So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
2 Corinthians 5:16,17
The New is Here!
At the beginning of a new year, we desperately want an answer to this question: Can people change? That is, given enough time and effort, can I change my old habits and habitual sins? And, in a world characterized by selfishness and tribalism, can I change the way that I view other people?
Well, consider the man behind today’s Bible passage. Twenty years before he wrote these words, the apostle Paul was “a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man” (1 Timothy 1:13). He hated Jesus and Jesus’ disciples, so he hunted them down and arrested them.
All that changed when Jesus blinded him with light, spoke to him from heaven, and sent a man named Ananias to preach the good news to him, to baptize him, and to shine the light of faith in his heart. That’s how Paul became “a herald and an apostle and a teacher of the true faith” (1 Timothy 2:7).
Paul is proof that people really do change. And God continues to change people to this very day. When you become a Christian, God changes you from dead in sin to alive in Christ. Because of Christ, when God the Father looks at you, he sees someone clothed in the perfection of his Son.
Because of Christ, when you look at other people, what do you see? That every single person—regardless of their age, their race, their economic status, or their politics—is someone for whom Christ died.
The Son of God does not see you as some hopeless, lost cause of a sinner. You are an heir of eternal life, and that changes the way you look at life. You don’t have to be selfish anymore. You don’t have to be angry anymore. You don’t have to lose control anymore. You have been changed. You have been forgiven. The new is here.
Lord Jesus, thank you for making me a new creation. Please give me strength to live like it. Amen.