What does it mean when God says you are a new creature?

Self-ImprovementSpirituality

  • Author James Rondinone
  • Published September 14, 2023
  • Word count 1,192

13

You Are a New Creature

Have you ever caught up with someone you hadn’t seen for many years who committed a serious criminal offense and were shocked to see how their life had changed for the better? Here’s an article that exemplifies this.

FREE TO SUCCEED: NAOMI BLOUNT

“Over the years, [I’ve] written my obituary numerous times,” says Naomi Blount. “I never thought [I’d] ever be coming home.” That’s because in 1982, she was sentenced to life in Pennsylvania state prison. She was [thirty-two] years old.

A drug addict and alcoholic, Naomi struggled every day of her adult life. One terrible day, a man stabbed her friend, Brenda Baker. The two women then found the man and wanted to hurt him, but it was Brenda who delivered the fatal injury, not Naomi. In Pennsylvania, you don’t have to be the one who committed homicide to get charged with the crime; you just have to have been there in a certain capacity.

Behind bars with no release in sight, Naomi’s tough situation was matched by grit and determination to improve herself. Her son, [ten] years old when she went inside, meant everything to Naomi, and for his sake, she vowed that even though she was supposed to die in prison, she would be leaving the world a better person than when she’d entered it. She earned several degrees, stayed clean, and helped others.

“I wanted my son to, at least when he picked up my body, I wanted him to know that his mother was more than an alcoholic and a drug addict.”

Naomi applied for and was denied commutation five times. About to give up, she hand-wrote a heartfelt plea to the Board of Pardons, begging them to reconsider. Then, in the equivalent of winning a lottery ticket, she was granted clemency – almost unheard of in Pennsylvania. She’d been in prison [thirty-seven] years.

Remarkably, now [seventy-two], Naomi is not bitter. In the three years since she’s been released, it seems as though there’s [nothing,] she hasn’t been able to accomplish. [She’s] a vocal advocate for reform, and she also works as a commutation specialist for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. “My job allows me to encourage those that are on the inside,” she says.

She’s very close to her son, now [fifty], and his family. “I’m getting ready to be a great-grandmother for the second time,” Naomi says. “This will be the first baby that [I’m] home for.” And the passion for music that she has had her whole life has flourished. Recently, she released an album, called “Mello-D” by Simply Naomi.

She also works as a program consultant for a group that helped her when she was inside, Shining Light. They provide support to people in prison.

Naomi is herself a “shining light,” trying every day to express what she feels deeply: gratitude. “I’m always saying, ‘Lord, thank you. Thank you, God. Thank you, [God.’”]93

As Naomi was given clemency, a pardon after many years in prison, so have you been granted such by someone who knows everything about you. Even though the penalty for sin has been taken care of and the record of such forgiven by Jesus Christ’s atonement on the cross, this hasn’t changed the fallen nature that deprives everyone from having an intimate relationship with God.

Fortunately, God knows how to take each person out from their perpetual bondage by giving them an opportunity to respond to the message of a new life, i.e., of a new nature that can be theirs. And if and when they make this decision, a pronouncement will be made relating to them which is found in the book of 2 Corinthians. Let’s go there and find out what this announcement is all about.

2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

You’re described as being in Christ, which [speaks of your spiritual relationship to Him because you] believed the message of the gospel and was identified by faith with Him.94 Thus, if this is the case, and it is, then you’re a new creature, a new creation, a new person on the inside.95 Did you hear that? You’re a new being, a child of God!

As such, old things (selfish, carnal views of ourselves, of others, and of Christ;96those things that characterized the pre-Christian life97) have passed away (disappeared) and your whole sphere of being has become new, whom God the Father owns as [His] workmanship, and which he can look on and pronounce very good.98

God doesn’t see you as you see yourself at times as falling short, as never going to change, as being hopeless in this or that aspect of your life. This doesn’t mean that He’s unaware of your sinful tendencies. However, this doesn’t take away from His recognition of you as His son or daughter as was His perception of David when God sent Samuel to the house of Jesse to anoint him the next king of Israel.

1 Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

So, find out what God’s declaration is of you in His Word regarding every area of your new life and begin to think of yourself as to the new person you’ve become. Remind yourself that you’ve been given a new nature even though the reality of such in your thinking, speaking, and acting hasn’t been worked out yet. And remember, [you’re] a new creation, a new man, a work of the divine power as decided and as glorious as when God created all things out of nothing,99 with new views, new motives, new principles, new [objectives] and plans of life.100

Before we take a look at another beautiful description of our new lives in Christ in the next section, I’d like to leave you with this quote from Barnes Notes that accentuates what we’ve just talked about.

The idea evidently is, not that he ought to be a new creature, but that he is in fact; not that he ought to live as becomes a new creature - which is true enough - but that [he’ll] in fact live in that way, and manifest the characteristics of the new creation.101

Prior to your conversion to Christ, was there ever anything that you longed for that you believed would provide you with happiness but always seemed to be outside of your grasp? There was one lifelong endeavor of mine that I only found in Christ. What was it?

Endnotes

93“Free to Succeed: Naomi Blount,” FAMM 3 November 2022

.

94Bible Knowledge Commentary/New Testament.

95IVP Bible Background Commentary.

96Jamieson, Faucet, and Brown Commentary.

97UBS New Testament.

98Adam Clarke’s Commentary.

99Barnes’ Notes.

100Barnes’ Notes.

101Barnes’ Notes.

My name is James Rondinone. I am a husband, father, and spiritual leader.

I grew up in Massachusetts and began my own spiritual journey early on in life.

I attended Bible college, having completed a two-year Christian Leadership Course of Study and graduated as valedictorian (Summa Cum Laude).

Studying and teaching the Word of God has been a passion of mine for over 20 years.

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