Sermons

Summary: God promises to do a new thing within us. Here are four new things we can look forward to in the new year

TEXT: ACTS 16:1-15

TITLE: “FACING THE NEW YEAR IN A NEW WAY” (updated for 2008)

OPEN: A. It’s almost February. Why are talking about the New Year?

--Isn’t the newness of the new year kind of wearing off?

1. I’ve found that talking about the new year when it starts is kind of cliché and doesn’t do much

good

2. Now that we’re into the new year and have a better handle on what we really want to do and

want to accomplish, we can legitimately talk about what we need to do

B. Here is a concept that we can be sure of as live out the year 2008 A.D.

1. We’ve got 24 more hours this year than we’ve had in the previous three years

--most years have 8,760 hours but this year we have 8,784 hours available to us

2. If you work 40 hours each week and sleep 8 hours a night, you will use up 5,008 hours

3. Take away another760 or so hours spent eating

4. That leaves us a balance of discretionary time of just a little under 3,000 hours

5. It’s important to recognize that those hours are a gift from God

--It’s even more important to consider how you will use those hours for God

6. You can count on two things this year of 2008:

a. God will be present in each one of those hours

b. God wants to do a “new thing” in you in this new year

C. The Bible speaks many times concerning “new things” and “new ways”

1. Mt. 9:16-17 – “No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull

away from the garment, making the tear worse. Neither do men pour new wine into old

wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined.

No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”

--warns about putting the new and the old together

2. People were astounded to hear that the Gospel message is something new and fresh

a. Mk. 1:27 – “The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, ‘What is this? A new

teaching—and with authority! He even gives orders to evil spirits and they obey him.’”

b. Acts 17:19 – “Then they took him and brought him to a meeting of the Areopagus, where

they said to him, ‘May we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting?’”

3. God promised a new testament or covenant

a. Jer. 31:31 – “‘The time is coming, declares the LORD, ‘when I will make a new covenant

with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.’”

b. Jesus instituted this new covenant

--Mt. 26:27-28 – “Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, ‘Drink

from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the

forgiveness of sins.’”

4. We become a new self and a new attitude in Christ

--Eph. 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.”

5. We also become a new creation

a. 2 Cor. 5:17 – “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the

new has come!”

b. Gal. 6:15 – “Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new

creation.”

6. The Bible mentions other “new”things

a. new song

b. new job (ambassador for Christ)

c. new family (the church)

d. new heart and a new spirit

7. Jesus implicitly states that everything under His control is supposed to become new

--Rev. 21:5 – “He who was seated on the throne said, I am making everything new!’”

D. What does the Bible mean when it speaks of things becoming new?

1. In both the Hebrew and the Greek, it means new in regard to freshness

--in the sense that God has rebuilt or renewed the subject of that descriptive wor

2. How do we get to be new?

--The Bible tells us that we become new by putting aside the old

a. Is. 43:18-19a – (God speaking) “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am

doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?”

b. Phil 3:13b-14 – “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on

toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus..”

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