by Mark Clements
Sunday, July 14
In Christ We Are a New Creation
“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.
During the earthly ministry of Jesus, He encountered a curious Pharisee named Nicodemus. Nicodemus was convinced that Jesus had come from God since it would have been impossible for anyone to do what Jesus did unless God was the One sending Him. The faith of Nicodemus was still developing, and since he did not want to be seen with Jesus as he sought answers to his questions, he visited Jesus at night. Before Nicodemus could even ask his first question, Jesus informed him of his need for rebirth, saying, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Of course, Nicodemus was confused by the statement, and Jesus went on to explain Himself, but He began with a powerful declaration of the new life God brings.
What Nicodemus had difficulty understanding was the nature of man from birth. His religious background had formed his worldview, namely, that man can make himself better by abiding by religious rules and doing good things. However, no amount of religious activity can rid a man of sin and sinful habits, which is why Jesus told Nicodemus he needed to be born again. That is what God does through His Son. By faith in Jesus, God causes believers to be born again, making people who were spiritually dead, alive. Until a person is born again by the Holy Spirit, through faith in Jesus, he is unable to do anything spiritually beneficial for God, for others, or even for himself. Thankfully, in Christ, God removes what is old and He makes every believer new.
JUST A THOUGHT: To enjoy the new life, allow what is old to pass away.