Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I am a new creation

Have you ever met someone who doesn't like who they are? They may appear confident but at the end of the day, in those moments before sleep over takes them, they just can't stand to be alone with their thoughts. Or maybe the person who is coming to mind has self-destructive tendencies. Maybe they wish they could just start all over. Maybe this person is you. Unfortunately many people don't like who they are and who they are becoming. But they feel stuck, powerless to do anything about it. 

But the Bible says that it doesn't have to be this way. In fact it wasn't supposed to be this way. We were made in God's image to be defined by him. Instead, because of sin, we have tried to define ourselves in other ways that have left us feeling empty, dissatisfied, broken and stuck. When we try find meaning/happiness through relationships, sex, substances, material possessions, wealth, skills and other things, it may briefly give us a feeling that we matter, but really this is a mask. It doesn't help that deep longing inside us. Instead the Bible calls us to have the image of God inside of us cleaned up and made new again. This is the new life that we can have through Jesus.

 In 2 Corinthians 5:17-29, the Apostle Paul writes of this new life in terms of being made a “new creation” through Christ Jesus. As followers of Christ our lives are made new. The old life, the image that has been marred by sin, is put away as God is working to reconcile the world to himself through Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:19). In Ephesians 4:20-24, Paul again writes about being made new. On the basis of what God has done in Christ is a new identity which is to be put on.  This new identity is to be like God in righteousness and holiness – a renewal of the divine image.  

This is the hope for us as fallen image bearers. That the image of God that is within us is redeemable and that a new identity is available to us through Jesus. Who we are as sinners is not who we have to be. God wants to change us. He wants to give us a new life that is characterized by love, joy and peace. He wants to take away that old life that makes us feel empty and stuck. Through Christ you can be a new creation!

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