In Christ A New Creature

Photo by Yuichi Kageyama on Unsplash

2 Corinthians 5:14-17 For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: 15 And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again. 16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more. 17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Opening: I loved being in the Air Force, and working around the bombers and fighters that brave men and women fly to protect our great nation. I started out as a “Food Service Technician”, but after 7 years I was cross trained to actually work on these aircraft.

I never worked on propeller type aircraft, but on jets. Jet engines produce more thrust, and can cause the aircraft to fly much faster than the older “props” could. One concern we always had when working on and around jets was “foreign object damage”. We signed out our tool kits, and counted every piece before and after a job. If a tool was left where it could be “sucked up” by the jet turbines, it could literally destroy the whole aircraft. Before launching the aircraft we walked the length and breadth of the flight line, insuring there were no loose objects that could be “sucked up” into the jet engine. If the engine breaks, the whole aircraft is broke!

Just as a piece of “foreign object” can “ground” a jet aircraft …

A Poor Understanding Of Salvation
Grounds” The Gospel

2 Corinthians 5:14 For the love of Christ constraineth us …

Word Study: Some of the old English of the King James often obscures the meaning of the verse. The word constraineth is the Greek συνέχω synéchō, {pronounced soon-ekh’-o}, which means “to hold together lest we fall to pieces, to control, to press on every side”. It is the love of God that holds God’s people together. Love is the driving force. The fact that God loves us with an unconditional love, and as we have been loved, we are to love others.

I hear people today say “Why do we need the Church? Why can’t we just gather online, or in a meta-verse, and worship God in virtual reality?” It is because those saved by the Gospel MUST manifest LOVE toward God and others. You cannot do that with a computer or telephone screen.

Listen to this test for the genuineness of faith.

1 John 4:7-12 (ESV) Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.

In the text I just read to you, the Apostle John used the word some form of the word “Love” thirteen times. Do you think he is trying to tell us something? Religion does not control the Church, nor the Christian life. Love does. Love expressed does. This is why Satan has worked so hard to redefine “love” in our world today. To the lost, “love” means whatever benefits or satisfies ME. But this is not love, but selfishness and self absorption.

When the Apostle wrote, Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love, he was not speaking of the love of the world. The love of the world is a self love, a desire to gratify oneself above all others. The love of the world is selfish. The love of God is entirely selfless. What do we see when we look at the love of God? We read, the love of God was made manifest among us. God’s love was revealed to us. How? God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. Jesus Christ came into the world – God’s only Son – so that He might give us life. God loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. That word propitiation is the Greek ἱλασμός hilasmós, {pronounced hil-as-mos’}, which means “atonement, to covering for sin, that which pleases God”.

All of us are born into this world as sinners, dead in our trespasses, enslaved to the flesh. Jesus Christ died for all. Are all truly sinners? Aren’t babies innocent of sin? Aren’t there good and moral people in this world? Yes, there are good and moral people, and yes, babies are in a sense innocent, unknowing as to what is good or evil.

But none of us are right in God’s sight apart from the loving Gift of Jesus Christ.

Illustrate: So many people think they are better than others because of their breeding, or their lineage. Someone told Adrian Rogers one time that they traced their lineage all the way to the Mayflower. Adrian told them, “I traced my lineage even further back than the Mayflower. I come from a crooked farmer, and a drunken sailor.” What he was talking about is that he – and all of us – can trace our lineage back to a crooked farmer (Adam) and a drunken sailor (Noah). We all start out in the same place.

We are dead to God!

2 Corinthians 5:14 For the love of Christ {controls us/ holds us together}; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:

one died for all, then were all dead. Every person born into this life is born physically alive, but spiritually dead. We all fall short of God’s glory because we enter this life as a child of Adam. The Bible says:

Romans 3:23-25 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

Word Study: All fall short of God’s glory. All sin. All miss the mark of righteousness. But Jesus Christ came to be the propitiation or covering for our sin. The word propitiation, is the Greek ἱλασμός hilasmos, meaning the “atonement, the covering for sin, that which pleases God”.

