All Scripture quotations are from the Authorized King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise indicated.
December 10, 2010
A New Creature
HANDS FOR JESUS
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2010 by Merle E. Koepke
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This Mini-Book is a continuation of other Parts of this series of Mini-books. It is very important that Christians understand what was written in the other Parts. The other Parts can be downloaded freely from our Web sites.
In 2 Corinthians 5:17 it says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
Many Christians today do not know what 2 Corinthians 5:17 is talking about. They read the Scriptures, they quote the Scriptures, but they do not have spiritual understanding of what the Scriptures are saying.
In 1 Corinthians 15:45-47 it says, "And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit...Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual...The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven." This tells us that there are two creations of mankind. The first creation of mankind was man in the flesh, called "Adam," meaning "mankind." Then there was a second creation of man in the Spirit, called "the last Adam" also meaning "mankind."
These are two different creations of mankind. The first Adam was "a living soul," with a body of flesh created of this earth. "The second man is the Lord from heaven," a life giving Spirit.
The first Adam was not spiritual, whereas the second Adam is spiritual. The first Adam was in the flesh, whereas the Second Adam is in the Spirit.
It is sad that so many are not teaching the truth that is revealed in 1 Corinthians 15:35-57. It has been in the Bible for almost two-thousand years. Still there are many teaching another doctrine.
Oh, that Christians would only understand the truth as to who they are in Christ Jesus. Adam was the first man created in Genesis 2:7. Adam was not spiritual, but was earthly of this earth with "a terrestrial body of flesh and bones, which needed air to breathe."
Christ is the last Man, created by God the day that Jesus arose again from the dead, with "a celestial" Spiritual body that does not need air to breathe. In Christ Jesus, we have eternal life, the same life that God has (which is called "zoe" in the Greek). This is the very life of God, which was in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In this new life we can enter into heaven and spend eternity with God.
Why do Christians still want to live like the world lives, when they should be living like God lives? How sad it is that Christians have been so long deceived by the enemy, not believing the Truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
A Real Christian
Today within the churches there are many calling themselves Christians. Just saying a person is a Christian does not make them a Christian. The word Christian means, "someone born again in Christ Jesus." Being born again in Christ Jesus, means that Christ dwells in us and we dwell in Christ. Therefore, we are a new creature, created in the likeness and image of Christ.
The new birth in Christ Jesus is not a physical birth in the flesh. It is a spiritual birth in the Spirit. We cannot normally see spiritual things with our natural eyes. Neither can we feel spiritual things with our hands, for spiritual things are not seen with our natural eyes or felt with our physical being.
Then how do we know if a person is a Christian or not? We can only know by their actions and the words they speak. Baby Christians still act like the world, for they have no understanding of who they are in Christ. Just like baby children in the world, they do not know how to act or how to talk.
Yet, there is one thing that will identify even a baby Christian, that is the desire to do the will of God. There is within them a desire to please the LORD, for the LORD dwells within them. This desire will show up in their daily lives. Many things they did before they were born again they will no longer desire to do.
A second indication is their desire for the Word of God, to learn from the Word of God. They will desire to know how to live the new life they have in Christ Jesus? No one can be truly born again and still desire to live like the world lives. Spiritual life in Christ Jesus is a totally new way of living. A new life produces a new way of living.
What are some of the indications of this new life in Christ Jesus? The first indication is their desire to be holy, just as God is holy. In 1 John 1:5,6 it says, "This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all...If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth." When a person is truly born again they have the Spirit of Christ in them, drawing them to walk and live in the likeness and image of Christ. If this desire is not in the life of someone who says they are a Christian, we need to find out why?
In the Epistle of First John it talks a lot about who is a Christian and who is not a Christian. In 1 John 2:3,4 it says, "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments...He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him." If someone says they are a Christian and does not keep the LORD's commandments, according to 1 John 2:4, they are a liar, and the truth is not in them.
In 1 John 2:5,6 it says, "But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him...He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked." By this we know who is truly born again, and those who say they are Christians but are not truly born again.
