All Things New - In Christ
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17
In Christ. What does it mean to be in Christ? If we want to know what it's like to be a new creation, it seems essential that we know if we are in Christ, right?
First of all, if we are in Christ, we BELIEVE. We believe that Jesus is the Messiah - the promised Savior. We believe that Jesus is the Son of God. We believe that Jesus, as part of God's redemptive plan, was born to a virgin, lived a perfect, sinless life, took on our sins and died on the cross to save us from the punishment we deserve, rose from the grave victorious over sin and death and then returned to the Father where he now intercedes on our behalf. If we are in Christ, we believe he did this because of his great love for us.
Second if we are in Christ, we are BORN AGAIN. What does that mean? Well to be born again means that we have committed our lives to Jesus. We have asked for forgiveness of our sins and received it because of HIS grace and mercy (not because of anything we did to earn it). If we are in Christ we are born again to be spiritually transformed from who we were to who God created us to be in Christ. When we are born again, we are saved from the death we deserve due to sin and we put to death our old selves to make Jesus Lord of all.
Lastly, if we are in Christ, we are BEING CONTINUALLY RENEWED. By the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling within us, we emerge new creatures with a fresh outlook. We abandon our old sinful ways and begin to habitually walk in a way that honors and glorifies God. We examine our hearts, our thoughts and our actions to ensure they line up with scripture and what Jesus is asking of us and we love God and others more than we love ourselves. Once we are in Christ, we don't look the same as we did before we knew Him. We are a new creation, when we are in Christ.
On this New Year's Day, I invite us each to look at our lives, examine our hearts and determine, am I in Christ? For a long time, I thought I was, just because I believed. But I had never been born again and was definitely not being continually renewed. Maybe that's your story today too. There is no time like the present to make the change. You can come to Christ right where you are, just as you are, today. Because every day, Jesus is making ALL THINGS NEW!
To join the All Things New Bible Reading Challenge and learn more about the new creation we are in Christ, go to Resources > Bible Reading Challenge to register!