January 10, 2013

Being Set Free

When Micah was born and the weeks following when he was in the newborn stage (i.e. he looked like a newborn), I thought he was the most beautiful baby boy ever born to humankind on Planet Earth in all of existence.

I literally could not get over how beautiful he was. I couldn't believe that I was so blessed to be able to give birth to such a beautiful son. I just wondered at the awe others must have felt as well. Obviously.

(I'm speaking in just a tiny bit of Hyperbolese.)

But when I look back on pictures of him from that time he actually really just looked like a pretty average newborn. Wrinkly. Semi-bald. Squinty. Scrawny. A little veiny.

 This one's really just for my Heart Palpitation's sake, that he used to be so wee.

What's my point?

(I have one.)

If you have believed by faith in the good news of Jesus Christ and turned to him in repentance, you are a new creation.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2nd Corinthians 5:17

Jesus' life for yours. The right to be a child of God, righteous and holy in his eyes.

For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:3

For our sake, he made him to be sin who knew no sin so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2nd Corinthians 5:21

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. John 1:12

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1st John 1:9

He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing and regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:5-7

So what does this have to do with my child's newborn pictures?

I saw Micah through the lens of my parental love. It painted everything about him to me. He was beautiful. I didn't see wrinkles and veins and scrawny legs. I saw a beautiful, perfect creation.

In a similar way, as followers of the Way of Jesus Christ, God sees us through His Son, perfect and holy and deeply loved.

Now I don't mean to imply that this is a perfect correlation, because there is none like God in all the earth (Isaiah 40:25). But throughout Scripture the imagery of a loving father and mother towards their child is often used to describe God's love and care toward us. 

Scripture makes clear that when we've turned to Christ in faith, we are no longer who we used to be. We're clean, washed, pure, holy, now and forevermore his adopted child.

Does it mean we always act that way? Of course not. That's the sanctification process and it's lifelong. But the important distinction is that even though we will still sin, we will never not be his child again. Our new identity is as his son or daughter, clothed in Christ's righteousness, holy in God's eyes.

If you've trusted in Christ, you've been made new. Don't believe the lie any longer that if God only knew, he would change his mind. He loves you and he's made you free and you have a new identity. Walk in it. 

If you've never trusted in Christ, I pray today is the day that all things are made new in your life through Christ by faith. 

For freedom Christ has set us free... Galatians 5:1a

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