Keep old things old and new things new!
As we draw nearer to Christmas and the New Year, we think of newness. The birth, the first coming of Jesus Christ as a Man to mankind, resulted in our having a new hope, a new covenant, and a new way of thinking and of treating ourselves and others. He proved that He is for us, that He is compassionate and personally interested in us enough to come to the earth in the form of a Baby and grow up eventually to manhood to demonstrate to us what He, God, is like. Then He died for us and put away all of our sins and all that was “old” by the once-for-all sacrifice of His own Life, shedding His own Blood. He thus paved the way for ALL things to become absolutely NEW, replacing all that is old.He paved the way for ALL things to become absolutely NEW, replacing all that is old. Click To Tweet
Be blind to the former things and behold the new!
In Isaiah 42:9 we read: “Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; … “. Then in Isaiah 43:18,19: “Do not earnestly remember the former things; neither consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs forth; do you not perceive and know it, and will you not give heed to it? … ” The Lord then elaborates on this declaration in verse 25: “I, even I, am He Who blots out and cancels your transgressions for My own sake, and I will not remember your sins.” It is so clear what the Lord has done with the old, and the Lord repeats many times in His Word how He has dealt with our sins. For example, David wrote in Psalm 103:10, “He has not dealt with us after our sins nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.” In other words, He has not made us pay for them, and He implores us to forget them, once confessed and cleansed away (I John 1:9), and to believe that “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” (Psalm 103:12)
” … this one thing I do …”
The Apostle Paul owned the truths mentioned above, as seen in Philippians 3:12-14: ” … I press on to lay hold of … and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus … has laid hold of me and made me His own. … one thing I do [it is my one aspiration]: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the … prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.” (Amplified) But it is so easy for us to get fixated on the things of the past, weighing us down to the point that we just can’t seem to go forward. Let us receive Grace to be reminded continually that our past is GONE, that we are cleansed of it, and that our Omniscient God remembers it no more and doesn’t relate to it at all! If indeed we are “as He is” right now in this life on earth, ought we not to do as He does, remembering what He remembers and forgetting what He has forgotten?!
” … a new creature altogether …”
Kenneth Wuest’s translation of II Corinthians 5:17 sums up all of the above writing clearly,succinctly, magnificently: “The antiquated, out-of-date things [which do not belong to the new life in Christ Jesus] have passed away. Behold, ALL things have become new in quality.” (emphasis mine) These words are fuel for forward motion in the Kingdom and purpose of God while we are still pilgrims on this earth. Knowing and believing this Finished Work Truth we can indeed cry out (in Italian) “Andiamo avanti!” – “Let’s go forward!” However, if we neglect so great a truth, what could happen?
” Remember Lot’s wife!” (Luke 17:32)
“Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matt.6:21) We could also say that where your heart is, so will your eyes, your perception be. The will and the eyes of Lot’s wife were fixated on and followed what was deeply entrenched in her heart: the earthly, carnal pleasures and life-style of Sodom and Gomorrah. If we don’t, by Grace through faith, keep the past where it belongs – behind us – and our heart’s gaze away from it, we too can get almost “obsessive-compulsive” regarding it. Such occupation with what has “passed away” can cause unhealthy fixation with guilt, fear, or shame, to the point that nothing about our lives “feels” or seems new. Oh, how the Lord Jesus wants us to know and believe the truth of the Finished Work! When we do, it sets us free; and because it is He Who makes us free, we are free indeed!
So by His Grace let us stand fast in this liberty to which He has called us (Galatians 5:1), and enjoy the privilege and the joy of believing, embracing and walking in what is new!
“Che ma fa?”
We close with a question: What more can be done?! Precisely what the Lord asked Israel in Isaiah 5:4, “What more could have been done to My vineyard that I have not done in it?” Let us receive Grace to set our faces like a flint to what He has done in us and for us; to not look back to what we or others have done in the past that would cause guilt, shame, or fear; to remember only what He remembers and forget what He has forgotten; and to live in and enjoy the Eternal Is of His Plan, Purpose and Provision in the present moment.