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Exhortations

New Creation

Living in the New Self

Paul lived in the first century, and while writing his epistles, he did not consider it universal; he thought it was only the first-century Church he was trying to evangelize. Paul instructed the people at that time to live within the new creation. Paul taught of no more cutting of the skin or Circumcision, but instead, he introduced Circumcision of the heart, which we know is not literal but more spiritual. He also told his converts that they were not under the laws of the Old but under Grace. Paul focused his teachings on Faith and Jesus’s life and resurrection. He also taught that Jesus is the Lord of the world. One of his controversial teachings is justification by Faith alone. Paul’s impact on Christianity is evident in his epistles, which became the most influential teachings in Christian history.

It comes from Paul’s letters, the most influential New Testament books after the Gospels.

What is new for us today compared to what they were before us? We are better today being the sons and daughters of God than the relationship we had before as servants. Regarding being a new creation? We do not have that much issue today. Catholics and Protestants believe that being a new creation is the old self becoming a new man or the old self (character, attitude, and behavior) becoming new, a significant change. Paul’s 2 Corinthians 5:16–17 reads: “So if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!”

When Jesus asked by the Pharasse, he answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to Spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.”(John 3:5-7). Our mother gave physical birth, and it was a one-time occurrence. Once out of the womb, we breathe that Spirit of life and cry, the dependency on physical things. Born again literally means born from above, a direct message to a non-believer whose change of mind can lead to eternal life. We need the Holy Spirit to give us a spiritual birth, which confirms that we are now being born from above. 

Paul is not specific to an individual’s New Creations teachings but to the whole community of the Corinthians. Suppose we consider that it also applies to us. It needs strong Faith and a good reason for acceptance—the same person with a new approach in life- New Creation.

In comparison, Jesus’ born-again teaching is specific to an individual, a Pharisee, a leader of the Jews, and a non-believer that Jesus was the Messiah. A Samaritan woman in the wells of Salvation, Jesus told her she would not thirst again once she drank it. Born Again has a spiritual notion at the moment of conversion when we go from being separated from God to a renewed relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

The new creature looks outwardly toward Christ instead of inwardly toward self. Born Again, wash away the sins of the past and become sons or daughters of God. What it also means is that our sinful nature no longer dominates us. It means the Holy Spirit dwells within us, and when the Spirit enters our body, it also says God is with us. Thank you, Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit that defines who we are in the Godhead.

Bishop Joseph

Bishop Joseph Vitug, Ph.D. - Bishop Emeritus

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