We know that baby Christians do not know and understand all that there is to know and understand. Just like a child born into this world, they need to learn the ways of the world and how to live in this world. Baby Christians need to learn the ways of God, and how to live in the Spirit.
But, it is not learning how to become religious, like the religious systems in the world. There are many religious systems in the world. Each one having another way of life and another doctrine or theology. In Christ there is only one doctrine and one way of living, that is to be taught by God and led by the Holy Spirit. In John 6:45, Jesus was quoting the Scriptures when He said, "It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me." Then in 1 John 2:27 this is explained by saying, "But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him."
How does a baby Christian go from born again to being taught by God? It is a process, that begins with receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit. We receive Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior, and we enter into the Body of Christ through the new birth. Once we are truly born again, there is a desire within us to receive the Holy Spirit and be taught by God.
If there is no desire to receive the Holy Spirit and be taught by God, there is a question? Are they truly born again, or did they just say a sinners prayer to satisfy the religious spirits that think they can do God's will by some other means? God looks at the hearts of people and responds according to the desires of their heart. This is an individual response between God and man individually. Every person must have a desire in their heart for God to respond and give them the desires of their heart. The starting point in every Christian's life is the desire to receive Jesus Christ as their LORD and Savior.
It tells us in Acts 2:21 and Romans 10:13, "And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved." Saved means "delivered and/or protected." God will deliver and protect anyone who will call upon the name of the LORD. God does not save people on the prayers of others. "Whosoever" means "the individual that desires to be saved," not the individuals who think they are doing God's will by getting someone to say a sinners prayer. It must be the will and intentions of the heart of the one who calls upon the name of the LORD themselves.
This same process applies to receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit. It must be the person who has the desire in their heart that does the asking to receive the Baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues. If the individual is not truly born again or the desire is not in the individuals heart, they will not receive the evidence of speaking in tongues.
God will not be deceived, and God will not go against His Word. It must be according to the written Word of God, otherwise it will only be a work of the flesh, in which no man can please God (Rom. 8:5-8).
What are some of the evidences of a truly born again Christian? In 1 John 3:5-10 it says, "And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin...Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not (does not continue in sin): whosoever sinneth (continues in sin) hath not seen him, neither known him...Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous...He that committeth sin (continues in sin) is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil...Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin (continue in sin); for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin (continue in sin), because he is born of God...In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother."
We need to be taught by God to know what this is talking about when in the King James Version of the Bible it makes statements that do not agree with 1 John 1:5-10). In 1 John 1:6,7 it says, "If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth...But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
Then In 1 John 1:8 it says, "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." In 1 John 1:9,10 it says, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness...If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us." Christians who are truly born again do sin. But, Christians who are truly born again do not "continue in sin," for the Spirit of Christ within us leads us to repentance and forgiveness of sins.
Repentance and forgiveness of sin restores our fellowship with God and we continue in Christ, washed by the Blood of the everlasting covenant. Those who continue in sin are not truly born again, or they have departed from the faith and did not continued in Christ after they were born again.
Speaking to the little children in Christ, 1 John 2:28,29 says, "And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming...If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him."
What about those who are no longer babes in Christ? How do we know if they are truly born again? Everyone who is truly born again has a witness within themselves, knowing beyond all doubt that they are truly born again. In 1 John 4:13 it says, "Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit." In Romans 8:16 it says, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." In 1 John 5:10 it says, "He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself..."
In the new birth in Christ Jesus, we have a witness within ourselves, a knowing, beyond all doubt that we are truly born again. It is not something that we learn or are taught by men. It is a witness of God within our spirit, and there is no doubt that we are truly born again into the Body of Christ.
There are many religious people calling themselves Christians, that are not truly born again. You will know them by the way they live and the way they talk.
Christians have a covenant with God in Christ Jesus. This covenant includes circumcision of the heart. If our heart is circumcised by the LORD, we will keep the covenant. An uncircumcised heart is the results of breaking the covenant we have with God in Christ Jesus. When a Christian's heart is not right with God, there is an indication that they have broken their covenant, and are not walking in the light as God is in the light.