Jesus Christ died for all. If there was a way to be righteous and accepted to God in our own power, then why did Christ die for all? There is no other way unto God but through faith in Jesus Christ. Our Jesus, in love with us while we were yet unlovable, died on the Cross of Calvary for everyone. The Scripture says:

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

We are all born into this world physically alive, but spiritually dead. For this reason Jesus tasted death for us all!

Hebrews 2:9 …. we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every {PERSON}.

Jesus died for our sins. He took on death, and dying on Calvary, became the death of death. What good news this is!

1 John 2:1-2 … My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: 2 And {Jesus} is the propitiation {hilasmos} for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

Jesus was born into this world to die for every person who has ever been born of woman. The love of God caused Him to send His Son to die for our sins.

But His death changes things.

The Saved Believer Is Called To Love & Live For Jesus

2 Corinthians 5:15 And that {Jesus} died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.

We are born again by faith in Jesus to live UNTO HIM! Not unto ourselves, but UNTO HIM!

Illustrate: The difference between the lost and the saved is that the saved live for Jesus. The saved love Jesus. The lost just love themselves. What happens every time a lost person gives a BIG CHECK to some charity? They call the news reporters. They get the check ENLARGED so all can see it. They put on a press conference, and show off the handing off of that check. It is not the LOVE OF CHRIST that drives them, but the LOVE OF SELF.

The old, lost creature, the unsaved person is dead in trespasses and in sins. The Christian is MADE ALIVE! Read with me:

Ephesians 2:1-6 (ESV) And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3 among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus

Before we met Jesus, we were old, dead creatures, following the same patterns as all the children of Adam do. Dead in trespasses and sins our “walk” or our pattern of life was to walk apart from God, while we followed the course of this world. As dead things, we followed after the Prince of Death. Dead things obey Satan rather than God. Dead things do what satisfy ourselves first. Dead things do not love their neighbor. Dead things are self absorbed. Dead things decay. When you were dead in trespasses and in sins, you lived according to darkness and Satan. But if we are alive, saved by faith in Christ Jesus, then we “should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again”.

The lost person follows the pathway that all lost people follow. They wander far from God. The saved person, the one who has received Christ as Lord and Savior, should want to live their lives for Him!

You were saved to live your life for Him, for Jesus. You were saved to love Jesus and love one another. You were saved to be indwelt by the Spirit of Christ, not by the Spirit of disobedience. Jesus did not give His life on Calvary so that we could be just like those without Him. No, Jesus said:

John 10:9-11 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. 10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. 11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

Jesus wants us to have life, amore abundant. Life. We are not called to just exist, but to walk with our Jesus every single day.

We Show Love To Jesus And Others
By Ministering Reconciliation

2 Corinthians 5:18-20 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

Word Study: Five times the Apostle uses some form of “reconciliation” in this text. We are “reconciled” to God and to one another through Jesus Christ. The word reconciled is the Greek καταλλάσσω katallássō, {pronounced kat-al-las’-so}, which means “to bring together in harmony, to restore to fellowship. In Adam, we were far from Jesus. While we chased after the things of this world, the Lord was far from us. He was not far away physically, for in him we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:28). God is everywhere, and there is no where where God is not. As David said, “Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?” (Psalm 139:7). God is everywhere. He said, “those that seek Me early shall find Me” (Proverbs 8:17). God was far from us – but not because of His failure, but ours.

Once we received Jesus as Lord and Savior we were “reconciled to God”. He is now near to us, not far away. Listen Beloved, we are not all children of God. We are all creations of God, but only those who have received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are His children. We who have received Jesus are no longer enemies of God. We are told in …

Romans 5:6-11 (ESV) For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— 8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

The death of Jesus on Calvary covered our sins. Covering our sins, we are reconciled to God, that is, there is peace between the believer and God. While we were ENEMIES, Christ died for us.

We love our enemies as Jesus loved us when we were enemies. We share the means to reconciliation through Jesus to whosoever will hear.

