Sunday, February 17, 2013

New Again

New Again
Feb 18, 2013
2 Cor 4:16  "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day."
When something is new, it may be described as fresh, clean, shiny, even different from the old.  If you have come to Christ, at that point you became a new creation.  You were fresh, clean, shiny, different from the old.  While you probably didn't look any different, the Lord transformed your insides; He made you new.  But if something becomes tarnished over time, how can it be made new again?  After all, something can only be new once.  You were a new Christian at one point, can you be a new Christian again?  The Lord would say that something, even you, can be RE-newed.  Meaning, it can be brought back to that state of new-ness, the point of being fresh, clean, and shiny again.

In the Old Testament, you'll read that the Jewish people were constantly falling short of living how the Lord intended for them.  But there are many instances when the leaders "renewed" their covenant with the Lord, reaffirming their intent to live the way He expected.  That opportunity is available for you and me today.  Though you may not have fallen away from the Lord, you may have lost your new-ness, the point when you were fresh, clean, and shining with excitement to live for the Lord.  You can be made new again, even still, after following the Lord your whole life.

The Apostle Paul wrote to the early believers, in several different letters to several different churches, about being made new again.  He was writing to them as believers, meaning they had already given their lives to Christ; they had all become the initial new creation on the inside.  But for some reason they were falling short of what they knew the Lord expected of them; they had become slightly tarnished by the world, losing their clean excitement for Him.  They were discouraged but Paul wrote to them and encouraged them that their Christianity was and is a renewal process taking place daily.  It wasn't a one time deal; it isn't once new never new again.  He said that we can and should be renewed EVERY day.

Paul even went so far as to say the only thing that matters is the new creation in our lives, not the past actions.  It doesn't matter what we did or did not do; it only matters that we are a new creation.  When he wrote that, he even emphasized in his writing that he was using large font letters, bolded in print to get the point across.  It was as if he was typing in all capital letters, yelling it out.   He wanted them to understand that being made new was important and critical; the ONLY thing important.  This is still true in our lives today.  We may be hung up on our past successes and failures but the only thing important in our lives is the renewal of the Lord in our lives on a daily basis.  This isn't getting saved once every day.  This is deciding that each day is going to be a new day in the Lord, allowing Him to work in our lives constantly changing us, constantly molding us into the Christians that He needs us to be for Him.

You cannot be a successful Christian living as the old creation you were yesterday, even if it was good.  You must continually be remade anew.  Re-affirm your dedication to Him and allow Him to make you new even today.  You look so good when you are fresh and clean for Him, shining with excitement to live for the Lord.

Don't take my word for it; look it up: 2 Kings 23:3, Ps 51:10, Lam 5:21, Rom 12:2, Gal 6:11-18, 2 Cor 5:16-18, Col 3:10, Titus 3:5

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