Summary: God is always wanting to do something new in us.
Text: 2 Corinthians 5:11-13 Title: What’s new with you?
1. We are called to give others the message of renewal (v17)
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”
Now suppose this afternoon or later on this week you and I were to bump into a good friend that we hadn’t seen for years and they said; “It’s been so many years, what’s new with you?” How would we respond?
No doubt we might be tempted to give the typical response;
• "Nothing much!"
Because God very much wants to renew everyone who is in Christ there is always something he wants to renew within you and me.
I want us to look at 6 things found in 2 Corinthians 5:11-21 that God always wants to renew in you, me and everyone who is in Christ.
The first 3 we will look at this week and the last 3 we will look at next week.
1.God always wants to renew my conscience. (v11)
“Since then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience”
One of the very first areas that God always wants to renew in me is my conscience. Why? Because my conscience is the part of me that distinguishes between what’s right and what’s wrong. Because I was born a sinner my conscience is the first thing to go wrong in my life. From the moment I am born my natural bent is to do what is wrong rather than what is right. Every one of us can identify with the words of the Apostle Paul found in Romans 7:15;“The things I don’t want to do I do and the things I want to do I don’t do.”
Now before one becomes a Christian you might decide the best thing to do for your conscience is to change what is right or wrong or better yet do away with what is right and wrong.Let’s do away with the 10 commandments.
Let’s have people decide for themselves what is right and wrong.
Illustration: Dead End Street. Speed limit sign. 115 miles per hour.
God’s answer is to renew my conscious.
1.Sending Jesus to die for all the things I have done and will do wrong in my life.
“God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them…” (2 Cor. 5:19)
•Jesus reconciles and redeems my conscious on the Cross
2.Giving me the ability to distinguish between what is right and wrong.
A.It’s always plain to God what is right and wrong.
“What we are is plain to God.”
B.God wants us to know what is right and wrong.
“And I hope it is also plain to your conscience.”
1, By giving us the word of God that tells us what is right and wrong
““All scripture is God- breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness…” (2 Timothy 3:16)
2. By placing in us the fear of the Lord
“Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men.”
Definition: Reverence, respect, honor shown to Christ or God in the sense of a deep and reverential awareness of accountability.
“Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and soul, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” (2 Cor. 7:1)
Most people really don’t know what it is like to grow up knowing the fear of the lord. And trying to persuade people to fear the Lord is not an easy task. But we need to fear the lord because the verse tells that “what we are is plain to God.” We can’t hide what we are from God. God knows everything there is to know about us.
2.God always wants to renew my heart (v12)
“We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than what is in the heart.”
The second thing that God always wants to renew in me is my heart. Why? Because my heart is the part of me that governs all of my behavior.
“Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45).
God wants to renew my heart in order to change what I say and what I do.
What is so wrong with my heart that God finds it so important to try to change it? My heart has the wrong kind of pride rather than the right kind of pride in it. There is nothing wrong with having pride as long as it is the right kind of pride. In fact we need more of it.