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Newness Is A Powerful Spiritual Weapon by Mike Ramey
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For many years, much of our evangelistic teaching to new converts is that the Christian is ‘a sinner saved by grace’. In fact, much of our evangelistic outreach STILL paints a picture that Christ can save, but he cannot change one from being a sinner to a saint--even though a cursory reading of the Scriptures does not convey nor support that view. In the battle for souls, one of the more powerful spiritual weapons is scarcely held up for review among many in the church, and that is the weapon of newness of a converted soul.
‘A sinner saved by grace’ has a woefully glaring omission. Once one becomes a Christian, they are a new being in Christ. II Corinthians 5:17 reads: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” The newness aspect of being a Christian; being a saint of God is a powerful weapon against sin and sinners. Everyone craves a second chance. Everyone craves to be able to start life afresh and new.
Becoming one with Jesus Christ will accomplish both of these.
In the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus himself point out the evidence of one becoming a new creature upon salvation, by pointing out that new wine cannot be effectively held in an old bottle. Mark 2:22 (KJV) contains the best rendering of his commentary: “And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new bottles.”
Now, we as Christians are familiar with the term ‘filled with the Spirit’. The Holy Spirit is that ‘new wine’. A sinner MUST have a new heart, and this is created by their clearly hearing the gospel message, repenting of their sin, a desire to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and accepting his free gift of salvation and allowing Jesus to take up residence in their heart and soul. Thus, there is a new heart, a new spirit, and a new person…even though the old body exists to ‘hold’ the newness of Christ. Still the old body is being changed from the inside out, day by day, growing in the grace of God and conforming to Jesus as Lord, and under the power of the Holy Spirit in one package.
They also become a saint of God.
The term ‘sinner saved by grace’ does not exist in the Scriptures, as far as I can find. There is more evidence of one being NEW in the Scriptures. Put another way, the four Gospels puts forth the gospel message. The Book of Acts puts forth the history of the first century church, and the spread of and power of the gospel as it expands throughout the world. The 21 epistles teach how one is to live their new life in Christ. The Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ tells all what is to come.
We are in the last days.
Why have I brought this matter to the surface as a means of fighting in spiritual warfare? Only the new in Christ can use the weapons of the spiritual armor. IF I have not been changed; if I have not been ‘made new’ by the Word and promise of Christ, then I have no right to expect to be fitted for my armor to fight the wiles of Satan and his demons. My old unconverted spirit would not be able to hold the new spirit, and I could not be ‘salt’ and ‘light’ if I were still ‘dead and stinking’ in the power of my flesh.
Why have I also brought this matter to the surface as a means of an evangelistic weapon? Simply put, in our last days, men and women and young people will do anything to fill that creation-placed hole in the human heart that has been left for God to take up residence. Anything, that is, other than surrender to the leading of the Holy Spirit to accept Jesus.
In bringing this matter before the saints, it is a hope to increase wisdom of those who not only fight the forces of darkness, but those who also fight for souls. A portion of Proverbs 11:30 (KJV) underscores the following: “…he that winneth souls is wise.” It is time that those of us who have been ‘beaten down’ spiritual, and timid in our soul winning realize that we have the edge. We are not merely patched-up sinners representing a ‘barely hanging-on savior’. We instead have the blessed hope. We are NEW in the power of God through Jesus Christ and fueled by the Holy Spirit.
Here’s an old story that I remember a preacher sharing. There was a Roman who enjoyed the high life. He did it all! One day, he heard the gospel message and gave himself fully to Jesus Christ. Out on the streets of Rome, one fine afternoon, this man was enjoying a walk, when an old flame spied him…and called out to him: “Sirus, it is I!”
The woman chased the man down, and finally caught him. She mentioned again her siren’s call: “Sirus, it is I!”. The Roman looked at the attractive woman, and told her: “Yes, but it is NOT I.” The Roman walked on, leaving the woman scratching her head.
You are NEW, fellow saint. This weapon for both spiritual warfare and soul winning gives you the edge. As you daily study the Scriptures and walk in the new life, you will discover a fullness of spirit that you did not know that you had. It is NOT you; but it IS Christ living IN you that makes you NEW! Praise HIS name!
Mike Ramey is a Minister, Book Reviewer, P-School Ranger, Modern Street Gangs Specialist and Syndicated Columnist who lives in Indianapolis, Indiana. “The Ramey Commentaries” is one of a variety of columns that Ramey has in cyberspace. To drop him a line…or a whine…the address is still the same:
©2019 Barnstorm Communications.
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