“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” – 2 Corinthians 5:17 (ESV)
Transformation. An unequivocally beautiful and humbling experience.
If you have experienced redemption of the highest form – salvation, the deliverance from sin and death, offered to us through the sacrifice of our Savior – then you should also have experienced transformation.The kind of transformation that occurs when you, a sinner, are washed clean by the blood of Jesus Christ. The old you passes away – “behold, the new has come”.
Galatians 2:20 says, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (ESV)
When we experience this kind of transformation – this crucifixion of ourselves and this new life we have in Christ – we no longer bear the same identity as we did before.
In March, we’re going to do a series on ‘identity’, where we will dive more into this idea of being reborn into a new identity, status, and family. But this month, we’re talking about our role in the church versus our role in the world, and how our identity plays into that. It might seem a little backwards, but bear with us. With this series, we hope to help you understand the differences between being a believer and being an unbeliever, and to help guide you as you continue interacting with, and navigating, the world and the church.
Addressing our newfound identity, our transformation, our redemption…this is the starting point. As Christians, we have a new perspective on things; a new way of seeing things. As my pastor has put it many times, we are no longer viewing the world through the lens of the world, but through the lens of Christ. Not only does (or should) our view change, but our actions, feelings, and beliefs change.
Our selfish ambition becomes Gospel-centered motivation; our temporary happiness becomes everlasting joy. It changes the way we fellowship with other Christians, and it changes the relationships that we have with unbelievers. Our habits change, how we engage the world changes…even how we date changes! And in fact, these are not just changes and/or differences that I chose to mention at random; these are some of the topics we’ll be talking about this month.
Live It Out
You may have noticed that we have a new section at the end of our articles, called ‘Live It Out’. This is something we just started this year, and we’re pretty excited about it. We don’t want our viewers to read our articles and leave without knowing how to apply them – that’s what this section is for.
Since this article is more of an introduction, I don’t have a normal application for you. However, I have a task for you. I would greatly encourage you to keep up with this month’s series. And next months, and the month after that…you get the point. But seriously…we exist to come alongside people – to encourage them, challenge them, and point them back to Christ. We want to take our faith and our experiences, and we want to share them with you. We learn and grow as we write, and you learn and grow as you read (or at least we hope so).
Our writers have experienced the same kind of transformation I talked about in this article, and we want you to experience that too. And if you already have, then this series is perfect for you. So, stick around. I promise it’ll be worth it.