Those Christians who are not living the life of Christ, need to be restored to fellowship with God (Gal. 6:1). Christians cannot have fellowship with the works of darkness and with God at the same time. God cannot have fellowship with darkness (Rom. 1:18-32; 2 Cor. 6:14-18; 1 John 1:5,6).
It is important that Christians understand the importance of walking in the light of the Word of God. Walking in the light includes keeping our garments spotless of the sins of this world. In Revelation 3:1-6 it says, "And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead...Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God...Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee...Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy...He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels...He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches."
What is written to the Church in Sardis is also written to all the Churches today. How many Christians today will still have their names written in the Book of Life when they leave this earth? How many will have their names taken out of the Book of Life before they leave this earth?
God has made a covenant with all who are born again in Christ Jesus. We must keep our covenant if we are to obtain the promises of God contained in our covenant. Our covenant with God is written in the New Testament which means "New Covenant." God will not break His covenant that He made with us in Christ Jesus. Therefore, we must not break our covenant with God, if we desire to spend eternity with God in Christ Jesus.
Jesus said in Matthew 7:21, "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." God has done a great work in Christ Jesus, that we can live forever with Him. Yet, there is a responsibility on our part, to keep the covenant that God has made with us in Christ Jesus. Keeping the covenant is our part. God will do His part for God cannot lie.
Renewing Our Mind
In Romans 8:9 it says, "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." Christians are no longer in Adam, but now they are in Christ Jesus. We were in Adam before we were born again. Now that we are born again, we are a new creature in Christ Jesus.
Christians are no longer in the flesh of Adam, but in the Spirit of Christ. Therefore, we must renew our minds to agree with the Word of God rather than the words of men. Our mind must be renewed, for it is the same mind we had when we were in Adam. Being in Christ, we are to renew our mind to think the way God thinks, and believe the way God believes (Rom. 12:2). We are to live the way God lives, for we are One with God in Christ Jesus (1 John 2:6).
Jesus could not teach us how to renew our mind, for the renewing of our mind must be taught by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit was not given until Jesus arose again from the dead (John 7:38,39). The teachings of the Holy Spirit are written in the Epistles of the New Testament.
In renewing of our mind, we must understand what God has done for us in Christ Jesus. First, we need to understand that it is a work of God, by grace through faith that we are saved. Not because of what we did, but because God loved us even before we were born again. By the works of the flesh (the natural man), no one can be saved or born again in Christ Jesus.
Our new birth in Christ Jesus is a complete work of God and not of man. In John 1:13 it says, "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."
Our righteousness, sanctification, and redemption is a complete work of Jesus Christ, and not of ourselves. In 1 Corinthians 1:30 it says, "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption." We are redeemed by the Blood of Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:7 says, "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace." In Galatians 4:4,5 it says, "But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law...To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons."
There are none in the Body of Christ that are greater than another. In 1 Peter 5:5, it says, "...Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble." Those who think they are more important than others in the Body of Christ could find themselves in danger of losing their inheritance in heaven, for "God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble." In Luke 9:23,24, Jesus said, "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me."
In Romans 6:23 it says, "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Our eternal life in Christ Jesus is a gift from God, of which no man can boast.
Christians love God because He first loved us (1 John 4:19). This is the love of God that He has given us in the fruit of the Spirit when we were born again into the body of Christ. No one can love God and not love those who are truly born again into the body of Christ. Those who love themselves more than they love others in the Body of Christ are in danger of the wrath of God which comes upon all those in the Body of Christ who do not glorify God and are not thankful for all that God has done for them (Rom. 1:18-21).
The Wrath of God
In Romans 1:18 it says, "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness." This is speaking of Christians, for the world does not know the truth. Only Christians can "hold the truth in unrighteousness."
Christians who walk in the flesh and not in the Spirit will easily get into all sorts of operations which are not of God. If Christians continue to do the things that are not pleasing to God and continue to live like the world lives, God could turn them over to a reprobate mind, which is an unapproved rejected mind. This would not be good to say the least.
When God no longer approves of the minds of Christians, Satan has control in their lives. Once Satan gets control of a Christian's mind it is not easy for them to repent. They could easily get into a position whereby they cannot repent (Heb. 6:4-6).
