by Hellen J. Kuleskey
Whether we are young, middle-aged or elderly, we all like to receive something new. New clothes, new items for our homes, new gadgets (like cell phones or toys for children) and needful equipment such as bicycles or motorbikes. If you live in a large city, the list may include electric appliances, a TV or a computer.
What do we do with the items we are replacing? Do we keep everything old? Do we pass on to others what still has some use? Or do we hold onto everything to give us a sense of security? What do we do with the items that are totally useless and beyond repair? We must discard them.
As it is in the natural realm, so it is in the spiritual realm. Christians are exhorted in Scripture to get rid of some old things and replace them with new. Paul in his letter to the Ephesian church gives specific instructions of what we are to discard. We are to put off the “old man,” which is human nature without God. We are to put on the “new man,” the new nature.
The Amplified Bible gives an insightful explanation to these instructions: “Strip yourselves of your former nature [put off and discard your old unrenewed self] which characterized your previous manner of life and becomes corrupt through lusts and desires that spring from delusion.
“And be renewed in the spirit of your mind [having a fresh mental and spiritual attitude]. And put on the new nature (the regenerate self) created in God’s image, [Godlike] in true righteousness and holiness” Ephesians 4: 22-24.
Paul continues with a list of what things of the old life need to be discarded: anger, stealing, bad language, bitterness, bad temper, resentment, quarreling, slander, malice and grieving the Holy Spirit.
And what are the new things we are to put on? “Become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely] as God in Christ forgave you” Ephesians 4:32.
What an awesome opportunity at the beginning of each new day to exchange our “old stuff” for ALL the spiritual blessings that God has given us through Christ.
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