24 March 2014
If someone where to ask about the differences between Christianity and the other religions of the world, we would hear many different replies distinguishing the uniqueness of Christianity from other world religions.
One of the most distinguishing marks of Christianity is the belief that when we put our faith in Jesus Christ, we are also putting aside our old way of life. Jesus did not just command us to do good, but his first call to his disciples and to us, was to leave our old way of life behind and follow him. Each of Jesus’ disciples had left their old way of life to follow Jesus.
Some of us focus too much on the difficulties of behaving after becoming a Christian – we can’t swear, we can’t do this and do that, we have to go to church, listen to worship songs, read the bible – basically a list of dos and don’ts. But when Jesus said “Come follow me”, part of this was also telling us that we can also leave behind everything that went wrong before. The focus of the gospel is not the dos and don’ts, it’s a permissive gospel – it’s a gospel about freedom and hope. Mistakes may have been made. Regrets, hurts and trauma haunt many people today. No matter who we speak to, each person has a past and some baggage. Jesus’ call to leave our old life behind is not just a call to selfless living, but also a call toward complete freedom and forgiveness from our past hurts, regrets, mistakes and even traumatic experiences. Some believers experience a renewal immediately, some take more time, but there will be a day when everything is renewed and even the bodies of the followers of Jesus will be different. The bible says that our nature will be transformed and we will be like the angels in heaven.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corinthians 5:17
“Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “1 Corinthians 15:54
This claim is a beautiful revelation that God has given us. We are immediately guaranteed the cancellation of our old mistakes and given a new hope to live for and live toward. This is the gift of God, to which i rejoice and live my life toward.
Lord Jesus, thank you for the cross and your willingness to die in my place. My old way of life has been cancelled and annulled and i am now no longer associated with my past but you instead associate me with my future glory. You look not at my past but my future, you believe in me and have yourself put faith in me for dying for me. I am forgiven and i am given new hope in you, a hope that is good and a hope that will not fail. Thank you Lord Jesus, thank you.