Are You, Dear Soul, “In Christ”?

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore IF any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

in Christ” we are “new creature”. We are not just reconciled to God (for He is our Father), but we have the ministry of reconciliation. We know that …

Mark 12:27 {God} is not the God of the DEAD, but the God of the LIVING.

Dead creatures – children of Adam – serve the world, the flesh, and the devil. Living creatures – those “born again … by the Word of God, which lives and abides forever” (1 Peter 1:23) – these serve the Lord. We are not to live solely unto ourselves, but unto Him Who died for us, and rose again(2 Corinthians 5:15).

If anyone is IN CHRIST, we are new creatures. If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature. in Christ! These two wonderful words – in Christ– are found 78 times in Scripture. What should be think of these words?

  • The New Creature, the Christian, is “in Christ” like Noah and his family were in the Ark. Oh, God made provision for any who would to come into the Ark. For 120 years Noah preached salvation by faith in Christ. Noah found the grace of God (Genesis 6:8), but the world around him did not. All about Noah people were “in themselves” and “in the world”, yet refused to get in the Ark. God told Noah that destruction was coming. God told Noah to heed His command, to build an Ark, and to get on the boat. Judgment was coming. Then one day, it did. As judgment rained down on the earth, Noah and his family were in the Ark. They floated above the Divine Judgment. Beloved, if you are “in Christ”, then like Noah and his family, you will be carried above the waves of God’s punishment!
  • The New Creature, the Christian, is “in Christ” like the ancient Israeli was in the city of refuge. God made a provision in His Law that protected the ancient Israelite from vengeance. God allowed His priests to establish “cities of refuge” that a sinner could run to. While in that city, the sinner was protected from the blood avenger, and his case was heard. “The Eternal God is our Refuge; and underneath are the everlasting arms! He thrusts out the enemy from before me.” (Deuteronomy 33:27) “God is my Rock; in Him will I trust: He is my Shield, the Horn of my Salvation, my High Tower, my Refuge, my Savior! (2 Samuel 22:3). In God is my salvation and my glory: the Rock of my strength, and my Refuge, is in God! (Psalm 62:7).
  • If you are “in Christ”, you have access to God like the High Priest had in the ancient Holy of Holies. You can come boldly before the Throne of Grace. In Christ, God dwells in you. You do not go to a temple, but you ARE a Temple. God lives in the Temple of your body. “know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
  • If you are “In Christ”, you are attached to Jesus like the branch is attached to the Vine. Jesus said in John 15:5, “ I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing”. We who are “in Christ” drink of the spirit of Christ. Our fruit is not hatred, strife, envy, sexual perversion, lying, or anything that resembles death. The fruit of the believer in Christ is “love, joy, peace, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance – against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23).
  • If I am “In Christ”, then I am part of the “workmanship of God, created in Christ Jesus to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10). Jesus Christ is my cornerstone, and we who believe are “lively stones, built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. Each believer, saved, and a New Creature is a priest before God. We lovingly serve our Lord on this earth until the day He calls us home to be with Him in glory. As His people we are assured that death has no hold on us.
  • If I am “In Christ”, then I know this life is but the beginning of a much greater life to come in glory!

2 Corinthians 5:1-4 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: 3 If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. 4 For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.

When a Christian dies physically, what happens spiritually is both beautiful and amazing. We have a an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. We have a glorified body awaiting us, and the promise of eternity with the Lord Jesus Christ. What a glorious truth this is. We are not burdened with how short this life is, but we who are in Christ groan, wanting to be clothed upon with our new residence.

Oh, come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Are you “in Christ”? If so, you are a part of Heaven’s Fabric. Faith and love have come together in your life as warp and weave. God bids you tell others about Jesus, to tell the world that He is “the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no one comes to the Father but by Him” (John 14:6). If you are not “in Christ”, then there is no better day to be saved. Now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2). May God move you to a glorious walk with Him this very day. Amen and Amen!

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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