Five Minutes in the Word: 2 Corinthians 5:17-18

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The Christian message is that “in Christ” we are made new. This is the work of God alone, who calls us His children and who transforms our reality to match our new identity.

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. 
2 Corinthians 5:17-18

I’m a book nerd. I love them. All kinds. Fiction. History. Thrillers. Classics. But I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Christian authors who’ve shaped my knowledge of God through their words. One of the most influential in my life has been C.S. Lewis. In this book, Mere Christianity, Lewis teaches the essential tenets of the Christian faith with these words:

“The Son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God."

This quote beautifully and succinctly explains today’s verse. In 2 Corinthians 5:17-18, we are told that we are a “new creation.” How? Jesus. The Son of God became a man and lived a sinless life. He experienced death and shame for us and overcame both by rising from the grave. When we put our hope in Him, we are identified with Him. His death becomes our death. His righteousness our righteousness. His new life, our new life.

“All this is from God.”

The hero of this story is God. I love that phrase, “all this is from God!” For His own glory, God pursues us, reconciles us and makes us new. Salvation was His idea. God is not trying to improve us with self-help theories or give us a set of rules to follow in order to become better people. Nope, the Christian message is that “in Christ” we are made new. This is a work of God alone, who calls us His children and transforms our reality to match our new identity.

This truth is often memorized but seldom realized. Most Christians live as if they still need to fix themselves first in order to be accepted. I pray today you would grasp the significance of these verses. In Christ Jesus, you are new! Because of Him, you are beloved. In Christ, you are completely free from your past. In Christ, we are fully known and fully loved by our Heavenly Father. And here’s the thing: we behave how we believe. So when you actually believe that God has made you new, you will begin to see that identity lived out in your reality.

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