions

for mine own sake,

and will not remember thy sins.

Put me in remembrance:

let us plead together; declare thou, that thou mayest be justified.”

Isaiah 43:21,24-26

The new thing God would do for Israel’s people, He would do for us in Christ.

“Therefore if any man be in Christ,

he is a new creature:

old things are passed away;

behold, all things are become new.”

2 Corinthians 5:17

Old things are passed away –

The person we (who are in Christ) were born as, has died with Christ. All our sin, failures, weaknesses of the flesh have been nailed to his cross.

“Knowing this,

  • that our old man is crucified with him that the body of sin might be destroyed,
  • that henceforth we should not serve sin.
  • For he that is dead is freed from sin …
  • For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.” Romans 6:6,20

Many who are in Christ still cling to the guilt of the former life. Jesus took our guilt upon himself. The former life was lived in slavery to sin. In Christ, we have died to sin and been freed from its power over us. Since God declares us not guilty through Christ, we need to forget our past failures and remember the new thing God has done in us through his Son.

All things are become new –

  • “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death:
  • that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life …
  • now being made free from sin, and become servants to God,
  • ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.” Romans 6:4,22

 In The Old Life we were –

  • “dead in trespasses and sins;
  • Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world,
  • according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:
  • Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past
  • in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind;
  • and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.” Ephesians 2:1-3

Apart from Christ we are a people without hope.

The New Life given to us by God –

“who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we dead in sins,

  • hath quickened (made us alive) together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved:)
  • And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: T
  • hat in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus …
  • For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works,
  • which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:4-7,10

In Christ, we are cleansed and made new. Our sin is remembered no more. We are under God’s blessing.

“As far as the east is from the west,

so far hath he removed our transgressions from us …

Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man,

unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, saying,

BLESSED ARE THEY WHOSE INIQUITIES ARE FORGIVEN,

AND WHOSE SINS ARE COVERED.

BLESSED IS THE MAN TO WHOM THE LORD WILL NOT IMPUTE SIN.”

Psalm 103:12; Romans 4:6-8

Have you received new life in Christ? You are blessed.

In Christ

DSCF0006“Therefore if any man be in Christ,

he is a new creature:

old things are passed away;

behold, all things are become new.”

2 Corinthians 5:17

Have you ever wished you could start over? Not just turn over a new leaf that would eventually fall to the ground and be crushed under the weight of trying again; Or making that New Year resolution only to fail in performing it for more than two weeks. But really begin new like a new born baby with its life stretched out before it with all kinds of possibilities. It doesn’t know what failure or bad choices look like.  You can have a new beginning. Christ made it possible.

Our physical birth bears the image of Adam the first human.

“And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image …

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. Genesis 5:3; Romans 5:12

No matter how hard we try, how may leaves we turn over, or resolutions we make we cannot bridge the gap Adam made between us and God. The sin image we bear in our flesh separates us from a holy God. Only one who is holy could bridge that gap. Only God is holy and he came in Christ Jesus his Son to do that very thing – to make us new. Not just a new image, but a new life with a new heart, a new spirit a new perspective and a new hope.

The New Image:

In Christ:

  • “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren …
  • And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly…
  • That which is born of the flesh is flesh;
  • and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
  • Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again…
  • not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” Romans 8:29; 1 Corinthians 15:49; John 3:6,7; 1:13

In Adam we bear sin’s guilt and punishment. We are powerless to overcome it in our own strength. No matter how good we think we are, we are not holy. We are not righteous. And that is the only way to come to God. He is that way. He has provided all we need in Christ.

“According as his divine power hath given unto us all things

that pertain unto life and godliness,

through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises:

that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature,

having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”

2 Peter 1:3,4

In Christ we have all we need for life and godliness for He has made us to share in his divine nature. In Him we have escaped the corrupt state we inherited from Adam.

  • “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit …
  • In whom we have redemption through his blood,
  • the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace …
  • of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption;” Romans 8:1; Ephesians 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:30

Jesus bridged the gap. He took on our flesh with all its weakness and guilt. It has been crucified in him. He has given us a new life, not a new leaf, not a second chance to try to make it right. He has made us right with the Father. He has made us completely new. It took God only a day to create the first Adam. He painstakingly works his righteousness in us throughout a lifetime preparing us for eternity with him. Then the image of Christ in us will be completed.

“Beloved, now are we the sons of God

and it doth not yet appear what we shall be:

but we know that, when he shall appear,

we shall be like him;

for we shall see him as he is.”

1 John 3:2

Then all things will be made new and the old will be gone forever. More about that next time.

What does being “in Christ” mean to you?