Friday, September 26, 2014

Today's Devotional from Pastor Clay: The New Man - Ephesians 4:20-24

September 26, 2014
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The New Man - Ephesians 4:20-24

Some years ago I was shopping for a new acoustic guitar, and I stopped by a local guitar shop to play a few of the different models that I was considering. I had just come out of a client meeting, and was wearing a fairly nice double-breasted suit with suspenders (back in the day when those were still in style!). After sitting and playing awhile, the owner came up and we started talking, and he asked what I thought was the weirdest question: "Are you a lawyer?" "No," I answered, "why would you think that?" "Well, he said, "you dress like a lawyer!" That comment got me thinking about the fact that people make a lot of assumptions about who we are based solely on what we're wearing. That fact has a spiritual application as well, as Paul notes in Ephesians 4:

But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. Ephesians 4:20-24

When Paul says "put off… the old man, put on… the new man," he's giving us the same idea as taking off a set of old, dirty, ragged clothes, and putting on a fresh new set of clean clothes. Before we knew Christ, our conduct was according to our old nature, and we practiced the sins that fulfilled that nature. Now that we know Christ, and are learning Christ, we should live according to a new conduct that fulfills the new nature we've been given in Christ;

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17

Just like putting on a new set of clothes will change how you think about yourself, and how others see you; Putting on a new conduct, what we learn from God's word, will change how we see ourselves, and how others see us. But it isn't just about the behavior, as we've been given a new nature, the nature of Christ, that now lives within us. Knowing Christ is learning about that nature, and allowing that nature to guide our actions. Our education becomes our experience, and our experience becomes our expression.

"Lord, help me to live my life today according to the new nature that You've given me."

Pastor Clay


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