April 15, 2017
I love springtime. The Northwest Iowa town I live in seems to “wake up” when spring hits. Neighbors greet each other and ask how the winter was. The mornings are filled with the songs of robins. Bikes start lining up beside the elementary school. Life seems new again.
It is such a beautiful picture of what happens on on the inside of our hearts when God touches us. That first touch of God when we accept Christ creates a new birth deep in our spirits. Our spirits become alive in Christ.
Ephesians 2:4-5 – But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love that He had for us, made us alive with the Messiah even though we were dead in trespasses. You are saved by grace! (HCSB)
2 Corinthians 5:17 – Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
Romans 6:4 – We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
1 Peter 1:3 – Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. According to His great mercy, He has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and into an inheritance that is imperishable, uncorrupted, and unfading, kept in heaven for you. (HCSB)
I love these verses. God has given us a new birth into a living hope. Doesn’t that sound like the essence of springtime? What a great God we serve to show us in nature, in the things we can see with our eyes and understand with our minds, what happens in the inner part of us deep in our hearts.
This new birth, this new life that God gives us when we accept His Son, doesn’t stop there. We have the choice to make each day to choose life, to walk in the new spirit that Christ placed in us. Our bodies and our sinful soul (mind, will, and emotions) war each day with the new spirit that has been placed in us. We must consciously reject our old way of life, our old sinful desires, and choose to live life molded and formed by Christ.
Ephesians 4:22-24 – You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Colossians 3:9-10 – Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self. You are being renewed in knowledge according to the image of your Creator. (HCSB)
Romans 7:6 – But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.
Spring doesn’t make the choice to come in the natural world. It follows after winter as God designed it to at the creation of the world. Spring in our own hearts, however, comes from a conscious decision to choose Christ. It comes from letting go of our old deceitful desires, our lies, our bondage to the religious laws of man. Instead we are called to change the attitude of our minds, renew them in the knowledge of our Creator, and serve Christ in the new way of the Spirit.
It seems like a big job to choose life, but we don’t have to do it by ourselves. Just as God places a new spirit in our hearts when we accept Christ, He gives us the ability to choose life. Without His leading and influence we would all be lost, but God promises to enable us to choose life, to give us a new heart, to create a new spirit in us.
Ezekiel 11:19-20 – I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.
Do you have the new life that Christ has promised you? Has your spirit been made new? Because Jesus died for our sins and was raised from the dead we can have the new life He promised. It is a free gift. Take a look at the Salvation post to learn how to receive the free gift that Christ purchased for you on the cross. May you experience new life in Christ and become ALIVE in Him.