Walking in the Newness of Life

Romans 6:3-4 “We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”

 So, just what does it mean to walk in the “newness of life”?

 When we become members of God’s family, we not only receive eternal life in the future… we are invited to step into eternal life the very moment we put our trust in Jesus! Along with our new birth, we are invited into an ongoing celebration of “newness”! We can walk in this “Newness of life” everyday that we are in this old body! (No matter how old this body gets.) God’s mercies are new every morning… We can have newness of mind… new hope… new vision… new passion and new purpose!

This is extremely good news! But I feel like many may be missing out!

It’s like we’ve been given an invitation to a party and we’re excited to be welcomed in, but we never get past the foyer to enjoy the company of our host and everything else He has prepared for us.

 “Newness of life” is the opposite of our same-old, same-old, day in, day out, stagnant, self- centered, stuff collecting progression toward death. To walk in the newness of life is to celebrate singing a new song everyday as we grow, change and actively move ever closer to the Giver of life!

We have a lot of “newness” coming into our life this year as many changes are coming our way. Everyday we have a choice to celebrate the changes and embrace the “newness” or to stop moving forward, get stuck in our own little comfortable, stable, predictable world, and miss out on what God has for us.

 We could choose to get off this new path, but if we did, would God still love us? Absolutely!

Would He still use us in other ways? Yes, I’m pretty sure He would.

Would He offer us other opportunities like this? Maybe… Maybe not… I don’t know.

What I do know, is that He has opened this new door and said, “Come with me. This is the way, walk in it.” And if we want to follow Jesus and walk in the newness of life, we need to stick close to Him so we don’t miss anything!

Are you celebrating the newness of life that Jesus purchased for you? Or are you content to have fire insurance?

 Here are a couple questions to see if you might be missing out…

1)   Do I try to hang on to the old, comfortable ways I’ve always done things?

2)   Do I get anxious when things are changing around me?

3)   Do I cling to old habits, even when I know they serve no purpose or might even be bad for me?

4)   Does my life look new and different from the old life I lived in my pre- Christ days?

5)   Do I still cling to my own dreams and ambitions or have I completely surrendered my life to follow Christ and walk in newness of life?

6)   Do I find my sense of well being in my possessions… my job… my marriage? Or is it found in Christ, regardless of where I am, what I have or any other circumstances that surround me?

What are some of the ways that we are called to walk in this newness of life that Jesus purchased for us?

  1. Instead of wallowing in the opposite of newness… same old, same old… I can let go of my need to control everything! I can actually enjoy “Singing a new song to the Lord.” Let Him author it and put it to music in a way that only He can. Let Him write His story on my heart! Why on earth would we ever think we could write a better story ourselves?
  2. I can be determined to actually behave as a New creation! Out with the old – in with the new! …2 Cor. 5:17-21
  3. We really are a New man (or woman) when we give ourselves to the Lordship of Christ …Eph. 4:22-24… Col. 3:9-10… How do we step into or “put on” this new self? Galatians 2:20I 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.” That’s the secret…  If we want to truly live, we need to die to our old life. Bury it once and for all! That’s the picture God is painting in our baptism. Baptism is not just a ritual, something religious that we do just because it’s what Christians are supposed to do. We can’t “DO” anything to add to Christ’s finished work on the cross! Nevertheless Christ commands us to be baptized because this is an extremely important picture that He wants to communicate to us. John 12:24-26… Just like the seed must die in order to produce new life, Jesus had to die so we might have this new life. Did He die for us just so we could squander our life on meaningless pursuits?
  4. We are told we must die to our old life if we want to truly live and experience newness of life.  Mark 8:35 “Whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it.”
  5. We can enjoy this New and living way, the way we were designed to live… not for ourselves, but for others… Heb. 10:19-25
  6. To be Christ centered is to be others-centered… to be Ministers of a New covenant2 Cor. 3:5-6a
  7. Christ’s resurrection power enables us to serve the Lord in “newness of spirit.”…  Romans 7:6
  8. One day we’re promised a New nameRev.2:17
  9. Ultimately we look forward to New heavens and a new earthRev. 21:1
  10. Maybe as we learn to embrace the newness of the little changes He brings our way, we’ll be better prepared for the day when He makes “all things new”Rev. 21:5

Why would we want to settle for same old, same old when we are invited to participate in and celebrate this “newness of life”? … This is the very reason we were redeemed in the first place!

Think about that word… “REDEEMED”… We were bought at a very high price! Do you think it was Jesus’ intention to hang on the cross so we could continue down the same self-seeking path to fulfill our own personal goals and dreams?

Was this amazing gift of new life meant simply to enhance our own, old way of life?

Maybe we had a lot going for us already, and now we have fire insurance as well as a nice social club to attend every Sunday.  What a deal!

If that’s all you think you received when you responded to good news,  you really are missing out on the best part of the Good news!

Is it possible that God redeemed us to be His very own treasured possession?… To fulfill His own plan and purpose through us?

“I have redeemed you. I have called you by name. You are mine.”  Isaiah 43:1

Being a Christian is really simple, right? Just “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.” … “All who call on the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ will be saved.”… Do you notice an important word in each of these invitations? Have you ever considered what it means to call someone your “LORD”? Is that really so easy when we understand that it means we are giving up our right to be the master of our own life and handing that over to someone else?

The fact is, this new life is a free gift and there’s nothing we can do to earn it, because it already cost Jesus everything! But the beautiful thing is… once you actually step all the way in… past the foyer and into the party… into the very presence of your Redeemer, the One you’ve submitted to as Lord and Master… You realize that He knows you better than you know yourself and His plans for you are so far above anything that you could ever hope to dream up yourself.

Have you ever asked Him what His plans for you are?

Have you ever given Him permission to do with your life, whatever He pleases?

If you haven’t, I can guarantee that you are missing out! The same-old, same-old, day in, day out, way of life is all that you can expect. Is that really living? It’s not what you were created for and it’s certainly not what you were redeemed for! My prayer is that each of you will embrace this gift of walking in the newness of life that was purchased for you by the One who purchased you with His life!