Eph.4:17-24. Pray. V.23.
As we begin another New Year, we want to look to God and His sovereign grace for the spiritual strength we need to press on in faith and holiness. I am not talking about New Year resolutions. Most of us know by now that they do not work. We might start the year with a firm and steadfast resolute determination to cut back on our bad habits, and to eat right and get the proper exercise. We tell ourselves we will save more and be better at keeping our finances straight and so on and so on. There are hundreds of other things we might vow, with all good intentions, to do or not do. However, in the end, we always lose the battle. The reason for this is that when you fight yourself, you always lose. After all, who else is going to lose? Do not let this discourage you. We are not here to depress you. We are here to encourage you to be renewed in the spirit of your mind. This message is mainly for Christian believers. Non-Christians have greater problems than what we are addressing in this message. As believers, let us stop beating ourselves up, and trust God to renew us in the spirit of our mind.
A Renewed Walk. Eph.4:17. v.20-21. We have a new walk.
1. As a Believer, you are not the enemy. Stand against the world, flesh & devil.
2. As a Believer, the Way of the World is the enemy. 1Cor.15:54-57.
3. As a Believer, You have victory over the vanity of sin. 1Jn.5:4.
A Renewed Understanding. Eph.4:18. v.20-21. We have a new mindset.
1. As a Believer, you have an enlightened understanding. Prov.20:12. Acts 16:14
2. As a Believer, you have the life of God by grace. 1Jn.5:11-12.
3. As a Believer, There is the confidence of assurance in Christ. 1Jn.5:13-15.
A Renewed Feeling. Eph.4:19. v.20-21. We have a new zeal for God.
1. As Believers we stand against lasciviousness. (Unbridled lust & passion) Jd.4.
2. As Believers we stand against uncleanness. So-called gays do the most unclean acts imaginable. To persist in that life is to go the way of reprobation. Rom.1:24 and 27.
3. As Believers we stand against greediness. Sometimes it is amazing to see what sin God will call to the bar for judgment. It is interesting that greed is one that is listed categorically as one to watch out for in the ministry. 1Tim.3:3 & 8. By the way – the wealthy are not alone in the struggle with greed. Some of the poorest in society are plagued by it and will buy a lottery ticket rather than food for the family. We ought to stand against this enemy of the soul. Heb.13:5.
A Renewed Conversation. Eph.4:22. v.23-24. We have a new way of life.
1. As Believers we stand against what we once were. 2Cor.5:17.
2. As Believers we stand against corruption. Rom.8:21.
3. As Believers we stand against deceitful lusts. Mk.4:18-19.
Conclusion: Let us not be fooled into thinking that this year it will be different when we resolve to change ourselves for the better. We are not the enemy. God has changed us by His grace and He gives grace to renew the spirit of our mind. Let us stop fighting ourselves and surrender to the grace of our merciful God. We have the victory. Let us be renewed in the good fight of faith against the world, the flesh and the Devil. AMEN.