Monday, May 30, 2011

Put On Your New Clothes

When we come to Christ, there is a radical transformation that takes place which Jesus calls being "born again."  One of His apostles describes it, "Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too may walk in a new way of life." (Rom.6:4)  He then describes the quality and scope of this life we have been given in Christ, saying, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come." (2Cor.5:17)

The gift is like a new wardrobe. We have received it, now we must open it and begin to put on this new clothing. It is a daily choice we make, we will either put on our old life over this new life we have been given or we will put on the gift of Christ.  The apostle writes about this contrasting wardrobe, telling us "But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no plans to satisfy the fleshly desires." (Rom.13:14)

Once we have been born again all things are new, new things have come, and we are radically changed. Yet, the only set of clothes we have ever been comfortable with is the old set. So, we must make the choice to put on what Christ has given. This change must take place in what we think so that what we do will reflect who we now are in Christ.  We know how to think and behave like people who were not born again. Now we must continually unpack the new clothing, given to us in Christ, and described in detail in His Word. "Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God." (Rom.12:2)

One of the places where Jesus describes this new wardrobe is found in great detail in the 5th through the 7th chapters of Matthew. It is a sermon He preached to a crowd of people on a hillside one day.  Read it, then put it on.