Summary: How to live as new people in Christ. 1- Speak the truth 2- Sin not in anger 3- Steal no longer 4- Speak no evil 5- Slander not
INTRO.- When you hear those words, "the new you," what do they mean to you? You may think, "it sounds good but I don’t believe it." Of course, we think in physical terms.
For example, did you ever watch that TV show, "Extreme Makeover?" I’m referring to the one where they take perhaps homely looking man or woman and give them an extreme physical makeover. Sometimes they give them a facelift, a lift here and a lift there, liposuction, a new hair dew, etc. And I admit, some of those people come out looking mighty good!
Anyway, it’s a nice thought but for most of us it’s not going to happen. We are not going to get a "new you" in that way!
Most of us would like a better or newer body. But as we know, it isn’t going to happen. All we can do is take care of ourselves, exercise, eat right and hope for the best.
I would like to be a "new me," but I realize there is only so much I can do and only so much body WILL DO!
I’ve been walking an hour a day to improve my cardiovascular health, and I’ve been eating better food and less food in order to lose some weight. BUT NO MATTER WHAT I DO, I WILL NEVER BE A "NEW ME."
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.
According to our text, the only real "new you" is going to take place in Christ.
II Cor. 5:17 "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
The "new you" is possible in Christ. When a person truly surrenders to Christ by faith and obedience they begin the process of becoming a new and different person.
THEY BEGIN THE PROCESS. Why would I say those words? Because Christian growth is a process that doesn’t happen overnight. Some things may well change overnight but some things take time and prayer and God’s grace to overcome.
Did you change overnight? Have you changed for the better? I bet it’s taken many years, many prayers, and most of all, God’s grace!
Put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Like Christ. Like God. God wants you to be like Him and like Christ. Why? Because that would be your best person or self.
ILL.- Longfellow could take a worthless sheet of paper, write a poem on it, and make it worth $6,000—that’s genius.
- Some artists can take a fifty-cent piece of canvas, paint a picture on it, and make it worth $1,000—that’s art.
But God can take a worthless, sinful life, wash it in the blood of Christ, put His Spirit in it, and make it a blessing to humanity—that’s salvation.
PROP.- According to our text, how are we to live as new people in Christ? These are qualities that we should work at it.
1- Speak the truth
2- Sin not in anger
3- Steal no longer
4- Speak no evil
5- Slander not
1. SPEAK THE TRUTH
25Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body.
ILL.- A Baptist pastor was walking down the street when he came upon a group of about a dozen boys, all of them between 10 and 12 years of age. The group surrounded a dog. Concerned the boys were hurting the dog, he went over and asked, "What are you doing with that dog?"
One of the boys replied, "This dog is just an old neighborhood stray. We all want him, but only one of us can take him home. So we’ve decided that whichever one of us can tell the biggest lie will get to keep the dog."
The Baptist preacher was shocked. "You boys shouldn’t be having a contest telling lies!" he exclaimed. He then launched into a 10-minute sermon against lying, beginning, "Don’t you boys know it’s a sin to lie?" and ending with, "Why, when I was your age, I never told a lie."
There was dead silence for about a minute. Just as the preacher was beginning to think he’d gotten through to them, the smallest boy gave a deep sigh and said, "All right, give him the dog."
The truth is: most of have told some lies in life whether we realized it or not. The realization is the problem.
ILL.- "I don’t dig into people’s private lives. I never have." Ross Perot’s brief statement on ABC News in July 1992 was meant to end allegations that he secretly investigated his presidential campaign volunteers. The allegations ended, but not the way Perot intended. Within hours, irrefutable evidence appeared that proved Perot had hired others to probe his people’s pasts. By the next day, there was no question on anyone’s mind: Ross Perot lied.