Summary: Paul understood that his yesterday did not determine his tomorrow.
25 Minutes to a New You
2 Cor. 5:16-17
July 13, 2008 FBC, Chester Dr. Mike Fogerson, Speaker
A Men, most of your mothers-in-law don’t think you’re good enough to be married to their little girl. Ladies, most of your mothers-in-law don’t think you’re good enough to be married to their baby boy.
1 It’s hard to change the way people see us, and we see others.
2 (IL) One springtime sometime before the Civil War, a boy in search of work came to Worthy Taylor’s prosperous Ohio farm.
a Mr. Taylor didn’t know much more than the boy’s name was Jim, and he gave him a job.
b Jim spent the summer cutting stove wood, bringing in the cows, was useful in the kitchen, slept in the hayloft.
aa Before summer was over, Jim had fallen in love with Taylor’s daughter.
bb The father refused to allow him to marry his daughter (no money, no good name, & a very poor future).
cc Disappointed, he packed up his carpetbag & disappeared
c 35 years passed before Taylor began to tear down his old barn to make way for a new one. In the rafters above the hayloft he discovered that Jim had carved his full name-James A. Garfield, then President of the United States.
d It’s hard to change...
B One of Paul’s biggest hurdles at Corinth was how people viewed him.
1 He’s not a real apostle, teacher, we know how he rolled back in the day.
2 When Paul saw Jesus for Who Jesus was, Paul received a personal makeover.
a "I am crucified"...new creature, old things passed away
b He saw Jesus differently, church differently, lost people
bb For me to live is Christ, & to die is gain
3 Paul understood that his yesterday/past did not determine his tomorrow/future
C Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. 17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 2 Cor 5:16-17 (NASB)
I Understand the way God sees us
A When a person becomes a believer by faith, there is a new act of creation on God’s part.
1 The old things have passed away (passed out of existence)
a Those "old things" are what characterized/conditioned our lives before we got saved (B.C. days)
b There is an antithesis between old/new things, born of the flesh/born of the Spirit
2 New things have come (perfect indicative, completed in the past, but has continuing results)
a What new things?
aa When I was saved, my body/physical appearance was unaffected
bb My body/physical appearance does not determine who I am before God.
b I am new in virtue of my relationship with God.
aa I didn’t have to do a thing to be in a new relationship with God.
bb I had to stop trying to do some things...moral conduct, better behavior, more religious, go to church.
c He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit...Titus 3:5 (NASB)
aa When we accept by faith the grace & mercy of God through Christ, the Holy Spirit creates a new life that was not there before.
bb God didn’t give you something refurbished, pre-owned, redecorated.
cc I didn’t have to "do" anything, but I had to be somewhere...in Christ.
B I’m new because I’m in Christ.
1 For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. Col 3:3 (NASB)
a Jesus died so that we might live (Amen), He also died so that we might die.
b You are in Christ, and Christ is in God...where does that put you?
2 "I’m trying to find myself"-you get in Jesus, and you’ll know exactly where you are.
Our new relation to God brings us into a new relation, not just with Him, but also with the world around us. Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. (transitional sentence)
II Understand the way God wants us to see others. Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer
A My new relationship with God should not/cannot be without effect on my behavior.
1 The principle area of the changed life is the way we see other people.