It is sad when you see those who say they are Christians and are involved in the things mentioned in Romans 1:23-32. There is a lot mentioned in the New Covenant concerning those who get involved in things that God does not approve of, and think it is ok to do those things.
It is not just homosexuals and lesbians that God does not approve of, but it includes "sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful" (Rom. 1:29-31 NKJV).
Those who continue to do those things are in danger of the wrath of God coming upon them and God turning them over to a reprobate mind. This is not good to say the least. Christians need to be serious about their walk with God and the way they treat others.
Lying spirits operate wherever they are given an opportunity to operate, even in Churches. All lying spirits are sent by Satan. He was a liar from the beginning (John 8:44).
These lying spirits can transfer from one individual to another without people knowing what is happening. A good person, can receive a lying spirit without understanding what is happening in their lives. It takes the Holy Spirit to identify the lying spirits in individuals who have received these lying spirits.
Once someone receives a lying spirit, that spirit will slowly begin to manifest in their lives. In Romans 6:16 it says, "Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?"
When a Christian submits to a lying spirit, they will become a servant to that lying spirit. That lying spirit will cause them to think they can lie and still inherit eternity in heaven. I question that kind of thinking. In Revelation 21:8 it says, "...all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."
A liar is someone who continues to lie and does not repent. Those who have lied, and repented, are not liars (they are forgiven). But those who continue to lie are liars. A liar is an unbeliever (for if they believed the Gospel, they would not lie).
In 2 Corinthians 6:14, it says, "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?" Christians need to be very careful who they become in fellowship with. Fellowship with those who are liars could yoke them together with "lying spirits." Lying spirits are "spirits of unrighteousness." God cannot have fellowship with unrighteousness.
Lying spirits work their way up from individuals to couples. Then from couples to families. From families to Churches, and groups of Churches. All of these can operate within the Body of Christ.
These lying spirits are spirits of this world, who have entered into the Churches, and continue to operate wherever Christians permit them to operate. This should not be among Christians.
These lying spirits have come into the lives of Christians one by one. Starting with one person, then transferring from one to another until they become commonly accepted within groups of Christians.
Have you ever heard a Christian say, "I will do this or I will do that, and they do not do what they say?" If you have, then you know they are lying. If they are lying, then there is a lying spirit in operation in their lives.
In many Churches today, this is not uncommon among the Pastors. Many Pastors say they are going to do something, but they do not do what they say. That is a lying spirit in operation in the one who lied. Be careful where you go to Church for Jesus said, "...if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch" (Matt. 15:14).
Unless lying spirits are overcome by the Word of God and the Holy Spirit working within individuals, many Christians will continue permitting them to operate in their lives until the day they face the LORD.
As Christians, we must come against the works of the Devil, to destroy the works of the Devil among other Christians. This must be done individually, working with each individual to restore them to fellowship with God.
Lying spirits are works of darkness. In 1 John 1:5-7 it says, "This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all...If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth...But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
When a Christian talks to another Christian it is the same as if they are talking to the LORD. Every Christian is in Christ Jesus, and Christ is in them. Look what the LORD said to the Apostle Paul, before he was converted. In Acts 9:4 it says, "And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?" Saul thought he was persecuting Christians, but the LORD said he was persecuting Him. To speak against another Christian is the same as speaking against the LORD. For the LORD is in every Christian, working to help them in every area of their lives. Anyone who is a Christian, is in Christ and Christ is in them.
Christians who say they are in Christ ought to walk as Jesus walked. In 1 John 2:6 it says, "He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked."
Let us not be deceived by the operation of the spirits of this world, who lead Christians into works of unrighteousness. Speaking of Jesus, Hebrews 5:8,9 says, "Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered...And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him."
God has great plans for those who will obey the LORD. It is important that Christians do not let someone tell them something that does not agree with the New Covenant we have in Christ Jesus. God always required obedience with faith.
We are saved by grace through faith (Eph. 2:8,9). But that does not eliminate obeying the LORD. In Matthew 24:13 Jesus said, "But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved." We endure by obeying the LORD in everything, continuing to live by faith.
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